Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Walking in Surrender

All to Jesus, I surrender;
All to him I freely give;
I will ever love and trust him,
In his presence daily live.

I surrender all, I surrender all,
All to Thee, my Blessed Savior,
I surrender all.*

I grew up knowing the words by heart, singing them with the passion only a child-like heart can possess.

Do you remember the first day of true surrender to Jesus? I do. Having known him and, in a simple and shallow way, loved him since before I could remember, my first day of real surrender happened when I was 30.  I had lived a lot of life under my own direction, but that day, very clear in my memory, I began the journey into walking in surrender.

I remember thinking of that moment as a marker for many years after. Yes, I HAVE surrendered my life to my Savior. It is done. But, no. It isn't done. Surrender happens in layers, with every moment of decision, with the worries of day-to-day life, with the devastating and the small. Surrender happens when I choose not to obsess, when I make decisions that are counter-cultural, focused on God's economy. And just when I think I've surrendered one or another area in my life, the next layer becomes clear. There is always more that I must surrender.

To yield. Just to yield. That is my heart's desire. All the while my heart fights back, along with my body and my mind and all my humanness. Paul's battle is my own.

"For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out." Romans 7:18b (NIV)

As it turns our, everyday is another opportunity just to walk in surrender.

All to Jesus I surrender;
Humbly at his feet I bow,
Worldly pleasures all forsaken;
Take me, Jesus, take me now.*

I Surrender All - hymn written by Judson W. Van DeVenter

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