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Posts Tagged ‘surrender’

David is one of those characters that I can relate to well. He reminds me of me. David is a strong willed guy who can be pretty self-sufficient. On numerous occasions, David took control of his summit hike. It did not bode so well for him, but he learned a ton of character a long the way.

David was the youngest in his family. He was not so admired by his siblings. This part of the story sounds similar to Joseph’s story. David spent his days as a shepherd in the field, as well as a song writer. He was often excluded from family discussions, or anything that was going on with family business.

One day Samuel comes to visit David’s father, Jesse. I picture the scene playing out similar to that of Cinderella. Samuel is looking to anoint someone to be the next king. He asks Jesse for all of his sons to join him in the house. Like the wicked step-mom, Jesse presents his finest sons. Samuel asks if he has any others, Jesse says, “oh yea there’s my youngest David.”

In my mind the next scene goes something like this: David walks into the house, probably singing a song out loud that he made up. He dances his way into the kitchen where everyone is standing. I can picture David popping a date in his mouth from off the counter top while playing his air harp. His voice fades as he realizes that he walked in on something. Samuel presents David with the glass slipper that fits perfectly and anoints him to be the next king.

Wait what!? If I were David, I would be like, “what just happened?” It’s not like he was then ushered off to the palace and given a ring and robe. Nope. David returned to the field for shepherding and song writing. So how does the dream of being king even happen?

Cue David’s road of wonder.

After some time, maybe even when the dream of king had almost been lost, the tides change. David is sent with a picnic for his warrior brothers. It is on the battlefield that David is presented with an opportunity that makes him one step closer to his summit. David takes on a huge obstacle named Goliath and brings victory to the nation. With this win, David is then ushered to the palace where he is given fame and the one of the kings daughters to marry.

This is the first glimpse we get to David’s dream of being king. Before David ever stepped foot in the palace, God did some character work on him in the fields. God cultivated the character trait of faith in a bigger God. God taught David how to not rely on his own strength. This is a big character lesson for self-sufficient people. It was in the “simple” sheep fields that he learned to care about responsibility, protect the innocent, rise above his fear, and grow in intimacy with his God.

After Goliath, it might have seemed like David “arrived.” He was in the palace, and now son-in-law to the king. Break out the champagne! Sound the alarm for the party, King David had made it to the palace!

But was he king?

David might have been in the palace, but he was far from being king. After a triumphant entry into his new life, he then spent his days playing his harp for the king. David went through more time of waiting for his dream. He could see his dream, but he was playing the harp. Maybe God let David know that even though he was in the palace, he was not too good to play his harp and serve the king. God cultivated his character.

David went through a seasons of taking the reigns of his path, but God cultivated his character every step of the way. At the time David was given the throne, he was ready. Just because he was given the dream years before the actual throne did not mean he was ready for the dream.

How do you take control of your path?

How is God cultivating your character?

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I have these little things called self-sufficiency and independence that seem to be the thorns in my side. I think I popped out of the womb as “Miss Independent.”

As far back as I can remember I have always fought to do my own thing. I thought I could teach myself how to ride a bike, climb trees, play sports, tie my shoes, and pretty much anything my older brother was doing.

I am an independent.

There is also a side of me that has learned how to be very self-sufficient as well. When I was a junior in high school, my family experienced a huge change through the confessed affair of my father. That event was a catalyst for this independent girl to shift right into complete self-sufficiency. I also carry around the apple that fell from the tree of strong and stubborn from my mom as well.

As everyone in my family was trying to emotionally put life back together, the survival skill of self-sufficiency took deeper roots in me.

I have carried around the messages that life has been up to me, and that I am responsible for what happens. There is some level of truth that. However, this does not leave a lot of room for surrender.

At some point we all battle with playing the role of being our own kings. We decide that we can do it better than God and manage whatever we are facing; and onto the throne we go.

We can look back in the Old Testament and see that for centuries the demands on and for a king have always failed. It is no mystery why I have experienced failure in my life every time I take on the throne.

Pain is the only result when stepping outside of what only He can do.

Surrender is something that is so hard for me. It goes against every grain of independence. I hate feeling out of control, and choosing to surrender immediately brings on that feeling. My heart constantly feels the tension of playing Tug-Of-War with God.

I have spent my whole life as an independent. I don’t know how to make the shift from independence to dependence on God. I know it’s a choice – a choice that takes trust and risk. I am working on choosing to find contentment in feeling out of control. I am definitely tired of experiencing failure.

Surrendering is a hard choice to make, but is worth it in the long run.

In what ways do you struggle with surrendering?

What are you holding on to that you might need to surrender?

 

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Love is something too big to understand and grasp. Even when we think we have love figured out, she blows our mind.

Love is the one thing sought after and fought for. Love defies logic. Love makes a person crazy.

Love is all consuming. Love feels deeply. Love is seen, heard and valued. Love is cherished and treasured.

Love fights for the heart. Love goes after the heart. Love is honey to the soul.

Love is affection. Love is faithful and committed. Love forgives and covers over a mountain of wrong with grace.

Love is the exhale in fear. Love is peace in anxiousness. Love validates worth. Love says you matter.

Love is a choice. Love holds boundaries of security. Love protects. Love has no question, but the action of love speaks volumes over words.

Love chooses to keep believing and trying. Love works towards trust and healing.

Love risks, even though….

Love lays down life for another. Love is not an option. Love is obedience – a choice – a command. Love is surrender.

By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.

What is LOVE to you?

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I am a fighter. I always have been. Maybe growing up with an older brother has engrained survival into me.

My brother and I would wrestle a ton. I would always lose. Looking back, there was not one time I can think of where I just didn’t try and fight back. I was never going to win no matter how many rounds we went. However, the reality of not winning was never my first response. I tried. I fought. He would literally toss me and I would just try running harder all the more.

Everyone experiences reaching that place where all of our resources are exhausted, and so are we. Every game has an ending where no more moves can be played. Every match has a final point. Every war requires someone to surrender in end.

I have been facing the reality, and the tension, that there is never a great time to surrender, but it is also never too late to surrender.

Surrendering is so hard for this self-sufficient girl. Surrendering seems to be the choice I make when it’s the only choice left to make.

This pattern of surrendering is costly to my heart and others. I usually get to the point of exhaustion before I realize what I have been running so hard after, has failed.

Surrendering can be associated with weakness. This is a misconception that can be costly. There is a lot of wisdom in choosing to surrender.

I was sweating it out on the Cross Trainer at the gym tonight. It was a simple but powerful metaphor for me. Sometimes I feel like I am trying so hard to pour all I have into life, relationships, transitioning, and even hoping. In the end, I am sweating hard, but still stationary.

Surrender is just hard. It is the wise choice to make before exhausting the road that leads to self-sufficient failure.

God is patient. He is always faithful in redirecting my failures back to him.

I need to get better at assessing the battle. This doesn’t mean to not try, but it means to try well.

For me, surrendering facilitates waiting, as well as enabling me to choose faith verses my own abilities.

Surrendering does not mean the white flag of failure. Surrendering is the wisdom sustaining obedience.

Today, I am going to try and walk out my day surrendered.

What does surrendering mean and look like for you?

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I can’t believe almost an entire year has flown by!

Is it already time to for a new oneword2012!?

This time last year, I was so ready to kick 2010 to the curb! I was ready for all things new and different. The restlessness and in me was igniting some serious motivation in my heart.

What was I ready for?

All the roads of my heart were leading me to a place of needing to really learn how to follow. I didn’t know what this word had in store for me this past year. I honestly had no idea where intentionally choosing to follow would lead me.

My life mantra is to really learn how believe intimately in who God says he is, which in turn teaches me to live life differently.

He extends and invitation for all to do life with him through following. This invitation has wrecked me, in a good way, all year.

What has following required?

Following requires faith

Following after him this year has challenged my concepts and practices of faith. Following has challenged me to redefine what faith really is. I have learned that faith is a choice. Faith is choosing to believe in God who is illogical, beyond my understanding, and sometimes unrecognizable. Following in faith is walking down a road that resembles nothing like I think it should look. Following has required my faith to keep choosing to praise him when what I consider failures, God says you are actually walking the right way.

Following requires surrender

I am self-sufficient to the core. I have spent too much of my life walking in self-dependence. This way of life will always be in conflict with God, and anyone else, being a part of my life. Learning to follow requires the surrender of my own logic and understanding of what is best. I have had to surrender my survival skills of dealing with my own pain. The caverns of my heart are deeper than I anticipated. It’s not pretty. Committing to following after him means choosing to deal with my issues. Grief has been my fore front emotion, but the healing has been met in his depth as well. I’m so grateful.

I know hope I’m not alone in discovering my OneWord has worked me over this year. I am still learning daily; I am still determined to rock this word into 2012!

I am still learning the depths of what follow means for me everyday.

How has your OneWord been working you?

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Wow. What a week.

My heart and head are still trying to catch up with each other, not to mention my emotions.

The Catalyst Conference rocks me every year. There is just a great mixture of meeting great people, and content to marinate on. This year was packed with more people then content, but the marinating is still ensuing.

This year’s theme for Catalyst was Be Present.

This is a concept that is becoming more and more of a foreign in our world. Present is a segment of time, yet we don’t treat it as such. We are addicted to the “what’s next” in every area of life. We are addicted to what is presently happening in everyone else’s life.

We are constantly looking, searching, and trying to find.

I am learning just how much my heart has been begging me to be present with what is just going on inside of me. Our emotions have a way of keeping our hearts tethered to the present. I know I can’t out feel my heart. She does not go away.

I am in the midst of a huge transition. (more to come). I feel winded in the deepest of ways. So many times during the conference I felt the deep beginnings of surfacing sobs. My hearts way of beckoning me.

Being present takes surrendering; even when it comes to the heart.

So I stood surrendered and the tears flowed. You see, being present with our hearts enables the ability to know where we are, which enables the reality of where God is and wants to be.

Being present with our hearts enables the pain to be real and felt. Choosing to be surrendered to the present state of our hearts allows our body to exhale from the breath we’ve been holding tight; even if the tears follow fast.

Surrendering to the presence of my own heart has highlighted the areas of silenced ache in me. I see so much room for the healer and comforter that was blocked by my own survival skills. He is patient and waiting.

Surrendering does not mean it’s all just easier. It’s honestly harder before it gets better. We are made to feel. We are wired for a healer.

Being present is watching with the hope of one day’s renewing, and breathing through right now’s exhaustion and pain.

What does it look like for you to be present with your own heart?

What blocks you from being present?

 

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There is something about the heaviest Friday of the year. Granted it is supposed to be a day of remembering the weight of what was done for me, but it’s a day that means more to me than any other. Good Friday is a day I feel deeply every year. If I am being most honest, I appreciate this day more than rejoicing that comes on Sunday.

I feel the weight of my sin every day.

Today is filled with so much extreme emotion. Jesus spent his days introducing life to all. Jesus invited all to take part in real life. He healed and redeemed. Jesus redefined life, love, hope, and grace.

Jesus gave life back to the lifeless. So how could he die?

“Vanquishing death requires death.”

I feel the weight of what real life was given through death. Reading through Jesus’ last words, I see even more what death really means and looks like.

Death is the punctuation of an ending in life. It requires everything of me. Death requires an “it is finished” in me. When it was finished for Jesus, he hung his in surrender.

In the end Jesus submitted to death!

Death is hard. It feels lonely. What do we do when we feel at the end of something in us? What do we do when we feel at the end of our strength, career, life, relationships, comforts, stability, and dreams?

Death feels forsaking.

What did Jesus do at the end of his everything? He submitted. Jesus used his last breaths to surrender his spirit into the hands of the one he felt forsaken by.

This has challenged me so much today. I know I have not had the heart of surrender in dealing with “deaths” in my life. I sit too long in the place of feeling forgotten/forsaken, and call it waiting. Conquering death requires death in me. I want to surrender well.

The end of me is the beginning of him.

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