We don’t like the word surrender, and for understandable reasons. The word usually conjures up images of a white flag, defeat, and humiliation. It speaks of weakness and disappointment. We’d much prefer the word victory or perhaps even compromise. But surrender? No thank you.
What makes the concept of surrender scary to us? To surrender is to give up control. Think of one general surrendering to another. None of us relish giving up control, especially to the enemy. However, when the one you’re surrendering to is infinitely kind, good, and compassionate? Well, that’s a completely different story.
Suddenly, surrender begins to look a whole lot like freedom, wholeness, peace.
Over the last few years, God has stamped this word upon my heart. The concept of surrendering oneself day by day, moment by moment to the Lord is at the core of what it means to walk out the Christian life. Paul exhorts, “present your bodies as a living sacrifice” (Romans 12:1). I’m sure you’ve heard it said that living sacrifices are apt to crawl right off the alter, which is why we must surrender again and again. When we realize that we belong to the One who created and redeemed us and that He really does have the right to be Lord over our lives, surrender becomes non-optional. “For you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body” (1 Corinthians 6:20). This is a command, but oh what a glorious command it is!
In and of ourselves we cannot execute proper control over ourselves, others, or our circumstances. We are weary, limited human beings, still riddled with sin from our broken natures and the brokenness surrounding us.
It is the very kindness of God that invites us to cast ourselves upon the rock of Christ and find Him sufficient and faithful.
He is limitless and the only One able to work powerfully in and through us to accomplish His great plans for us. When we come to the place where we truly believe this—deep in our bones—surrender becomes a joy.
We are surrendering to the One who knows us intimately and loves us on the merit of His own beloved Son. We are surrendering to the One who sees the big picture and who is in charge of it! We are surrendering to the One who has accomplished the victory and bestows it upon us. We are trading our rags for His glory, and it is the very best of exchanges.
In 2020, I’ll be focusing on this idea of surrendering all we are and all we have to the Lord. What does this practically look like in the lives of believers walking in all different kinds of circumstances? How do we surrender our families, marriages, children, health, and so much more? I think we learn best when we witness the boots-on-the-ground faith of others and so I’ll be offering you a series of conversations in which we’ll learn from faithful brothers and sisters in Christ what it means to walk out a life of surrender.
Our lives are stories in service of the greatest Story. Join me, as together we learn to live out surrendered stories to Christ.