September 20, 2009

Are We Ready to Surrender?

Romans 12:1-2

Submit yourselves, then, to God.
James 4:7


“All to Jesus I surrender; all to him I freely give.” These words are part of a hymn that many Christians have sung throughout the past century.

Like many other songs, it’s easy to sing but very difficult to put into practice.

To submit or surrender ourselves to God is one of the hardest things in life because it means recognizing that God is really the one in control. Most of us prefer to think we are in charge and that we call the shots ourselves. We want to determine the outcome of our lives. We easily get bitter when the road through life takes a different turn from what we had planned.

This explains why we often struggle with losing an ability we once had. It explains the difficulty for elderly people who can’t do what they used to do and have to rely on others for help even with basic tasks. For many of us it takes a lifetime to reach the point where we are willing to offer our “bodies as a living sacrifice … to God,” as Paul teaches in our reading for today.

To have God’s peace and the security God wants for us, we have to submit. If we want to be what God intends for us, we have to learn to submit.

Do you want to live a life that’s filled with purpose and meaning? Ask God today to give you the grace to submit to him!

Lord our God, you know how reluctant we are to turn our lives over to you. Please give us the grace to surrender all to you today. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

About the author — Arthur J. Schoonveld

Rev. Art Schoonveld is a retired minister in the Christian Reformed Church. Before retiring in 2001, he served churches in California, Illinois, and Michigan. Since his retirement he has worked part-time for the denomination and has served as an interim pastor. Art and his wife, Anita, have four children and nine grandchildren.

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