My last post was the result of glimpsing with new clarity the truth that “all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to His purpose” (Rom. 8:28). It’s astounding what He does when we say “yes” to His ways, however frightening or inexplicable or confounding. And it’s that “yes” that I want to talk about today, specifically what that looks like in the practical of my daily life.
We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ…
2 Corinthians 10:5 NASB
This verse covers vast ground: responsibility, free-will, surrender, obedience, warfare, and love. (And that’s just as far as I’ve learned, so it’s likely that five years from now, there will be even more that the Lord’s shown me.) My mind has been the primary battleground in my life, and the violence in this verse (destroying, taking captive) is absolutely spot-on.
I can remember being so angry with God over this very verse. “Why did you even bother giving me a mind if you just want a bunch of automatons and sheeple to rule over?!” I wasn’t born-again at the time, so I couldn’t fathom who He really was or what this verse actually meant. After I was born-again, the question changed. “Why do I still struggle with doubt and anger at all? Why don’t you just take over my mind? Weren’t you supposed to renew it?” I hadn’t learned yet that the deepest love is complete freedom to choose—even if the choice is hell.
Thoughts do not just quietly submit, which is why they must be taken captive. In the beginning, I wrestled for days, sometimes weeks, with particularly insidious doubts and accusations. I fought, told myself to shut up, counterattacked with logic and reason, and sometimes said, “La-la-la, can’t hear you” until I was exhausted and questioning my own sanity. I thought that’s what it meant to take thoughts captive. I didn’t know that the work was surrender and not combat.
When God says to me, “I want you to do this for Me,” He rarely gives me the explanation. He’s told me what to do, and I’ve heard Him, so all that remains is my obedience. I choose to obey, or I choose to disobey. It’s at this moment that my mind becomes a battleground, particularly when I don’t really want to do what He’s asked. This is the crux of discipleship: will I go/do/be as God’s asked?
My fight is not combating the doubts, or assailing the enemy’s accusations. My fight is to choose Him over me. My “yes” to God is my surrender. His victory is my defeat—and that’s the paradox. I win when I lose.
These daily choices can seem so insignificant, but they are the building of my faith and the forging of my relationship with the actual Person of God. I meet Him in my daily grind. After each surrender comes a further seeing of who He is and how He loves me. And because He loves me, I am able to love Him. That Love is what girds me for the next battle. The daily choice to surrender my will to Him is, as Carole says, the building of the Foundation. And when life’s storms come, and they most certainly will, that Foundation is all that will stand fast.
And the rain fell and the floods came
and the winds blew and beat against that house;
yet it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock.
Matthew 7:25 AMP