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Completely Surrender

Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. (Philippians 1:6)

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
(Galatians 2:20)

On the few occasions in my life that I have completely submitted to God’s will in advance, He has led me on incredible adventures. I will never forget those journeys. Here are a few: when Liz and I moved to Wichita with no jobs, when we committed to adopt without knowing when/where/who, and when I left my corporate job to come on staff at Hope full-time. In those moments, the decisions seemed scary and perhaps even unreasonably costly. Yet I can remember walking through those situations and not praying my default prayer (“Lord show me your will, I will review it and get back to you.”). I began to pray instead, “Lord, I don’t know what this is; I know it’s big, and I know it will probably change my life, but when you show me, I will do it.”

For me, completely submitting to God’s will means that I elevate His will above my temporary preferences. In Neil Anderson’s book Victory Over the Darkness, he shares:
As a believer you should have one goal for your life – Christ-likeness, to be the person that God created you to be. You should also have desires for those God puts in your life, for their salvation, sanctification, well-being, etc. but you can’t confuse these desires with your life’s goal, or your own identity and self-worth will come into play and you will begin to manipulate and control others instead of serving Christ in their lives.

For me, the key to living out the fruit of the Spirit, to being the leader that God wants me to be in my home and my work, and to not missing out on the great adventures that God has for my life is daily choosing to submit my personal preferences to God’s priorities.
There’s a prayer from Charles De Foucauld that has been helpful for me and that I hope is helpful for you:

Prayer of Abandonment
I abandon myself into your hands;
do with me what you will.
Whatever you may do, I thank you:
I am ready for all, I accept all.
Let only your will be done in me,
and in all your creatures –
I wish no more than this, O Lord.
Into your hands I commend my soul:
I offer it to you with all the love of my heart,
for I love you, Lord,
and so need to give myself,
to surrender myself into your hands without reserve,
and with boundless confidence,
for you are my Father.
-Charles De Foucauld