What Do You Mean “Surrender”?

“My son, give me your heart, and let your eyes observe my ways.”
– Proverbs 23:26
As Solomon shared insightful words of wisdom, he understood that surrendering the heart secures the soul.
Surrendering is not a willing reaction, it is a willful response.  We surrender when we give God our heart . . . our hurts . . . our hopes.  Surrender is unconditional.  Surrender is acknowledging that it’s all about Jesus Christ, and accepting that it’s not about me.  True surrender is total submission.
Jesus reminds us, “If anyone would come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me.” (Luke 9:23)
The pen-named Magdalene wrote, “The spiritual battle takes place in our minds, but the place we give Christ in our hearts determines our victory”  Paul emphasized to the faithful in Corinth, “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” (2 Cor 10:5)
In one of his letters, John instructs the followers of Jesus to keep themselves from idols.  Another translation says, “Dear children, keep away from anything that might take God’s place in your hearts.” (1 John 5:21 NLT)
My friend, Tierce Green presents a strategy of surrender . . . a “battle-plan” that will help us “keep away from anything that might take God’s place”.
Admit Our Struggles.  All of us struggle with an idol . . . an ideal or influence that isolates our heart from God.  The followers in Galatia were reminded, “The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions.” (Gal 5:17)  Talking with trustworthy friends can bring healing.  James tells us, “Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” (James 5:16)
Acknowledge The Lies.  Moses described the destructive damage of self-deceit.  He said, “But be careful. Don’t let your heart be deceived so that you turn away from the Lord and serve and worship other gods.” (Deut 11:16). Jesus clarifies the motive of our enemy as the “father of lies” (John 8:44) and his mission to “kill, steal and destroy”. (John 10:10)  The tempter’s lies tell us that we are condemned, that we are to weak or that God is not pleased with us.  These lies are like a stubborn weed that has to be removed by the root.
Apply God’s Truth.  Paul tells us that the only deterrent to conforming is transforming.  He writes, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Rom 12:2)  Jesus tells us, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:31-32)
One of the great hymns of the faith says it this way, “All to Jesus, I surrender.  All to Him, I freely give.”
Admit your struggle . . . Acknowledge the lies of the enemy . . . Apply God’s truth.
Give it to Him . . . SURRENDER!

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