By Mike (Guest writer)
(This is a follow-up to Mike’s last writing on surrender, “What Exactly is Surrender,” posted on February 5, 2014.)
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”
I figured surrendering would be a relatively easy thing to do. After all, you just have to relinquish your rights and that’s it, right? As I started to hit some initial roadblocks, the Lord started speaking to me about trust. He was bringing me to these roadblocks to expose areas in my life where I was not surrendered because ultimately, I did not trust Him. The road of surrender cannot be traveled unless there is absolute trust. At the core, it is about a trust exchange. I must exchange trust in self, for trust in Him.
Before surrender comes trust, but before trust comes the absolute knowing that God is altogether good. Any part of me that remains in doubt about the goodness of God is a part of my life that I am still seeking to control. Doubting the goodness of God is the very lie planted by the enemy. If I let any seed of doubt remain, it will reap destruction. If I choose to control a situation instead of surrendering it to God, I will simply bring about exactly what I was trying to prevent. Truly, I’ll work tirelessly to prevent a situation and then agonize as I see it unfold exactly as I dreaded. Surrender to the Lord is the only safe place; it’s the only way to ensure the eternal safety of what I truly desire.
My journey to surrender has taken some devastating detours. As a self-professed family man, one of the most intense detours I have encountered is when the Lord asked me to surrender the parenting of my teenage daughter. The Lord showed me that I was a major contributing factor in creating the behavior that I truly despised. Now that was hard to swallow. He showed me that my parenting philosophy was inherently flawed because I have believed the lie of the enemy that I know how to parent her. Because of that, I was praying about my daughter’s behavior but not my behavior.
The Lord has literally flipped my parenting philosophy on its head by asking me to surrender my authority over her. I have but one chance to raise this child, and my time with her is growing shorter each moment. The Lord is asking me to surrender my most cherished one, and my most significant responsibility, to trust that He knows how to bring up this child. I’ve had to accept that I am simply the vessel of His parenting. The Spirit is telling me to simply be what I want her to become and surrender my parenting to Him.
The detours have taken me to the depths of my heart where the lie of the enemy is rooted. I’m wrecked as I see how tightly I’m holding to my life and the lives of those I love. I feel the fear of the Lord as I walk through the process of surrendering, believing that my God is a good God, and relinquishing all I WANT to happen in my life and my relationships. I have decided that I want God more than I want what I want.
I will choose to surrender all to You, God, and let You direct my paths.