Surrendering our lives to Jesus is not a trivial decision. It means leaving behind everything we have known and to place our trust in the hands of a God we’ve never seen. While “Surrendering your life to Christ” is a common phrase we hear in churches, I believe we do an insufficient job of explaining what such surrender means. Because surrender is a commonly understood word, I think we neglect to explain the ramifications of such a decision.
Complete surrender is not conditional. There are no areas of our lives we get to keep for ourselves. There are no aspects of our personality over which we maintain control. Complete surrender is the only acceptable way by which we can be called true disciples of Jesus.
I want to say up front, complete surrender does not mean perfect surrender. I am thankful God sees our heart and our commitment to Him. If we were to be judged based on the execution of our commitment, we’d all be in very deep trouble. Nothing in this post should be construed as me saying you must live in complete surrender every moment of your life or find yourself disqualified from an eternity with Jesus. On the flip side, I am also not saying we can profess surrender with our lips and go on living as if nothing has changed. Again, God knows your heart. He recognizes our true desires and sees through any façade we attempt to construct.
Complete surrender is more work than any of us assumed when we made our commitment to Christ. It’s more than changing a few of our habits and associations. Have you ever taken the time to contemplate what complete surrender means? Have you considered all the implications it has for your life? Outward habits and activities are obvious and easy targets. But surrendering your internal thoughts and attitudes is where the demanding work begins.
Living in complete surrender to Jesus means our thoughts must become like His. Everything we see must be seen through His eyes. It means we take no action He would not take. All our preconceived notions about people, places, and things, are thrown out the window. Every second of our lives becomes about Christ. When you are all alone, what do you think about? Is it honoring to God? Have you actually surrendered your thoughts to Christ? How about when you encounter someone different from yourself? What is your initial reaction? Is it one Jesus would have? Are you surrendered to Christ in this area?
Complete surrender is impossible except for the grace of God. We could never do it on our own. It is a process we will never complete, but one we must always be pursuing. We must be ready for whatever He gives us to do – and pray we will be ready! We must accept all that comes into our lives – and pray we will accept it! Complete surrender means wanting only His will to be done in our life. It means asking for nothing but Himself. He is enough. Are you willing to live in complete surrender?