Have you contemplated much the word surrender?
Well, as our time to leave draws closer, this word keeps coming into my thoughts. My heart is so often drawn to the things of this world; Grandchildren, and my children, friends who are more like Sisters, fall temperatures and colors. And yet as I was reading in Matthew 8:18-22 this morning I was once again counting the cost of following Jesus. Right there in the first verse Jesus says "go". And then the scribe says "I will follow". And then a disciple says "Lord, let me first ..." Well, my heart is most always like the disciple's heart. Each morning, it's surrendering again my life to "go, follow" where ever God leads. And then of course the clincher is Jesus saying "Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their dead." Jesus is asking me to surrender to Him, to give Him my first allegiance over the things of this world, even Grandchildren, children, sisters and the comforts of home. I hear strongly His calling but I must confess my flesh (SELF) often gets in the way. My heart is often torn as I think of one of my dear sisters whose husband is going to Afghanistan for a year, and another precious sister who is just pregnant, oh how I would love to be here for the birth and to help her. And yet Jesus says "follow and go". So each morning it's a new surrender of my life. The things of this earth won't matter in eternity. The comforts that we enjoy here will be nothing compared to Heaven. Can I surrender? Can I trust Jesus? Can I believe in faith that He knows best for me? Well, it's only His grace that equips me to do His bidding. And I am so often reminded of how abundant His grace was during our last term and that He will supply it abundantly this term as well, but not in advance, only as I need it. So, what a sweet peace there is to surrender, to laying my life in His hands to do with as He sees fit. I know He'll take care of those Grandkids, Lindsey, my sisters, He doesn't need me in the least in any of their lives. He only wants me to surrender a greater allegiance to Him than to the things of this world. He wants command of my life and total surrender, and Jesus doesn't like to share that with the pulls of my heart. What a joy it is to give it all to Him in faith trusting Him and only Him and then I am more able and willing to :go", to "follow" and to drop the "let me first". Oh isn't He worth total surrender of my life? I so often focus on my own life and SELF, SELF, SELF and it only takes a quick glimpse at Jesus's willingness to come to earth and leave His Kingship for me, His willingness to suffer in so many ways for me and then of course His willingness to die that awful death on the cross for me, His willingness to be separated from His Father, total separation when He had known only being a part of the Trinity with God and the Holy Spirit, and then His willingness to bear God's wrath for my sins, which I deserve, upon Himself.
Will you ponder this word "surrender" in your own life with me? Maybe there is something that you are holding onto too tightly. Maybe there is something that is dividing your heart as mine is so often divided. Maybe the comforts and "stuff" of this world are pulling your heart. He only wants you and your total unconditional surrender and He will take care of the rest. The picture may not be exactly as we would have painted but it will be even better and more glorious if we allow Him to carry the masterpiece to completion as we daily surrender to Him!