Mark 8:34-35 NIV Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it.
Surrendering our lives to Jesus is not an oath of perfection; it’s a statement of allegiance. It’s not just one moment in our lives. It’s a reorientation and alignment of our hearts to bring our minds, emotions, and wills into daily submission to his plan and purpose for us. Life is a journey in relationship with Jesus, following him each step of the way. We experience a life of freedom and fruitfulness through a succession of individual days of following him.
Learning to follow Jesus takes effort and practice, just like learning anything new. Starting each day with a prayer of surrender is a great way to keep the heart attuned to what God wants. It can be easy to get lost in our spiritual journey—disoriented about where we are or how to get back on track. We can get lost or stuck for various reasons, and we need a simple way to get back on the path. Some people wait for that to happen at the next church service or Bible study. Sometimes it takes a crisis. But we don’t to have to wait to re-calibrate in our journey.
Here is a daily and simple way to realign our hearts. If you’ve ever played any kind of sport, you know each one has its own “ready” or beginning position. It’s the prime starting position to do what comes next. For example, in basketball the ready position is called the triple threat position. From that stance, you are able to pass, shoot, or dribble when you have the ball. In short, you are ready for whatever next action is best.
Think of this prayer as the ready position for your daily journey. It’s a spiritual position of surrender to whatever action—go, do, say, or give—that Jesus asks of you that day, depending on the power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in you rather than just trying harder in your own strength.
The prayer is a simple way to align your heart with his, with your eyes focused on him, your feet set to follow him, and your hands ready to serve him in whatever way he leads you today.
If you haven’t already, will you bow before Jesus, and say that you’ll surrender to him, and in the power of the Holy Spirit you will go, do, say, and give for his honor and glory?
And now, make this a daily exercise of surrender to him. And why not share your decision with a friend and encourage them to do the same.
To Live Free of Fear, Surrender to God
By Rick Warren
“Surrender your heart to God, turn to him in prayer, and give up your sins—even those you do in secret. Then you won’t be ashamed; you will be confident and fearless. Your troubles will go away like water beneath a bridge, and your darkest night will be brighter than noon. You will rest safe and secure, filled with hope and emptied of worry” (Job 11:13-18 CEV).
The Bible says in 1 John 4:18, “Where God’s love is, there is no fear, because God’s perfect love drives out fear” (NCV).
How do you learn to live in God’s love so that you can live free of fear?
Every day, you have to surrender your heart to God.
When you wake up each morning, before your feet hit the floor, you have to say, “God, before I even start this day, I surrender my emotions to you. I want you to be Lord of my feelings. I want you to control my mind and my emotions. I surrender my heart to you. I want you to fill me with your love.”
Job 11:13-18 says, “Surrender your heart to God, turn to him in prayer, and give up your sins—even those you do in secret. Then you won’t be ashamed; you will be confident and fearless. Your troubles will go away like water beneath a bridge, and your darkest night will be brighter than noon. You will rest safe and secure, filled with hope and emptied of worry” (CEV).
We find three commands and eight promises in that verse. God says if you do this, then he’ll do that. Every promise has a premise.
First, he gives you the commands: Surrender your heart to God every day. Turn to him in prayer. And give up your sins, or confess your sins to God.
Then notice the eight benefits: You won’t be ashamed, you’ll be confident, you’ll be fearless, your troubles will be like water under the bridge, the dark night you’re going through is going to be brighter than noon, you’ll be able to sleep well because you are safe and secure, you will be filled with hope, and you’ll be emptied of worry.
Wow! Who wouldn’t want to experience those benefits? You ought to write that Scripture on an index card and put it somewhere you’ll see it throughout the week. Let it remind you to do those three things—surrender your heart to God, turn to him in prayer, and confess your sins—so that God’s love will fill your life and cast out all your anxiety and fear.