Thursday, May 30, 2013

Day 10 - Surrender

Yes, Lord, Yes
To Your will and to Your way.
I wanna say yes, Lord, Yes,
I will trust You and obey, 
When Your spirit speaks to me, with my whole heart I’ll agree
And my answer will be yes, Lord, yes.

Back in 1991, Michael and I made a change in churches and we found ourselves in our first non-denominational, “full gospel” church.  These lyrics were to one of the first songs I remember singing.  It is a song of surrender.  This song would always get stuck in my head.  I found myself always singing it in the shower, singing it while I prayed, or putting a “soul choir groove” to it while I was working in the kitchen!  Looking back now, I think that was God’s plan.  He needed that message of surrender to get firmly and deeply planted down into my inner spirit (like a daffodil bulb that gets planted in the fall for an early spring bloom), so that the answer, “yes, Lord” would ultimately naturally bubble up (or emerge and sprout up) when it came time to answer His call.  I used to get so tired of that song!  I would try to start singing other songs so that I could get that one out of my mind but it never worked.  (Of course, now that I am bringing it all to my memory right now, it will be stuck again for quite some time!) 

 It was the music in the church that spoke keenly to our hearts.  It was the worship through music that God opened up a window for us to see that there was more to our walk with Him.  It was a crossroads.  He had an adventure for us.  The music ushered us into a tangible, more intimate place with God than we had ever experienced.  What we did not know at the time was that it was the presence of “surrender” that was luring us. Peace and intimacy with God follow when we surrender…And surrender…. And surrender…. And surrender…  Learning to surrender ourselves while worshipping with music was a baby step to learning how to surrender when it came to crossroads that required more from us in order to surrender…. quit your job (trust me), change churches (trust me), coach full time (trust me), stop singing (trust me), start singing in church (trust me), start writing (trust me), have a baby (trust me), sell your house (trust me), buy this fixer-upper (trust me), start your own firm (trust me), homeschool your kids (trust me), live without Michael(trust me), move to New York(trust me)…surrender, surrender, surrender… daily, continually,

“Don’t surrender any part of yourselves to sin to be used for wicked purposes.  Instead, give yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life, and surrender your whole being to Him to be used for righteous purposes.” 
Romans 6:13

Rick Warren states in What on Earth am I Here For, “Surrendered people are the ones that God uses…. Nothing is more powerful than a surrendered life in the hands of God… Victory comes through surrender.  William Booth, founder of Salvation Army, said, ‘ The greatness of a man’s power is in the measure of his surrender.’”  In 1 Corinthians 1:9, it says, “God, who got you started in this spiritual adventure, shares with us the life of His Son and our master Jesus.”  God placed in us a longing for adventure!  It is natural for us to yearn for it and want it…. But, we must surrender for the adventure to begin.   God HAS an adventure for our days.   Like Abraham, “By an act of faith, Abraham said yes to God’s call to travel to an unknown place that would become his home.  When he left he had no idea where he was going!”  Hebrews 11:8

If you don’t surrender, sometimes He may put you into a position of forced surrender…and it is usually uncomfortable and it may hurt.  We would never have to trust Him, surrender to Him, if our life was always easy. We could simply rely on ourselves.  Why wait until the surrender is forced?  Its often times fear.  Fear keeps up from saying yes…. fear gets in the way of all of God’s plans. In my opinion, it is the number one warfare tactic of the enemy.  It will stop us in our tracks.  It will make us turn the other direction.  It will make us procrastinate our surrender.  (I have learned so much about the spirit of fear and it’s lies over the last two years, that I am thinking I may write a book and expose it for the nasty, lying, manipulating, bully that it is.)  What is the worst thing that can happen when we surrender to God?  What are we afraid of when we are at the crossroads of either doing what God is showing us to do next or to continue in the same way we were traveling?  

When we say, “yes” to God, our heart becomes at peace.  “I’ve told you all this so that in trusting Me, you will be unshakable and assured, deeply at peace.”  John 16:33  Here I sit in the country of the Hudson River Valley… moved on in this adventure by traveling here on the road for three days, with two cars (packed to the top –literally), three kids, two dogs, and my mother, while driving in the rain the entire journey.  I was moving to a land where I knew no one.  I surrendered my life’s direction to God.  I still do not completely understand the road, but I do feel unshakable, assured, and deeply at peace with the choice to surrender, and a comforting sense of peace where God has us at this point in the adventure.  I have no doubt that His plan is perfect.  I have no doubt that surrendering my future to Him was best choice I could have made for my children and me. 

With eyes straight ahead, I will strive to surrender to God each forward step in the direction that He leads, even when what I may see is total darkness.

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