More than Surrender

The other day as I was walking I thought I was doing so well—using my walk as a prayer time. It sounds so simple but I have to be honest with you, for me it’s not. It takes focus and discipline. My natural tendency is to let my mind wander or better yet, moan and groan. So, I was feeling rather proud of myself for praying. I should’ve known better.

Like so many people, I like to use the acronym ACTS to keep me on track as I pray.

So as I was walking I started my prayer time with adoration—worship. Worship is an awesome thing. Taking my eyes off all the things I tend to watch and hold onto, and intentionally turning my eyes to God and His greatness and thanking Him and praising Him for who He is. It’s refreshing. It’s like hitting the reset button for me. That usually leads me to surrendering myself to Him.

Surrendering to God is good and it’s necessary to live a vibrant Christian life, but I tend to want to stop at the surrendering. I want to curl up like a cat and stay there at the feet of Jesus. I want to lay down in surrender…and then spend the day dreamily watching the clouds go by. Isn’t that what surrender is? Laying one’s self down? I can do that…

The thought had just barely flashed inside my head when I felt God’s nudge.

What about reporting for duty?

Really, Lord?
That takes work. A lot of work. And risk! I could get hurt, I could get shot down…even just being shot at is bad enough. I just want to lay here at the foot of Your throne and admire all You’ve done and sing Your praises. Can’t I do that?

I felt like I was in one of the Chronicles of Narnia movies when one of the children is standing before Aslan and the great lion says “hmmmmmmm.” I felt my shoulders fall and my chin drop.

Okay, Lord. I know You’re right. You didn’t save me to just to curl up and purr Your praises like a cat. You saved me to serve You. So here I am, Lord, reporting for duty.

Put on the full armor of God…

Really, Lord? Can’t I just sweep the floor and wash the dishes? Putting on the armor means battle and I’d really rather be a handmaid in Your house.

Put on the full armor of God. So that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Eph. 6:11-13

Mentally I started putting on each piece of the armor.
The belt of truth.
The breastplate of righteousness—not my righteousness, Jesus’ righteousness.
The shoes of preparation of the Gospel of peace.
The shield of faith to put out the flaming arrows of the evil one.
The helmet of salvation.
The sword of the Spirit.

Okay, Lord. Here I am. Reporting for duty. Ready to work.

A sober peace settled over me even as an anticipation and watchful readiness of what He had for me to do that day filled me.

It’s more than just surrendering to God, it’s reporting for duty.

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