The Love Surrender? Is that an oxymoron?
To me, the word “surrender” reminds me that there’s a battle going on. Someone will be victorious and someone will be defeated … unless the one about to be defeated surrenders. Gives complete control to the other. Takes orders. Serves in complete obedience.
Friend, we are in a battle, a spiritual battle. Do you know the victor?
“Love.” That’s also serving. It’s a choice like surrendering. But it’s more. Love comes from the heart. Love comes from the soul. Love comes from the mind.
Love is a gift from God that victoriously surrenders all.Tweet
The Love Surrender envelopes all of our hearts, souls, and minds.
In Isaiah 6, Isaiah saw God seated on His throne, high and lifted up. The train of God’s robe filled the temple.
Above the throne stood two seraphim, each with 6 wings. Two covered their faces, two covered their feet and with two they flew. One cried to the other, “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory.”
The doorposts of the temple shook and the temple was filled with smoke.
Isaiah’s response: “Woe is me, for I am undone! Because I am a man of unclean lips, And I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; For my eyes have seen the King, The LORD of hosts.”
One seraph took a live coal from the altar and touched Isaiah’s lips. His sin was taken away.
Then Isaiah heard God ask, “Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?”
Isaiah immediately said, “Here am I! Send me.“
Isaiah’s life was never the same. Through God, he prophesied, worked miracles, and wrote the book of Isaiah in the Old Testament.
He loved God and God’s people, and he looked forward to the coming of the Messiah, Jesus. He lived to point people to God.
After an amazing victory for the Lord, Isaiah ran from Jezebel. But God in His grace met him outside the cave he was hiding in and restored Isaiah to a state of surrender.
Sometimes the Christian walk feels like Isaiah’s run. A run along a dusty and rock-strewn path with weeds growing up all around. It’s lonely.
We wonder, “God, where are You taking me? I gave my life to You decades ago.”
Absolute Surrender … The Love Surrender
Unlike Isaiah … unlike you and me, Jesus absolutely and perfectly surrendered to God’s will. Our God of love loved the world so much that He sent Jesus into the world to pay the price of our sins so that we could enjoy life in His presence forever.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” John 3:16Tweet
Jesus is our perfect example of surrendering in love to God the Father.
The Bible talks a lot about love, doesn’t it? Our church even has “love” in its mission statement. “Preach the Gospel. Love One Another.”
The Love Surrender
One day, a Pharisee who was a lawyer asked Jesus:
“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?” Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”Matthew 22:36-40
Love requires all of our hearts, all of our souls, and all of our minds.
Love surrenders our will for God’s will. Love lays down our lives for God and others.
Because of God’s love for the world, because of God’s love for you and me, God sent Jesus into the world … to take on human flesh … to walk this earth … to teach … to heal the sick, raise the dead, feed the people … to preach the kingdom of God … to live a life of absolute surrender, loving to the fullest with His heart, soul, and mind … a sinless life … a life of love.
Jesus came to the world to show the way of God … a way that requires absolute surrender.
Jesus said that He only did and said what He saw the Father do. None of the world’s ways. All of God’s ways.
What The Love Surrender Looks Like
Absolute surrender to a life of love is Jesus calling out to Peter in the fishing boat, “Follow me,” and Peter dropping his nets and leaving his fishing boat to follow Jesus.
Absolute surrender to a life of love is Matthew leaving his lucrative tax collection business and walking with Jesus throughout the land.
Absolute surrender to a life of love is Paul getting up after being stoned, dusting himself off, and going back into Lystra to preach the Good News.
Absolute surrender to a life of love is presenting our bodies as living sacrifices to God and allowing the Holy Spirit to renew our minds.
Empowered to Surrender
I’ll be honest, I struggled with the topic of complete surrender. I was convicted. I present my body, heart, soul, and mind to God. But I find that I’m not able to achieve complete surrender.
Can you identify with that?
Andrew Murray describes absolute surrender.
I give myself absolutely to God, to His will, to do only what God wants.”Andrew Murray, Absolute Surrender, p. 14
It is God who will enable you to carry out the surrender.
And, on the other side, come and say: “I give myself absolutely to God, to let Him work in me to will and to do of His good pleasure, as He has promised to do.” (p. 14)
Absolute surrender to God empowers us to comprehend the breadth, length, height, and depths of the love of Jesus that surpass knowledge as we experience the fullness of God.
When we absolutely surrender to a life of love through the power of Jesus, we can say “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Galatians 2:20
You can trust God to enable you to carry out the surrender.
Absolutely surrender to a life of love through the power of Jesus. God will use you in mighty ways.Tweet
Have you absolutely surrendered to God? You can right now.
Father, we surrender our hearts, souls, minds, bodies, and all that we are and have to You. We have sinned, disobeyed Your commandments. Forgive us Father. Thank You for sending Jesus into the world to pay the price that we owe for those sins. Jesus, thank You for dying on the cross so that we would be cleansed from our sins. You have conquered the world, and You rose from the dead three days later. We surrender to You. Be our Lord and Savior. Empower us to absolutely surrender to You in love. Amen.