Practice Makes Perfect
Earlier this week I wrote to you about the subject of “surrender”. It was an issue that I was wrestling with, and after sending out the Plan B, I found out I’m not alone in that battle! Several folks wrote back and commented on how the topic was one that really spoke to them in their own struggles - and that it was also an encouragement to them to take that step of surrender to God, and His plans.
It was nice to get the positive feedback, but as I read through the comments, there was one question that came up multiple times: “How?” How do we make sure we’re fully surrendering to God? It’s a good question, and one that I’ve wrestled with myself - and the answer I’ve come to is this - we practice.
If we are Christians, it means there was a point in our lives when we made a conscious decision to surrender to God. That was our point of conversion - and our initial moment of surrender. It’s what the Apostle Paul experienced on the road to Damascus - when he was knocked down by a blinding light. For most of us, the moment was less dramatic, but it meant the same thing - we were surrendering our lives to Christ. But from that point on, we have had to “practice” that surrender. Or as Paul puts it in 1 Corinthians 15:31, “I die daily.”
So for each of us there is a moment of surrender - and then there is a lifetime of practicing that surrender. And of course, this is where it gets really challenging, because the practice of surrender takes perseverance. It’s moment-by-moment, and day-by-day - and all life long. Jesus puts it this way in Matthew 16:24: “If people want to follow Me, they must give up the things they want. They must be willing even to daily give up their lives to follow me.” (NCV)
If we want to truly surrender our lives to God, then it can’t just be a one-time thing. Instead, it must be a daily practice that we commit to - even when it’s inconvenient, unpopular, or costly. So today, let’s practice surrendering. Let’s practice giving up our time, finances, desires, and talents to be used for God’s plans and purposes - not ours.