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True Surrender

In January 2020, one Sunday morning, we sang the song Surrender by Lincoln Brewster (Click the button below to listen). I felt God prompt me to really consider this word in my life. The chorus is “Now I Surrender, Surrender all.” It was a powerful challenge.

I was telling a friend about it and she sent me a book called, My One Word (see below for details) It encourages you to take one word and focus on it through the year with God. So, this is what I have been doing with the word ‘Surrender’ and I wanted to share a little part of my journey.

In the summer, there was a story in the news about a 10 year old boy called Ravi who got swept out to sea while enjoying a day at the beach in Scarborough. His Dad tried to save him but couldn’t reach him. As he was taken out on the current, the boy remembered a TV documentary about surviving at sea. The advice was to fight your instinct to swim hard or thrash about – this can lead to exhaustion, breathing in water and drowning. Instead, relax and float on your back until you have regained control of your breathing. Then spread your arms and legs like a starfish, continue to float and shout for help. Ravi used that advice and the RNLI said that this undoubtedly saved his life.

It struck me that surrendering to God can be like this. What if you fight your own instinct and your own need to be in control of your life and to do things your way. Instead give over control to God. There is the shout for help, but cry out to God in surrender, to lay everything down and trust Him completely. Just as Ravi trusted the advice that saved his life. 

Psalm 37 v 7 says “Surrender yourself to the Lord and wait patiently for Him.” If we are honest, what about the no go areas of our lives that we don’t surrender? What are the things that we want to remain in control of? 

Here is the challenge I am sharing with God: Where are the no-go areas in my life? Which are the areas that need to be opened up to the God of love. How do I need to fight my own instinct to do things my way, and to trust Him? What do I do to surrender ALL to God? This requires complete honesty before God. 

As we head into Autumn/Winter in the UK, Covid restrictions are ongoing. It has not been easy. But God is helping me to surrender all my hopes, possibilities, plans that I have been holding onto with a deepening sense of frustration. To lay them all down and then wait for Him to show me the new things He has planned. To be like Ravi. and fight my own instincts, lay back like a starfish and trust God. For my Hope is in Him alone. 

Two verses of scripture have been uppermost in my thoughts:

“Neither do people pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.”

Matthew‚ 9:17 NLT

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3: 5-6

We need to be ready for the new things the Lord has for us! They may look very different from what we thought, but the Lord IS at work in new and exciting ways!

Liz in an Inspire Missioner based in Chesterfield, England.

My One Word, by Mike Ashcroft and Rachel Olsen, Zondervan 2012

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