As Christians we talk about surrender all the time. But first, let’s define it. Our definition of surrender is very different from the world’s definition.
The dictionary definition of surrender is ‘to stop resisting to an enemy or opponent and to submit to their authority’, or someone more ‘powerful’ than you.
Some of this is true, we do submit someone in authority who is more powerful than us. And it is also true that we are enemies of God before we trust in Jesus. But really surrender something to God is giving the rightful power back to God. It’s realising that we aren’t in control and we can’t handle this and that only God can. Only he truly understands our struggles (which doesn’t mean we can’t emphasise with each other but we never will truly understand each other), and only he can change us in the mist of our struggles.
But more than that we are called to imitate Jesus, when he completely surrendered to the father when we died for us on the cross. We obviously don’t need to die on a roman cross, but we do need to live our lives into loving surrender. We surrender because we love Jesus not because we are being oppressed by him (because the opposite is true).
Therefore we have established that as christians we have given our entire lives to God, and surrendering everything to him is so important, but how often do we actually do it.
How often do we say we surrender something to him and then try and fix it our selves anyway, try to take it back into our own hands.
Sometimes this happens because we are impatient. Because we want change, the way we want it, now. We don’t want to wait for God, because that takes too long.
Other times because it seems to hard to do and giving up control seems to leave us exposed and anxious. But if we are anxious at giving something to God (which I often am), this directly means that we don’t want to give up the control. We don’t want to give up this part of us. We don’t want to give up this thing that comforts us or that gives our lives meaning (which again is ideal worship).
An example from my life would be giving up my suicidal ideation. Surrendering to God that I know it isn’t my decision to make and giving it to God. But the problem is, is that about 30 seconds after I surrender it I take it back.
But it can just as easily be surrendering a person to God. Surrendering a situation to or a relationship (which we should always do but it doesn’t mean that isn’t really hard)
It’s like physically giving someone something (I don’t really think of it as a gift) and taking it back off them. We wouldn’t really do this to other people but we do it to God all the time.
But there are several things wrong with this way of thinking.
First, we are saying that we know better than God, that we can deal with it better than he can. That this is too big for him to deal with. Which is pride and considering he made the universe doesn’t make any sense. But we do it all the time.
Secondly, we are putting what others say above what God says. We are putting them and their opinions above God’s. And our opinions change all the time, and Gods are everlasting and never ever change. His love for us never changes, and he doesn’t rank sin like we do. He always loves us and has already forgiven us. Every time you catch ourself doing this (I do all the time), ask for forgiveness and rest in the knowledge that we already has.