What do you do when you don’t get what you want from God even after doing all the “right” things – praying, tithing, sacrificial giving, applying anointing oil, having the most anointed person on earth pray and lay hands on you and even fasting for many days? What do you do when you are in a fierce battle against what you truly believe to be the forces of darkness only to realize you are actually up against God Himself? For me the only option is to surrender, and I’m not alone.
When Joshua was near the town of Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with sword in hand. Joshua went up to him and demanded, “Are you friend or foe?” “Neither one,” he replied. “I am the commander of the Lord’s army.” At this, Joshua fell on his face to the ground in reverence. “I am at your command,” Joshua said. “What do you want your servant to do?” The commander of the Lord’s army replied, “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy.” And Joshua did as he was told. (Joshua 5:13-15)
A typical dictionary meaning of surrender is to relinquish possession, control or use of (something) to another; agree to stop fighting, hiding, or resisting – typically on compulsion or demand because you know that you will not win or succeed.
Rick Warren says, “Surrendering your life to God means following God’s lead without knowing where he’s sending you; Waiting for God’s timing without knowing when it will come; Expecting a miracle without knowing how God will provide; Trusting God’s purpose without understanding the circumstances.”
“You know you’re surrendered to God”,Rick continues, “when you rely on God to work things out instead of trying to manipulate others, force your agenda, and control the situation. You let go and let God work. You don’t have to always be in charge. Instead of trying harder, you trust more. You also know you’re surrendered when you don’t react to criticism and rush to defend yourself.” I believe a total surrender to the will of God is the ultimate mature attitude every believer must thrive to attain.
The first reason why we should surrender to God’s will is because God desires the best for us. We start enjoying wonderful things in our lives from the moment we completely yield to God’s will. God brings the best in us when we are in a “deep sleep” as it was in the case of Adam. Supernatural power starts to operate in us as soon as our innate ability runs out. That is why before Hecan start any great work in us God must first “sedate” and wear us down.
Another reason why we should surrender is because we simply can’t win against God. God’s will always stand- nothing on earth, nothing in hell or in heaven can prevent the will of God from being fulfilled. Trying to persuade God to change His mind is simply a waste of time. That means to surrender is a level of maturity that doesn’t come easy. By nature surrender comes on compulsion, demand or subduction by a superior power. After a bold stand off, hard fight and stiff resistance against adversity we finally decide to surrender after realizing we are up against God Himself. In Jesus’ case, he agonized so much over God’s plan that he sweated drops of blood. Even though Jesus was God’s Son, the Bible says, he learned obedience from the things he suffered. (Hebrews 5:8)
The supreme example of self-surrender is Jesus. The night before his crucifixion Jesus surrendered himself to God’s plan. He prayed, “Father, everything is possible with you. Please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I need your will, not mine” (Mark 14:36 NLT). Jesus surrendered himself to God’s will. He prayed, “God, if it is on your best interest to remove this suffering, please do so. But if it fulfils your purpose, that’s what I want, too.”
Genuine surrender says, “Father, if this problem, pain, sickness, or circumstance are needed to fulfil your purpose and glory in my life or in another’s life, please don’t take it away!”