Pride. Fear. Anxiety. Panic. Worry.
I knew I had to let these go. So I kept trying and trying and working so hard to let them go. I prayed and I pounded my fists. I fasted and I cried. I shouted, “I don’t want these sins anymore! I’m tired of being ruled by all of this ugliness!”
Ironically, all the work I’ve put into letting go of pride, fear, and anxiety through the years has left me a bit more prideful (look at what I’ve conquered!), more fearful (but what if it comes back?), and more anxious (I’m still not sure I’m doing this right.). Why? Because I was trying to do the work myself. I wanted to be better for Christ. So I worked and I fought and I struggled and I worked harder to be a better Christian. I would think: I’ve got this! I’m going to follow that advice I just heard. I’m going to go by the suggestions in that book. I’m going to just buckle down and work harder. I can do this!
The more I fought, the more difficult my battles became. The more steeped in sin I sunk. The more exhausted and defeated I felt. So frequently I would think, “Why can’t I just stop being so freaked out all the time? Why can’t I just relax? Why? Why? What am I doing wrong?”
The answer came when I finally shut-up. When I finally waved the white flag to the One who has already won the battle for me and was begging for me to be still and sit calmly in his pool of peace.
Surrender. Oh, sweet surrender. Such a simple, easy answer. Such a basic and quiet act. The very work I had been laboring over had already been done for me. All that was left was for me to stop, breathe, and recognize that I needed to surrender my self to my Savior.
All of this, Lord. I give it to you. All of my yuck. All of my fear. All that threatens to control me and pull me into my self-seeking ways. The only work required, the only action I must take, is the simple task of surrender.
Let go. I had to recognize that my own strength and desire, hard work and determination would not achieve the peace I was looking for.
Peace can only come through surrender.
Lay it down. Give it up.
It is so hard to let go of control. And yet I have found that by trying to hold on to control – I become crazily out of control. While working so hard to be and to do, I accomplish very little.
It has become a theme for me, a newly found word, a beautiful recognition of what God asks of me. Surrender.
God promises, “Let me heal you. Let me make you into what I am calling you to be. Let me. Let me. I’ve got you.”
Peace. Comfort. Joy. The beautiful blessings that follow surrender.
Upon recognizing this and experiencing the peace that came once I surrendered my sins and my self to Jesus, was the battle now over for me? In some ways, yes. But in other ways, my real fight was just beginning.