“Surrender” is an unpopular word, disliked almost as much as the word “submission.” It implies losing, and no one wants to be a loser.
Surrender evokes the unpleasant images of admitting defeat in battle, forfeiting a game, or yielding to a stronger opponent. The word is almost always used in a negative context. Captured criminals surrender to the authorities.
In our competitive world, we’re taught to never quit trying, never give up, and never give in, so we don’t hear much about surrendering. If winning is everything, surrendering is unthinkable.
Yet, the Bible teaches us that rather than trying to win, succeed, overcome, and conquer, we should instead yield, submit, obey, and surrender.
And by surrendering to God, we enter into the heart of worship. This is true worship, bringing pleasure to God as we give ourselves completely to him.
Surrendering is best demonstrated in obedience as we cooperate with our Creator. We say, "Yes, Lord" to whatever he asks of us.
In fact, "No, Lord" is a contradiction. We can’t claim Jesus as our Lord when we refuse to obey him. Peter modeled surrender when, after a night of failed fishing, Jesus told him to try again: "Master, we've worked hard all night and haven't caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets." Surrendered people obey God’s Word, even when it doesn’t make sense.
God is not a cruel slave driver or a bully who uses brute force to manipulate us into submission. He doesn’t try to break our will but draws us to himself so that we might offer it freely to him. God is a Lover and a Liberator, and surrendering brings freedom, not bondage.
When we completely surrender ourselves to Jesus, we discover that he is not a tyrant but a savior; not a boss, but a brother; not a dictator, but a friend.
My challenge for us today is to enter into true worship to God by choosing to live a surrendered life to Jesus Christ!
In His Grip
Pastor Matt Meadows