Sharing the stories of people whose lives have been transformed by the love, grace, and power of God is such a privilege. Every testimony in Victorious Living builds my faith and reminds me that nothing is impossible with God.
This issue’s feature stories remind me that a victorious life begins and ends with surrender. The moment we stop running from God and turn to face Him, His goodness will overtake us and redeem what the enemy has stolen and what we have lost or forfeited. As we surrender control, we find inexplicable peace. Even fear is demolished in His presence.
Recently at my church, our worship leader encouraged the congregation to lift our hands toward the heavens as an outward sign of our inward surrender to God. Hundreds of arms shot up across the auditorium; it was a beautiful sight.
My hands were raised too, but I have to admit, my mind took a little side journey. As I heard her words, a visual formed in my mind. I saw an image of a man running from the authorities. He looked tired and desperate. But then I saw that runner stop, lift his hands in the air, and say, “I surrender!” At that moment, with those words, the chase was over. Indeed, I have watched way too much crime television!
But I felt the Lord reminding me of the many times I’ve run through life, clutching something or someone, trying desperately to bring about some result. Not until I stopped running, turned to God, lifted my hands, and said, “God, I surrender. Take it; it’s Yours!” did I find rest, peace, and hope.
Whatever your “it” is—a situation, person, dream, endeavor, emotion, or anxious thought—giving it over to God and choosing to end the chase will change everything.
Have you ever considered that God—the Highest Authority—is chasing you down? And that’s a good thing! Because it is God’s love, goodness, and mercy that is hot on our trail (Psalm 23:6). And His goodness brings about repentance in our lives (Romans 2:4).
Yet so often, we run from Him. We exhaust ourselves, hanging on to our burdens and sins. When will we come to our senses and surrender? When will we put an end to the chase and let His goodness overtake us? It’s only in surrender that we will find rest for our weary souls and victory over our enemies. Surrender is a battle term. It’s waving the white flag and saying, “I give up! I’m yours! I come under your authority.”
Surrender is difficult. But if we’d stop to consider who’s asking for that surrender, if we’d look at His track record of faithfulness, we’d lift our arms so fast, we might even throw them out of their sockets!
It’s God, the Creator of the universe. The One who formed us in our mothers’ wombs. The One who loves us, even though He knows everything about us. He is all-powerful and all-knowing, everywhere at all times. And He is calling out to us now, saying, “Stop running! Stop carrying that heavy burden. Stop doing everything in your own strength. Cast your cares onto Me and let My love and goodness overtake you.”
Here’s the deal. The moment you surrender your addiction to God, help is on the way. When you surrender your marriage or children or any relationship, God begins to restore lives and situations. When you surrender your health, career, or future to God, He thunders down from heaven and wages war on your behalf (Psalm 18). Friend, when you give your “it” to God, the power of heaven is on your side.
What are you waiting for?