Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The Freedom I Seek




Last Sunday morning I sang for church. A virus had gotten the best of me for about three weeks and had turned into walking pneumonia. By Sunday, I was improved but still suffering from the effects. Nevertheless, I felt compelled to share some thoughts and an old Debbie Boone song that had been on my mind. I was glad I did, for despite my condition, it seemed the words of this song spoke to quite a number of people. I had more people than ever tell me it was helpful. I thank God that He can use us even in our weakest moments. 

The longer I live, the more I understand Surrender. "The freedom I seek, is the word that You speak, running deep as the song of my soul..."

It was pretty clear when I was young and the message of surrender broke through my blindness. It meant obey your parents. Submit, respect, trust, and do what they tell you is the wisest thing to do. Do it with joy and appreciation. I embraced this.  

Then came the big life decisions. My surrender was deepened. I told God, and I meant it with every fiber of my being, "I want You to choose what is best for me. Am I to be married or not? If so, to whom? How am I to use my gifts, talents, and skills? I lay aside everything I've thought I wanted, every dream I've ever had, every hope. I trust You to know what is best for me." 

I have never regretted placing myself in His hands, as best as I knew how, for those major life decisions. 

Years later, an even deeper sense of surrender emerges. Again and again, I find, "Oh, it's my will messing things up! I need to surrender!" 

It can be the smallest, seemingly most insignificant issue, but surrender brings life and freedom over and over!

I shared last Sunday before I sang that it was about pancakes most recently. Imagine, silly little, round concoctions of flour, sugar, oil, and egg... an opportunity for spiritual, emotional, relational benefit? Freedom from slavery to my will over a pancake? Yep, you got it. 

I'm making pancakes and the thought occurs, I'll make a few for Curt, then two for me, and then I'll sit down with him to enjoy them. 

I give him one and tell him I'll bring two more soon. He responds, "Oh, please make the next one for yourself. We can just alternate so they stay good and hot." 

I think, "I just made a decision. I'd like to make three for you and then two for me. In that order. You have a different opinion. Ding! My will! This is my will exerting itself. Is there some logical reason for my preference that we should discuss? Not really. It was a quick, pretty-much-feeling-directed vs. logic-directed decision. Laura, it's about pancakes. You don't have to have it your way. Surrender. It doesn't matter. Having peace and contentment between you and your best buddy means much more."

Oh, the freedom when I just let go. 

Surrendered, I flip the 2nd pancake, a smile on my face, and a heart full of joy. (And just for the record, Curt surrenders his will to me just as often as I do to him, maybe more.)

Life gives us a million chances to choose freedom over bondage, and Jesus lived before us the perfect example of surrender: to His Father and to others when that was what was best for them.

Help me, Abba, to quickly recognize when I simply need to surrender. 


In case you'd enjoy hearing this song, I found it on Youtube. 

 


Like the song in the wind
Lord you call me again
Surrender

And I find myself drawn to your voice
As I lean toward the choice
Surrender

Like the echoing sound of the sea
Lord you echo in me
Surrender

Like a dancer I'll follow again
To the music within
Surrender

For the freedom I seek
Is the word that you speak
Running deep as the song of my soul
To be totally sure and totally yours and totally surrendered

Like the song of the rain
You repeat the refrain
Surrender

And I know that your music is mine
And I follow in time
Surrendered

For the freedom I seek
Is the word that you speak
Running deep as the song of my soul
To be totally sure and totally yours and totally surrendered

Like the song in the wind
Lord you call me again
Surrender

And at last I can soar like a bird
On the wings of the word

Surrender

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