Surrender: To relinquish power or control of something to another. To give over or resign.
As Christians, we’ve learned at an early age to surrender ourselves to God. What does that mean? We’re taught to trust God because He knows best. We have wants, desires, ideas and opinions but if we surrender those things to Him, God will work everything out the way He intended.
Ok – but HOW do we do that? As Christians, we know that God is in control and we know that He is good, but do we actually KNOW? Like, really get it? If I’m being honest, I can say that surrender is hard to do. It’s something I struggle with on a continual basis – and I know that I’m not the only one.
At the end of last summer, I committed that come this July I was going to move to Kenya and serve with the Villages of Hope. When I decided, I knew that it was something I was supposed to do – maybe I wasn’t totally sure, but I kept thinking “I’ll say yes to this, and if it’s really supposed to be a no, God will close that door”. Take a risk – that’s what were supposed to do as Christians, right?
I started support raising, meeting with people, researching like crazy about life in Kenya. People would say things like “Kenya isn’t safe you know…but good for you!” Ha, thanks. There were more days then not that I would think to myself…what am I doing? Do I really want this? Did God really call me to this?
In April, I had a fundraiser. I was so blown away at the people who came, and not only supported me financially, but promised to partner with me in prayer and encouragement. My heart was so full that day. I went to bed that night feeling different than I ever did before. I realized THAT NIGHT that I hadn’t truly surrendered this move to Kenya with my whole heart and mind to God. I’m not trying to get all over spiritual, but really – I had never totally confirmed in my heart that yes I would do this, and I would trust God fully with whatever came my way. So that night, I said “Ok God, I want to do this. I’m excited to do this. I surrender ALL of it to you.” I went to bed filled with so much peace.
The next morning, I spoke to the director of the Villages of Hope on the phone and she said “Melissa, can you come to Zambia for the year instead?”
I couldn’t believe it. YES I WILL COME TO ZAMBIA! I thought to myself after that phone call…is that all God wanted from me? He just wanted me to surrender my heart, will and desires to Him – all He wanted was a yes? I totally believe so.
What is God asking you to surrender to Him? A fear that has been weighing you down? A relationship that isn’t looking good? A dream that you have that you’re not sure is going to work out? All He wants from us is a YES and He will blow us away with what He has in turn. It’s hard to believe it sometimes, but His ways are so much better. They’re so much more worth it then what we have planned for ourselves. Surrender to Him. Make that choice to do so.
I would have never imagined that by saying yes to Kenya, He was going to re-direct me to Zambia instead. A place that is so close to my heart – filled with people that I love. Filling a role that is completely out of my norm and comfort zone, but something I’ve always desired to try. He is working all things out.
Zambia, here I come.