I sat there in “worship” and noticed the weirdest thing: I wasn’t fighting. It was quiet on the inside. I was surrendered. I struggled to remember the last time I had known such peace. The last time I had brought my heart to Him so openly. The children and teachers around me were doing their thing. I was realizing I actually wanted to follow Him. Being a sheep and going where He wanted sounded like good things. It had been a really long time since they had seemed like a good thing to my entire being that is at this point known to me. For so long, a part of me was fighting hard and filled with fear of greater surrender to Him and a narrower way.
Oddly, I don’t even remember what the teaching was about that caused me to realize I had quit fighting with God over the next step in my growth. I just know it felt good and odd. It was awesome to come home from work and sit on my bed during quiet time, truly surrendered to having Him change my heart.
As I have begun to relish this feeling of surrender and openness to God, I have reflected back on my journey with Him. When was the last time that I had brought Him all of my known being so openly? When was the last time I came to Him so willingly and openly in prayer to have Him change whatever needed to be changed in my heart? When was the last time I would so willingly follow Him wherever He led?
The answer wasn’t last month. It wasn’t six months ago. It wasn’t a year. It wasn’t five years. The best I can come up with honestly is either nine or ten years. Now I have been saved only twelve years. I am celebrating my spiritual birthday this month actually. So basically I have spent most of my walk with Christ fighting with Him over whether I really have to take that next step. It is a really stressful way to live.
It’s not that I haven’t grown. I have just been reluctant to grow. I keep answering Him with “I will not…”. Then later I change my mind and go. According to Jesus, that is better than saying “I will…” and then changing my mind and not going. But I wonder how pleasant life would be if I said, “Yes, Lord, I will…” and then humbly went?
Why did the fight end? Well, at some point in the last two weeks, I realized what my current greatest fear in surrendering completely to God was. I am assuming realizing this had a lot to do with it. In any case, it was so pleasant to actually be asking my counselor for all the things I could do to facilitate the growth process. It’s not that I had been consciously trying to make my life miserable or the life of those around me miserable; it’s just that I was so afraid of this imaginary thing that could happen if I kept following God that I was seriously getting in the way of living a productive and peace-filled life.
During this time, before and after the surrender, I have been quietly praying the words of the hymn “bind my wandering heart to Thee.” Without God pursuing me, there really is no hope for our relationship. My heart seems to so quickly wander. I seem to so quickly think that making my own name great or living in such a way as to make myself feel powerful is the answer to a successful life. I desperately need Him to bind my heart to His. It is so good to finally surrender.
Do you ever say “I will not…” to God, then later change your mind and obey? or do you often respond to Him with “I will…” and then don’t follow through with your commitment to follow? In which area of your life are you currently fighting His voice?