In movies that involve a battle scene, there is always a winner and a loser. The loser or the weaker opponent will eventually signal the battle’s end by raising a white flag. This sign messages the opponent of surrender. If you are the white flag-bearer, it probably takes every last bit of strength to concede to defeat. Losing is hard.
Last year I grieved my dream of becoming a published author. In the midst of trials we can become so focused on the details of our miseries it seems easier to just give up and raise a white flag of surrender. For a month I dropped my motivation to try my dream again and in the middle of it all, discouragement arrived quickly to hand me a rejection notice and the feeling of loss.
But the Lord is faithful.
He alone can bring new life out of something perceived dead. He is Lord and my Authority, and as a believer, I surrender my entire heart, soul, and mind to Him. Now I know there are those haters out there that will challenge this statement. Sometimes people think that they can control their life and bring the universe back in line with all things right and good. There are those who really believe that they can do a better job at running our universe. What I learned at ground zero, when all you can do is look up to God to help you, He helps in an instant but loves to help you overcome fears over time.
Last year, the mission team I was leading traveled to South Africa. We were going back to our host home one evening when something incredibly frightening and the unthinkable happened. All of the team except for me and two other hosts were in the car ahead of us. They signaled to make a right-hand turn on a very dark corner and a car that was passing broadsided the missionary’s car with the team inside. Coming up from behind the accident, I didn’t know who was dead or alive.
Fear arrived instantly.
All I could think of was to call down from Heaven to help us “NOW-NOW”. As a leader, you want your team safe and want to prevent any disasters from happening. There are so many details that can go wrong which can totally derail the mission you are on. The accident didn’t surprise God, however. He sent help immediately in the form of local helpers and missionaries to aid in the injuries and the road clean up.
God delivered us from evil even though fear was very present. One of the ladies, inside of the car, told me later that she was never afraid during the time they were waiting to get out. That’s an extreme peace that was very present. She was one who suffered a minor neck and shoulder injury. Another said she didn’t second guess what to do and all the muscle building exercises she did in the gym came in handy. She never felt weak in pushing vertically against a heavy car door to gain access out of the wrecked car.
Cue “Miss Freak-Out Queen”.
Calmly walking to the other side of the road (in the dark) I prayed and let the angels do the Father’s bidding. The Lord had a job for each of us and I feel in my heart that we held firm to our faith that night. God is who He says He is, and we can believe everything He says. He is greater than death and destruction, plus Jesus removed the sting of death at the grave! There’s a greater power at work in our lives. And this knowledge leads me to surrender my heart to know that even when I don’t understand all that happens in life, God is really good and He is really good at being God in ordering my life.
So I surrender my right to understand and simply accept life for what it hands me. There are seasons when it’s time to plant, sow and harvest. Every season involves a heart of trust to listen to the sole voice of God who calls you out of the darkness and leads you into His wonderful light. He will never steer you wrong or lead you astray. Even though distractions come and go the Lord goes after the one and brings His sheep back safely to the fold. He never judges or condemns you but lovingly guides along the best pathways in life. He acts on your behalf whenever you surrender your life to Him and give Him control of what you can’t.
You can’t control crazy.
However, you can control how you respond to and in moments of chaos. Controlling crazy chaos is a tall order and you don’t know all, see all, nor are you strong or mighty enough to save all. But God does it ALL in a perfect way. He orders our lives in perfect order too!
“For we don’t live for ourselves or die for ourselves. If we live, it’s to honor the Lord. And if we die, it’s to honor the Lord. So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.” Romans 14:7-8 (NLT) I repeat this verse often too. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight” Prov. 3:5-6 (NIV)
To know God is to love Him.
To know Him is to trust him in everything! If you trust Him then you will stop trying to control Him. Start cooperating with Him and surrender your control! It’s time to start waving the white flag and quit waging war alone. This only produces a false sense of security and strength. Let God lead you out of your own darkness into His wonderful light!!
There is freedom in surrender. Where do you need to trust Him more?