When I sit quietly in the stillness of prayer, my heart is filled with a profound truth that has rocked my world.
This small yet mighty word has reshaped my understanding of faith and my walk with God.
During the years of caring for my special-needs daughter, Courtney, the phrase “Lean into the hard” often echoed from our doctors and therapists. Initially, I resented these words, knowing they foretold struggle and discomfort. In this role of service, I relinquished control, learning to love my girl unconditionally, regardless of my mood.
Gradually, my resistance waned, and I found joy in facing challenges, repeatedly letting go of my desire for control. Did it become easier? Not really, but it became a familiar part of life. “ Familiar” originates from the Latin “familiaris,” meaning “of a family,” denoting intimacy and household relations, signifying something well-known or frequently encountered.
The more familiar I became with hearing God’s voice and knowing his Word, the less resistance there was to surrender.
The word ‘surrender’ originates from the Old French ‘surrendre’, meaning to ‘give up, deliver over’. In our modern lives, it’s easy to think we have control, but in truth, so much is beyond our grasp. Surrender, in the spiritual sense, isn’t about defeat; it’s about acknowledging that true peace and direction come from God, not our own efforts.
I’ve learned over the years that surrendering to God doesn’t mean giving up on life; it means embracing life fully, but with open hands. It’s about trusting that the same God who whispered the stars into existence is whispering a unique purpose and mission into each of our lives. It’s a journey of letting go of our illusions of control and allowing God to guide us, mold us, and use our lives for His greater glory.
It’s a journey of letting go of our illusions of control and allowing God to guide us, mold us, and use our lives for His greater glory.
This act of repetitive surrender has changed me.
It has brought me closer to God, deepened my faith, and given me a peace that surpasses all understanding. In surrender, I’ve found strength, not weakness; freedom, not confinement. I’ve discovered that in letting go, I am held more closely than ever by the One who loves us most. I often draw strength from Isaiah 46:4, a verse that reminds me surrendering isn’t defeat, but an act of faith and acceptance of life’s difficulties. Surrender is vulnerable and daunting, requiring trust and practice.
Often, we seek an instruction manual for surrender, wishing for a guarantee that everything will be alright. We ask Jesus to “take the wheel,” not realizing we never truly held it.
I’ve learned I’m not in control; everything is in God’s hands. My journey of surrender involves moments of resistance, finally collapsing into God’s arms, exhausted and scared, only to hear His comforting words, “I’m here, I’ve got you.” In surrender, I find freedom to express my pain and hardship openly.
Doubt creeps in at times, and I recall Mark 9:20-23, reminding myself that faith enables us to confront our trials, knowing they serve a greater purpose.
I encourage you to explore this beautiful act of surrender. Open your heart to God’s plan, trusting that His ways are higher than ours. Surrender your fears, your plans, and your dreams, and watch how He can turn them into something far greater than we ever imagined.
I continue to be amazed at how gentle God is with his redirection and encouragement to just let go and allow Him to remain in the driver’s seat. Is there something you’ve been holding onto tightly that you can release into His loving hands? Embrace the peace and transformation that surrender can bring, drawing us closer to God and His divine plan for our lives.
It’s a game-changer.
I love this surrender prayer:
Take, Lord, and receive all my liberty,
My memory, my understanding
And my entire will,
All I have and call my own.
You have given all to me.
To you, Lord, I return it.
Everything is yours; do with it what you will.
Give me only your love and your grace.
That is enough for me.
Prayer of St. Ignatius of Loyola
Image courtesy of Unsplash.