Is My Heart Really Yours, Lord?

As I was headed to Walmart a week or so ago, I was listening to this song in the car:

Some of the words:

“My heart is Yours, take it all, take it all, my life in Your hands.

I lay down my life, I take up my cross, Jesus,

you are my God, whatever the cost, Jesus.

All to Jesus I surrender, all to you I freely give.

All through Walmart, I hummed the tune still in my heart, said the words over and over, “All to Jesus I surrender, all to you I freely give, I lay down my life…” with thoughts of surrender. My mind was captivated with the song.

Until I arrived at the checkout. There was an abrupt interruption. There were long lines, and I was in a hurry with about 15-20 items. As I stood in line, a man came and just wedged his basket and pushed his body in front of my cart. I’ve never seen anything like it. I’ve had people ask if they could go in front of me if they only have a few items, but he just decided he was doing it because he only had a couple of things and I had more. (No, it wasn’t an express lane.)

My first reaction (only in my mind thankfully) wasn’t kind. I didn’t want to say, “Oh, sure, that’s fine. Go ahead.” But the moment my heart got ugly, the words of the song flashed back to my mind.

Really? Will you really surrender your whole life to Jesus, give your whole life to Him — oh, of course, except your place in line, right? I was convicted, shamed. I immediately welcomed his place there and struck up a conversation. He seemed needy for conversation, someone to talk to. I found out where he lived and told him about our church plant in that town. As he left, he thanked me for letting him get in line and told me it was nice to talk with someone.

Wasn’t that better than demanding my rights? I could have so easily missed the opportunity by being abrupt in response, ignoring him.

How very quickly my heart can go from willing to follow and love Jesus to getting irritated and wanting my way. It didn’t take long, but I was thankful for the conviction God gave in that moment to recognize it. I’m sure I often miss it. The words were just too fresh on my tongue to miss the inconsistency.

I’ve pondered this encounter a lot the last week. You’ll give up your life, but not your place in line? And if you don’t give up your place in line, are you really giving up your life? Things to keep considering.

Calling: Surrendering Our Lives to God

The last post alluded to this, but as we consider calling and these biblical realities of our identity in Christ, following Jesus, and finding our purpose and satisfaction in Jesus, we arrive at surrendering our lives to God.

While I don’t see the word “surrender” used in the Bible, I believe it is a biblical concept. To surrender (as defined at!) is “to yield to the possession or power of another,” “to give oneself up.” When we surrender our lives to Jesus, we give ourselves to Him, the One who gave His life for us.

In the book Absolute Surrender by Andrew Murray, he describes surrender as saying, “I give myself absolutely to God, to His will, to do only what God wants.” And then also saying, “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.”

When we surrender our lives to God, He enables us by the power of His Spirit to live the life He has given us and called us to live.

We find our calling then from this place of surrender to God.

Because of Jesus and his perfect life, His death on our behalf, His resurrection – by faith in Him, we can know God and be rescued from our sin and death, restored to fellowship with the God who made us. When we cast ourselves in faith upon Christ, we are given the Holy Spirit to live within us to guide us, and we have God’s Word to teach us how to live in obedience to Him.

We see Jesus’ life, lived here on earth to the glory of His Father, surrendered to His Father’s will. He gave His life so that we could live. It’s too wonderful for words. And we can do the same, surrender our lives to the Father’s will and live for His glory. He will show us how to live and what our callings are as we surrender to Him, not just at the point of salvation, but day by day.

This kind of life brings great blessing and true joy. In my next post, I’ll share a little of my own story.

Mother-Daughter Tea

Today, my daughter and I attended a Mother-Daughter Tea at our church. It was a sweet time, and she loved it. She seemed so grown up today, in a new dress from her grandmother, sporting a new haircut. I love time spent with each of my children individually.

God keeps driving home to me the point I made in my last post — that He is strong, and I am weak, that I live this life by the power of His Spirit providing me the strength I need, not through my own self effort.

I had the opportunity to go out of town last weekend and visit friends we knew when we lived in Virginia. We had a nice day and a half of visiting before I got sick with a stomach bug! It is not fun to be sick away from home, and I was praying I wouldn’t infect this sweet family. (My friend is pregnant and has a young child, and her husband has a busy job… the last thing I wanted to leave them would be this “gift”!)

I have to say though that the Lord used this time to give me a great deal of sleep and rest and time to read and study for longer periods than I normally have. He continued to speak to me about the topic of my last post and some things He is helping me understand right to my core.

I had the time to read a great book by Andrew Murray entitled Absolute Surrender that my friend had. It was exactly on this topic of living in surrender to God, allowing His Spirit to fill and lead me, and how He is strong when we are weak. I was absolutely weak, recognizing that in this sickness I was experiencing my weakness in a very physical way, but that this is just a picture of how I really always am, whether I feel it or not! I so need God and His power and strength, and I need to trust Him!

Murray described more about this surrender to God:

  • God expects my surrender,
  • God accomplishes my surrender,
  • God accepts my surrender,
  • God maintains my surrender
  • God blesses when I surrender.

Murray says, “I come to you with a message, fearful and anxious one. God does not ask you to give the perfect surrender in your strength, or by the power of your will; God is willing to work it in you.” (Philippians 2:13) “Look away from ourselves and look up to God.”

Here are some quotes from Andrew Murray’s book that I loved:

“The Spirit of God has come to make our daily life an exhibition of divine power and a revelation of what God can do for His children.”

“May God grant that the Word may enter into the very depths of our being to search us, and if we discover that we have not come out from the world entirely, if God discovers to us that the self-life, self-will, and self exaltation are there, let us humble ourselves before Him.”

“Why is there not more blessing? We have not honored the Holy Ghost as we should have done. Is there one who can say that that is not true? Is not every thoughtful heart ready to cry: ‘God forgive me that I have not honored the Holy Spirit as I should have done, that I have grieved Him, that I have allowed self and the flesh and my own will to work where the Holy Ghost should have been honored! May God forgive me that I have allowed self and the flesh and the will actually to have the place that God wanted the Holy Ghost to have.'”

“Religious self effort always ends in sinful flesh.”

Murray states that we must:

  • Humble yourself in His sight.
  • Acknowledge that you have grieved the Holy Spirit by your self will, self confidence and self effort.
  • Bow humbly before Him in confession of that.
  • Ask Him to bring you into the dust before Him.
  • Then as you bow, accept God’s teaching that in your flesh there dwelleth no good thing (Romans 7:18) and that nothing will help you except another Life come in.
  • Denying self must every moment be the power of your life, and then Christ will come in and take possession of you.”

So the sickness, though at first glance could have been a temptation to feel disappointment, instead was meant for good, to give me rest, to give me time to think and pray, for God to continue to teach me what He’s been showing me, to give me more opportunity to trust Him. He is so faithful, and I am thankful.