Surrender not control
Following Jesus is all about choosing surrender not control.
And yet, much of what is today called Christianity, is about control at all costs, and surrender only when convenient.
Which leads me to this thought: what is called Christianity today, is not, at the very core what following Jesus is really about.
Through a long series of events this past week, this past month and throughout the pandemic, I have seen many folks that claim Christ choose control at all costs, even at the cost of not surrendering to Christ.
Are these folks doing their best? In their eyes, yes. And do the believe they are right. Yes. No one says I want to believe lies and illusions. Please, over here, I want to be decieved. No, they believe lies and illusions because they believe it is truth, right?
This is what I know: Jesus throughout his life here on this earth, choose to surrender his days and his ways to the Father. Jesus’ desire was to be aligned with the Father’s heart even if it cost him comfort or convenience or even control in the moment.
There are many illustrations of this, but the one that is most pronounced is found in Luke 22:42:
42 He said, “Father, if it’s your will, take this cup of suffering away from me. However, not my will but your will must be done.”
Jesus paraphrased: I don’t want this thing that is right in front of me and if there is another way, then let it happen. But at the end of the day, I surrender to your will Father.
Surrender is one of the core premises of following Jesus. With out surrender we can not follow in the steps of Jesus (see above) nor can we follow Him.
Jesus talked about more here in Mark 10:42-45
42 Jesus called them over and said, “You know that the ones who are considered the rulers by the Gentiles show off their authority over them and their high-ranking officials order them around. 43 But that’s not the way it will be with you. Whoever wants to be great among you will be your servant. 44 Whoever wants to be first among you will be the slave of all, 45 for the Human One didn’t come to be served but rather to serve and to give his life to liberate many people.”
The disciples wanted to rule the way the rulers of the day ruled. Authority, power and control. Jesus says - “BUT that is not the way it will be with you that follow me.” Because that is the not MY way.
MY way is this
Become a servant.
In other words, surrender.
I encourage you, read some stories of Jesus today from Matthew, Mark, Luke or John and see for yourself if Jesus’ way was on of choosing surrender over control.
Read any of the letters Paul wrote to the churches - will you see in those letters the same thing: surrender over control? I think you will, but you read it for yourself.
If I am right, then more surrender to Jesus is the cure for what ails us as people, as the church, as a country, as a world.
Jesus modeled surrender. Those that follow Jesus will do the same. Those that choose control over surrender, well they are feeding a false narrative of who Jesus is and what He desires most in this world.