Last month I posted a list of resolutions for 2018 – here it is only a month later and I’m throwing in the towel. I surrender. As Paul recounts in Romans 7, I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. (Romans 7:14-15 NIV)
I wanted to make a habit of rising earlier, posting to this blog once a week, sharing the gospel at least once a week, reading a book a month, keeping the evenings free of electronics, and exercising regularly. In just over 30 days, I’ve failed to keep every resolution.
It is discouraging to realize how little control I have over my own behavior. Therefore, I throw up the white flag. I surrender. No longer will I make commitments I cannot keep. Well, there I go again!
I have to say, I began well. The Lord placed people in my life those first couple weeks who were ready to hear of Jesus’ love and sacrifice reconciling them with God. I was so excited. God was answering my prayers for opportunity. I walked, went to the gym, and completed fifteen of the 30 Days of Yoga with Adrienne. I purchased and borrowed books to read and have bookmarks half-way through three of them.
But the Winter Olympics were on television – and This Is Us came back on the air. My books bored me. My husband was away, so I stayed up late and slept in. And last week, I didn’t share the gospel with anyone.
“Oh, Lord, help me!” I cried out.
He did. He led me to Proverbs and humbled me.
In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps. (Proverbs 16:9 NIV)
Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails. (Proverbs 19:21 NIV)
It seems my flesh is weak – no surprise. But I am encouraged because when I am weak, God demonstrates his strength and power. So I truly surrender.
I surrender to the word of God. I surrender to the will of God. I surrender to the Spirit of God. I will follow God’s lead. I will trust his love. He is the faithful one. He tells me he will complete the good work he’s begun in my life. (Philippians 1:6)
My job is to trust and obey – and to confess and repent when I don’t.
So, in my surrender I find peace. I don’t have to work so hard. It is not my job to make things happen. What a relief.
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. (Galatians 5:1 NIV)
So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. (John 8:36 NIV)