Imagine going about your regular routine; school, work, recreation… You believe in the truth of Scripture and desire to do God’s will. You know that God requires obedience and you understand that with it may come a need to surrender parts of your life that you hold as valuable. Then one day God reveals the unfathomable. He asks you to trust him with something that has never even occurred to you before and simply does not make sense. You know God is sovereign but deep within, the logical side of your brain can’t understand how this “ask” could ever come to fruition. You go through a series of questions, doubts, and fears. As you honestly reveal your emotions, you continue to hear the words, “Trust Me. I love you.” You finally come to a point where you are able to stop, acknowledge God’s presence and omnipotence, and find peace. You recall Scripture such as Isaiah 43:3 saying you are precious to God, Romans 8:17 stating you are a co-heir of Christ, 1 Peter 2:9 declaring you are chosen royalty, Exodus 19:5 affirming you are a treasured possession, John 15:15 announcing you are a friend of Christ and Psalm 139 proclaiming you are fearfully and wonderfully made. With this awesome understanding, you suddenly experience a wave of God’s unconditional love. The idea of releasing a protected area of your life no longer carries with it fear, doubt, and trepidation but rather a sweetness of having come to a point of fully embracing the depths of God’s love and stepping forward in surrender to his will. You know there will be a cost; you will be asked to sacrifice, but the recognition of who God says you are and the magnitude of his love is so overwhelming that you not only now have a willingness to surrender, but you actually desire to do so. Surrender has become an invitation to receive God’s love and experience your true self; the self that God declares you to be.

Author David Benner says, “Daring to accept myself and receive love for who I am in my nakedness and vulnerability is the indispensable precondition for genuine transformation…Only love can inspire acts of genuine self-sacrifice. Only love can free us from the tyrannizing effects of fear…Christ does not simply want our compliance. He wants our heart. He wants our love and he offers us his. He invites us to surrender to his love.” It is when we fully receive, embrace and live out this love of God that we are able to sacrifice and surrender to his perfect plan; even if that plan seems unfathomable.

In Luke 1:38, we see Mary expressing a willingness to sacrifice, embrace the unfathomable, and declare herself as a servant of God, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” Mary had found her identity in her willingness to surrender.

In what or whom do you place your identity? Do sacrifice and service sound like an invitation to experience an abundant life or do those words fill your soul with fear and uncertainty? Are you ready to step out in faith and fully surrender to God’s good and perfect love?

Lynette Fuson
Director of Care & Counseling

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