How y’all doin?
This week I want to talk a bit about surrender and I’m just gonna say it, surrender is difficult. Surrender is especially difficult now, in the culture we have. I hear a lot of, “You do you” and “Do what makes you happy” and “Do what’s best for you.” I don’t know about you, but I hear a lot of “me me me” happening and although it sounds good and loving, it actually can get you pretty confused (and backwards about what it means to live a happy life).
In life we hear the word surrender a lot, however, it’s almost always just about giving up or the result of the surrender is a big loss. We see it in sports; you surrender, you lose. We see it in fights and wars; you surrender, you lose. We see it in bad leadership and authority; you surrender, you lose. So with those examples, it’s no wonder we cringe at the word ‘surrender’ and want to do the opposite or we do it because we feel obligated and oppressed. However, that’s the worldly opinion of what surrender is and so I looked at what it means to God and for us.
Surrender in the bible happened before we even did anything (well we were really doing all the wrong things) but the first person to surrender the most was Jesus. To give us an idea of how much He gave up, let’s picture this for a second. Imagine you live in the most beautiful house; you have love all around you, you have more than enough food, clothing, and you hang out with your friends everyday – you are thriving. I mean, I’m sure Jesus was having a good time in Heaven before He came down to earth, right? Now imagine you have a friend that has lost contact with you. Maybe they have been rejecting you or reading your texts and not responding. Later you realize they have been spreading rumours about you and have been a really bad friend. Now, if you were given the chance to take away all their anger, sadness, and pain that they’re going through but it meant you had to leave your life behind, would you do it? You would be homeless, have people hate you, friends betray you, and die a horrible, painful death. All while living blamelessly and loving everyone around you. Even just typing this out made me say, “Wowwww, I definitely couldn’t do that…” a bunch of times. This was Jesus’ life and it just screams surrender when you read about it in the Bible. If Jesus, 1/3 of the Trinity, all powerful, blameless, could give up all that He did for a people that didn’t even like Him (or know) Him, then how can we see surrender as something weak when it’s for God?
Have you ever noticed how hard it is to even say sorry or to forgive people/situations that have hurt you? You see, the phrases, “You do you” and “Do what makes you happy” sometimes sound like good ideas when we have been hurt badly as a way to put ‘armour’ on and protect ourselves – a defence mechanism. We think that just doing what we think is best for our lives will minimize the hurt. It’s painful when you give up a lot for someone and it feels like they let you down or don’t care as much as you do. Yet, God understands that more than anyone and surrender to Him looks different.
In Colossians, Paul is writing to some new Christians in a city called Colosse and he talks a lot about what living for God looks like. In chapter 2:6-23, he mentions that giving your life to Christ and surrendering things to Him brings freedom and that the rules or things that sound nice are actually traps that can “capture” you.
“Don’t let anyone capture you with empty philosophies and highsounding nonsense that come from human thinking and the from the spiritual powers of this word…”
That’s hard to wrap your head around when the things make you feel good or are pleasurable in the moment. Sooner or later though it will be a surrender that leaves you with a loss. Surrendering to Jesus means a new life, new mercies every morning for the mistakes we make. It means continual love and freedom when we choose to bring our problems to Him.
In my life, I’ve been stubborn in choosing to bring stuff to Him as I’m not one to share or want to talk about my problems. Sometimes healing happens when we confess those things to Godly people in our life but that’s hard to do. Jesus is always waiting for you with open arms at the end of that surrender and He died so that we could live without them weighing us down.
My hope for all you guys is that you get to experience the freedom and peace that comes from surrendering things to Jesus – letting Him into your heart and into the situations that you’re struggling with! Know that if you feel like you need to tell someone about something that’s been bothering you (or that you’ve been going through), we as leaders are here with open arms for you guys. Trust me, the fear of someone seeing what you’ve done doesn’t compare to the joy that comes from being free from that guilt. To have someone say, “You are still loved and I still love you.” You can’t phase God and you can’t phase us 😉 but anyway, love you guys!
Have a good rest of your week!