I’m just a girl. I write from my heart and I write about what Jesus lays on my heart. That’s it. It’s that simple and that complicated. I’m no theologian. I’m certainly no pastor. I’m not a great leader. But I love God with all my heart. That’s the hardest and easiest thing in the world.
The picture I’m attaching to this post is one of my all time favorite pictures. It’s me – being baptized. How I remember that full week! Sure, I got absolutely soaked – but I also felt the love overflowing from God in ways I had never imagined possible.
Jesus chased me from when I was a teen. I remember His presence a couple of times and how He was urging me to let Him in. I foolishly rejected Him because I was afraid; my family would ridicule people of any religion, my friends probably would stop being my friends, Christians were boring (or so I thought) etc… He went away and I lived a fast life full of loud music, dancing, boys, long nights… no, I never did drugs but I suppose you could say that I saw the better part of the nights during those years. I would leave home Friday evening around 9 pm and return around 5 or 6 am. Sleep most of the day and do the same the following night. And I was miserable. I learned many lessons the hard way. Looking back, I have no idea how I managed to make it through school and even less understanding of why my parents allowed me, but then again, they perhaps would have been unable to stop me anyway.
It was rather late in life when I surrendered to Jesus. I was 38. Not as late as many others when they come to faith, but for someone who has known Jesus calling since teenage years, I was a slow poke! The Lord moved me away from my family. 10.000 kilometers to be more exact. But there He began a slow but gradual work. I’m humbled to the core of my heart when I look back and I can see how God has moved in my life just to reach me. Tearjerking.
I didn’t intend to write my testimony here, but knowing a bit about my background might help understand what surrender means to me. The one who has been forgiven much, loves much – as Jesus pointed out after the woman of ill repute washed His feet with her tears, wiped them with her hair and poured expensive perfume on Him. When it comes to surrender, I feel I strongly relate to that girl.
Now – the surrender part…
I often find myself in the midst of “surrender” conversations with fellow believers and hear how they deal with it and struggle with it and it made me ask the question, if surrender looks the same to each person. As for me, it’s a clear all or nothing surrender. But for many others it’s a small part of themselves they lay at His feet. e.g. their longing to control things or life. The struggle seems to be that whatever was left at His feet, comes back to them. At least most of the time though not all the time. So I suppose my next obvious question would be; was it totally surrendered to Him in the first place. Surely I believe it’s possible to leave parts (e.g. control, pride, gossip) at His feet, as we are all individually created and thus, we have different ways, and – God is in control of it all whether we lay it down for Him or not. But He does ask for a total surrender and surrendering parts have me wondering if that in reality isn’t really more of a repentance (which is good!) than a surrender. I don’t have the answer to that!
I’m not pointing a finger at anyone here, but I am struggling with this subject. I know in my heart that I have totally surrendered and submitted to my Lord. But, if a day comes and my daughter or husband’s life is in danger – can I then honestly say that it’s okay for this is His will? If they are saved then yes, I believe I can. Not claiming I will find it easy because I guarantee you I will not! But if they are not saved, then… ouch.
Do we need to be surrendered for our prayers to be answered? Perhaps not. God is sovereign and He answers prayers according to His will. Does it not require a willingness to surrender for Him to answer a prayer of surrender? Even Jesus when he went off to a solitary place to pray and communicate with our Father would do so to hear the Fathers will. Even in Gethesemane, Jesus prayed “your will, not mine”.
I have a lot to say about prayer and I would love to keep writing – but for now, I will post this and then prepare breakfast for my husband, who is on his way home on the 8 hour long night bus drive, after his first week in Tatsuno as tanshin funin (provider living away from home). He surely deserves a good healthy breakfast and we have missed him!
In Jesus – my Lord I pray blessings into the life of everyone who reads this. May you all surrender to the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and mine.