Throughout my life God has brought many opportunities for me to grow in the area of surrender and I thought I would share a few of them with you.
When I was 7 years old, I underwent heart surgery. My mother has shared with me that when they were wheeling me into the operating room, I said, “God’s going to take care of me.” I was surrendering to what God wanted for my life and I knew he was in complete control. At an early age, I was beginning to understand what a heart of surrender looked like.
As a young lady the Lord continued to teach me surrender as I had many opportunities to be obedient to the choices Dad and Mom made for me. (e.g. what I would wear, what music I would listen to, who my friends would be, what functions I would attend.) I also had several instances in this season where I was faced with trials of various types. In these times I had to make a conscience decision to surrender and forgive the other individual who had wronged me, even in times where my counselors agreed I was not at fault.
Then there was a season of my life where I desperately wanted to be married. I would cry myself to sleep at night on occasion and cry out to the Lord often for a husband. In my early twenties there was a young man interested in me. I liked him and he liked me, but there were several areas where we just didn’t see eye to eye and there was enough of a difference that my parents and I felt we would not be equally yoked. I would have to say that going through that experience was probably the greatest struggle and test of surrender that I had known up to that point. I desperately wanted to get married and to start a family.
About one year after that relationship ended, the Lord saw fit for me to meet my future husband Stephen! On the flight home from one of our initial visits, I believed that he was not interested in me as I had hoped he would be. (Little did I know, the truth was completely the opposite and he was actually planning on calling my father in two weeks!) I remember sitting on the airplane and praying, “Lord, obviously he is not interested in me in that way, so I thank you for the friendship you have given me with him and his family, but I see this chapter has ended and the door has been closed. I am excited to see what you have for me in the future, Lord.” It was at that moment I came to the point of a deeper understanding of what surrender really meant.
Little did I know that the next season of my life would involve a complete crash course on surrender.
I became a wife and mother in my mid twenties. Although being a wife involves some aspects of surrender, (waking up early and fixing breakfast for your husband, packing him a lunch and being cheerful and attentive to him in the evenings) the birth of our first child brought me to a whole new level of understanding. Motherhood has called me to daily surrender to a full life of sacrifice, hard work, and serving others. Now I’m not just getting up early in the morning, but really early in the morning, 2 A.M. 5 A.M. and 8:00 A.M., as I care for little ones who need me. I daily choose to surrender my life, my time, my energy as I repeat the tasks of motherhood over and over again. It’s not only for a day, a week, a month or even a year but Lord willing for the next 20-30 years.
Then there is my time. I don’t wake up anymore in the morning thinking, “What would I like to do today? Hmmm?” I wake up each morning and immediately think “what do I need to do to take care of my husband and little ones today? What should my family have for breakfast this morning? What would be the most nutritious foods that will fuel and nourish them for their start to the day?”
What I’m endeavoring to communicate with you is that we are called to a LIFE of surrender. Daily surrender. Moment by moment surrender.
Many of the things I’ve shared today come from the vantage point of my life as a young wife and mother. I recognize that not all of you reading this are in the same season of life as I am. I hope that my testimony will challenge you and cause you to wrestle with the reality of what God has called you to, whatever the situation.
Here is my challenge:
The more you allow the Lord to develop and teach you surrender in the season of life you are in right now, the more prepared and equipped you will be for the next season of your life. A life of surrender is difficult and it’s not what our flesh wants, but remember what Jesus said in Matthew 16:24-25? “Then Jesus told
his disciples, if anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.” I have truly “found my life” so to speak. Yes, my days are filled with moment by moment surrender, but I feel so satisfied and my life is so full of joy and meaning in the midst of such surrender.
I know surrender in a way today that I did not know 10 years ago and I know that
I’ll know it in an even deeper way 10 years from now. God is so faithful to his children to continually bring us into life circumstances that cause us to fall on our knees and have no other alternative then to surrender our very lives to him!
Lose your life today and God says, you will FIND IT!