“If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.”
It’s a silly saying, and yet very true. When a woman doesn’t get her way, she often makes herself and those around her miserable. Yet the trouble is, we forget that life isn’t about having everything fall perfectly into place. Life is messy. Complicated. Hard.
So far in our series on standing firm against the enemy and the pressures of this world, we’ve talked about the armor of God and power in prayer. Today, the challenge is all about complete submission to our Lord and Savior.
Our emotions, insecurities, and selfish hearts get us into trouble when we let them take over. Which is why, in order to stand firm in our faith and remain steady in a crazy world, we need to surrender each day, each moment, to God and let Him take care of everything. We need to be okay, when life is not okay.
We can’t let ourselves get uptight, stressed out, and tossed about when there is chaos all around us.
3 Ways to Surrender:
1. Accept God’s sovereignty. He created the universe – He gets to decide how He runs it. He sits on a Heavenly throne, and we sit in our recliners. We must choose to respect His position and humble ourselves before Him. We may wish that we could have what we want, we may be absolutely sure that our way is best, but ultimately our life journey is up to Him. Demanding our way or throwing fits when life gets complicated will only hinder our relationship with Him and make us miserable. Rather than fighting against Him, let’s wake up every day saying “God, You’re in charge, and I’m just fine with that.”
2. Embrace the uncomfortable. God calls us, coaxes us, and even pushes out of our comfort zone! He doesn’t want us to stay in one place. He doesn’t want us to play it safe. He wants us to be bold and brave. He puts challenges in our lives so we can grow. Sometimes its a consequence of a sin in our lives, and we need to repent and accept that we reap what we sow. Sometimes its a trial, such as financial struggles or a strained relationship and we just have to perverse. Sometimes its a loss, such as a death or someone close to us moving away, where we simply need to rest in Him.
And sometimes it’s a giant step of faith. Esther wasn’t comfortable when she dared approach the King to save her people. Sarah and Hannah were not comfortable when they were forced to wait many years to finally have a baby. Mary certainly wasn’t comfortable when she watched her oldest son die on a cross right in front of her. Yet God came through for all of them, after they faced the hard stuff.
3. Practice letting go. There is so much in life that doesn’t fit in a cute little package with a sparkly bow. Rather than dwelling on our problems, worrying or trying to figure things out, its best to leave them alone. Rather than holding onto our pain, sinking into self-pity or bitterness, it’s best to trust that God will turn all things for good. We can talk with Him about what’s bothering us, and then leave it in His hands and walk away. We trust Him by grasping His promises and intentionally focusing on something else besides our concern. Letting go takes practice, and we must say to Him every day “God, I refuse to think about this any more – I choose to lay this issue at the foot of Your throne and walk away.”
When we surrender, we choose to be calm and steadfast no matter what’s happening in our lives. We trust in God’s provision and believe His promises rather than letting our emotions, insecurities, or selfishness control our attitude and actions.
For more encouragement, check out our post on what it means to surrender.