What Does it Mean to Surrender
What Does it Mean to Surrender?
We are clingers. We love to hold onto what we should have released long ago. We recite hurtful words, relive painful experiences, express fearful concerns, and in a nanosecond, yield an opinion that is based purely on assumption. We cling. We hold on tight. Yet, we do our best to convince those around us and even ourselves that we, as Christ followers, are surrendered.
Let’s get real and be honest with ourselves. For those of us who have been saved, we initially surrendered to the drawing of the Holy Spirit. We surrendered our heart and asked Jesus to forgive us and to come and be the Lord of our life. We realized we could never earn God’s favor so we gave up and accepted the gift of God’s amazing grace. But there is more, so much more, to our Christian walk. God is asking for surrender beyond our salvation. He is calling us to surrender our way, our will and our self-worship to Him. This is where we struggle, right? We cling to the need to get our way; we long to see our will be done; and let’s be honest – we are perched on the throne of our heart and struggle to relinquish Lordship to Jesus.
I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. Galatians 2:20
So, you see Jesus died so that we could die to our sinful way. We are to be crucified with Him and instead raised to walk in oneness with our Savior. What does that mean? It means we have been made new. (2 Corinthians 5:17) It means that our life should no longer be all about ‘me’; instead our life is to be all about Him. Instead of pursuing our way, we are to let Him have His way in us. Last week, we talked about that in the post, “Have you Been Set Free?”. You see, the only way we can experience freedom is to surrender to the One who has set us free. His way is so much better than our way – but we can’t see it. (Jeremiah 29:11) It requires placing our faith in Him and knowing that His way is best when we don’t understand it, when it doesn’t make sense to us. It is time to stop being foolish and trying to get our way. We need to loosen our grip, let it go and raise our hands in surrender. Let God know you are ready for Him to have His way.
…But as those who are alive from the dead, offer yourselves to God, and all the parts of yourselves to God as weapons for righteousness. Romans 6:13
Surrendering is an act of our will. Throughout scripture Jesus often said, “Will you” and “Are you willing”. God gave us free will and is waiting for us to surrender our will back to Him. To surrender our will – we must surrender our mind (our thoughts – Proverbs 23:7, Philippians 4:8, Isaiah 26:3, Philippians 2:5) and our body (our actions - I Corinthians 3:16, Galatians 5:22, John 13:34-35, Romans 12:1; James 1:22). We are to decisively surrender our all to Jesus. Submitting to God’s will means surrendering our hearts and yielding our bodies to Christ so that God might continue His work through us. I Thessalonians 4:3 tells us, “For this is God’s will, your sanctification…” That is pretty clear. God’s will for us is to surrender daily to the process of becoming more like Jesus. Only then can we become a beacon of light in this very dark world.
Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wants to follow after me, let Him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of me will find it. For what will it benefit someone if he gains the whole world yet loses his life? Or what will anyone give in exchange for his life? For the Son of Man is going to come with His angels in the glory of His Father, and then He will reward each according to what he has done. Matthew 16:24-27
And lastly, let’s jump down off the perch we have placed ourselves on and exalt Jesus to His proper place in our lives. He is to be first – before our spouse, before our children, before our desires, before our goals, before absolutely everything. We are so full of ourselves. We start sentences with ‘in my opinion’ and ‘I think’ and ‘it seems to me’. Stop that! Instead let’s lean into God’s word and let our mind be filled with His truth. What would God have us do? What does His word say about this situation? How can He receive the glory? How can our lives honor Him and point others to Him? It is not about us, people. One day Jesus is going to come busting through the clouds and there will be no ‘do-overs’, no ‘hang on a minutes’, and no ‘can I get this right real quicks’. Denying ourselves and following Him needs to be taking place today.
Let’s let go of all we are clinging to, listening to, and chasing after. Let’s give up our way, our will and our love of self. Let’s raise both hands in surrender – relinquishing fear, relinquishing doubt and relinquishing control to the One we can trust, the One we can believe and the One we should be 100% devoted to – Jesus! Let’s be in practice what we claim to be in theory. Let’s surrender!
Let’s surrender all.
Raise your hands.
Give it all up.
A Word From Pam:
Surrender. It is a daily choice. Will you take time to study the scriptures listed above? Getting into the word and submitting to the Lordship of Jesus is the only way we can give us our self-focus. Let's continue to talk about it and encourage one another. :-)
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