Consider this: Surrender is never in the past, but always in the present – now!
In Revelation 13:8, we read that Jesus was “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world,” – but the actual event took place on Calvary by the substitutional, sacrificial death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, recorded in the New Testament. When Jesus cried out on the cross, “It is finished,” He began a flow of grace to mankind from heaven that is inexhaustible. The tap of grace was turned on at Calvary and it has never stopped flowing.
When I knelt at the foot of the Cross and received Jesus Christ into my life, I was born again spiritually through His incorruptible seed, figuratively signing the deed to give God permission, “carte blanche,” to enter my life and work with me to bring me to the place of surrender, the ultimate goal is, “not my will, Lord, but Thine.” Remember, surrender is always in the present!
Revelation 19:7 Declares a prophecy of the glorious, forthcoming event of the marriage supper of the Lamb to the Bride of Christ, the Church – “…and His wife has made herself ready.” The Bride must make herself ready. In the natural, a bride prepares herself for the excitement of her wedding day and the anticipation of a joyous future together with her husband, when the two will become one flesh as God intended. So it is with us. We are the Bride of Christ, preparing for eternity as we respond to the Holy Spirit in our lives.
I can sweetly sing in a Gathering, “Blessed Holy Spirit come and take complete control of my life,” but when I leave the Gathering and enter into the circumstances of the School of Life, my actions may prove that the words I sang so sweetly under the anointing of God are not my experience, and I continue on the treadmill of having my own way, taking control of my life again, (and sometimes other people’s), and thus blocking the flow of God’s grace to my life.
Indeed! This is an “uttermost” salvation, it is open to the “whosoever” in life, but we, the Bride, must be “stewards of the manifold grace of God,” 1 Peter 4:10. The grace of God is not for us to wallow in selfishly, this precious gift of God is costly, wrought through the agony of Calvary, and made available for us not only to receive and enjoy, but also to minister it to others.
The peace of God in my life has purpose, when it is rattled and my peace barometer begins to fluctuate, I need to examine myself before the Lord, and hear what He is saying. A person is never too old to hear the voice of God or be changed.
Obedience to the Holy Spirit is much more than just a point of contact, it is a point of release. The moment I obey the Lord is likened to turning on a switch in the power house of God.
Walking in obedience to God requires humility. Obedience brings change, and change means surrender to God. Stubborn flesh does not like change because it refuses humility. I must see that change always begins with me, but my unruly heart always wants others to change to suit me and prays for my circumstances to change, BUT..
DON’T ASK GOD TO CHANGE YOUR CIRCUMSTANCES, HE SENT THEM TO CHANGE YOU!
The Lord comes to me and simply says, “You change!” This is the opportunity to surrender my will in response to Him, as He tenderly reminds me of the words of the song I sang so sincerely to Him in the Gathering. Righteously, God comes for my words. Why should I struggle and hang on to my identity – a man can never out-give God!
The pattern for us to learn from is simple: “As in the natural, so in the Spiritual.”
Consider the growth of a young child developing naturally through the years. A 4 year old child becomes 5, then 6 and then reaches 7 years of age, but if at the age of 7 he has not developed any more than how he was at 4 years, he is considered to be retarded. The years continue to pass and he enters his teens, but at 13 years of age if he has only crawled up to the likeness of a 6 year old in his progress, he is still retarded.
In the natural a normal child changes every year – physically, mentally, in his thinking, in the fine-tuned movements of the nervous system, enabling him to perform tasks that he was incapable of at 4 years of age. So it is with spiritual growth. As we grow in God, He can ask us for more and trust us with more as we learn to bear it to His glory. His is the work in us, so His is the credit, the glory! But the child who never develops into the age that he is, is retarded. We walk with the Lord by the Holy Spirit but if we refuse Him, our growth is stunted by our disobedience and we become spiritually retarded.
“Dear Lord! Please save me from myself and keep me true to You!”
When God asks something of me, I am able to perform the task – in His strength. He does not ask something of us without equipping and enabling us. Our Heavenly Father has equipped us for His calling with the Indwelling Christ, that like Paul we may boldly declare, “I can do all things through Christ, Who strengthens me,” Philippians 4:13