Victory comes through surrender. Surrender doesn’t weaken you; it strengthens you. Surrendered to God, you don’t have to fear or surrender to anything else
~Rick Warren, Purpose Driven Life
As much as I’ve understood that “Surrender” is necessary in my personal relationship with God , I had never thought of surrender as being a position of continual VICTORY. Yet, when I read those words, they immediately resonated with me, and awakened me to a greater desire to be fully surrendered to God. Surrender is defined,
To cease resistance and submit to authority; yielding to power or control.
In a natural sense, the most common idea of “surrender” is when a person is under arrest, yet this visual is certainly not one of victory. In fact, it is actually a portrait of quite the opposite. When a criminal surrenders, he or she is declaring defeat, or giving up. So it’s just like our God, who warns us,
My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts, and my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine (Isaiah 55:8),
to redeem that common image, and challenge us to see surrender from His perspective. Surrender is continually trusting and fully believing God when He says, as He said in Jeremiah,
I know the plans and thoughts that I have for you, plans for peace and well-being and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope (Jeremiah 29:11).
He surely has a beautiful plan for our lives, the end result of that plan is peace, well-being, and HOPE. I realize that the most beautiful gift God has given me is the gift of choice. These days, I am exercising my right to choose, by embracing the beauty of surrender more.
Surrender is being obedient to the instructions found in God’s Word. It’s acknowledging and following the Holy Spirit, which is the still small voice within me that echoes God’s words in my ear when I need to have them reinforced in my heart, times when I need confirmation, direction, or when I am straying. Surrender is relinquishing control, it’s not forcing things to happen, but fully trusting God’s timing in all areas of my life, and this may be the hardest part of surrender. Surrender is accepting the challenges of life, understanding that those challenges will work for my good, and most importantly will work for God’s plan and purpose in my life. Ultimately, surrender says, yes to God. It says,
“My Father in Heaven, whatever my lot, thou has taught me to say, it is well with my soul.”
Surrender is a choice that I am making with more fervor, confidence, and expectation. I am finding more peace and security in my life, as I am realizing more and more that when I surrender to God, I have NO THING or NO ONE to fear!
My hope for you this week, is that you will engage in the beauty and rhythm of adopting a Surrendered lifestyle. Like anything else, it gets easier with practice. It’s the bravest thing you can do for your life. It will draw you closer to God, and it will allow you to see the beauty found in trusting Him, and trusting His timing.
Warren’s quote can be found in Chapter 10 of the book, the chapter is entitled, The Heart of Worship. He offers 2 questions to reflect on and journal responses to:
- What area of my life am I holding back from God?
- What am I afraid of?
I encourage you to take some time to think about these questions, and take a step further by jotting down your answers. I found that engaging in this reflection and response exercise opened my understanding to what was holding me back. Until I was able to pinpoint what was holding me back , and what I was really afraid of, I did not know exactly what I needed to give up to God in order to be free. I have been giving these two things to God quite often, since January 10th, and I know these are the things God desires from me most.
Brothers and sisters, in view of all we have just shared about God’s compassion, I encourage you to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, dedicated to God and pleasing to him. This kind of worship is appropriate for you. Don’t become like the people of this world. Instead, change the way you think. Then you will always be able to determine what God really wants—what is good, pleasing, and perfect.
(Romans 12:1-2, God’s Word)
Until next time, my prayer for you is that you would surrender more to God daily and that you will keep your Hope Living and Active!
Have A Great Week, Intentionally!