Before we talk about how to surrender to God, we should ask: is it even a good idea to surrender to God? ‘Surrendering’ means ‘losing’, doesn’t it? Is that ever good? Fair enough. Read on and I’ll explain why so many Christians are talking about surrendering to God, even though the phrase is not in the Bible.
Surrendering is stop fighting
‘Surrender’ is used in various ways. An army surrenders to a victorious army. It acknowledges the superior power of the other army, and allows that army to decide what to do with the losing side. So if you surrender to God, you say: ‘Lord, I stop fighting you. You win. My life belongs to You. You decide what happens.’
Surrendering is stop your resistance
A second way to use ‘surrender’ is to say: ‘I surrender to love’. It means that you stop your resistance against the feeling, and that you allow yourself to be fully filled with it. That’s a positive step, because love is good.
What is surrendering to God?
Both of these uses of the word ‘surrender’ are relevant when we talk about surrendering to God. It is acknowledging that you have been fighting God, and that you should stop it and allow Him to tell you how your life should be. And it is a positive thing, because when God takes over in your life, you are filled with all the good things that He wants to give to you.
What should I surrender to God?
At the end of World War II the allied forces refused to negotiate with Germany. They had just one demand: unconditional surrender. That’s the same what you should do: surrender your life unconditionally to God. Surrender your mind, your body, and your will.
Surrender your mind
Surrendering your mind does not mean to stop thinking. It means to think according to God’s will. An important aspect of surrendering your mind is to stop filling it with temptations to sin. So many TV programs tempt you to want material possession, sexual immorality, or power. The same goes for much music. The presence of wrong friends does the same. Surrendering your mind is saying farewell to all that and instead to fill your mind with “whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things” (Philippians 4:8).
Surrender your body
If you believe in Jesus, your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19). So treat your body with honour, and do not damage it through smoking, excessive alcohol use and taking part in dangerous stunts. Another important aspect of surrendering your body is to enjoy sex within the boundaries that God has set: the lifelong marriage between a husband and wife.
Surrender your will
Jesus prayed “not My will but Yours be done” (Luke 22:42). We should do the same. Many people, whether they realise it or not, want to obey God some of the time and do their own will some of the time. Of course that raises the question: how often is your own will better than God’s will? The answer is: never! If you set your will against God’s will, you are damaging the people around you. It might feel it’s better for yourself, but that is a mistake. Also for your own happiness in the long run, both here on earth and in eternity, God’s will is best. Trust him.
Surrendering is obligate for a christian
The first benefit of surrendering to God is salvation. Surrendering to God is not optional for a Christian- it is the definition of what a Christian is. It is impossible to be a child of God and to enter heaven as long as you keep saying: I am deciding for myself what I do with my life. When you put your trust in Jesus as your Saviour, you also accept Him as Lord of your life. Every Christian has surrendered his life to Jesus.
Surrendering lets us live close to God
Yet we have to acknowledge that often we do not surrender absolutely. There may be areas in your life that you still want to keep under your own authority. Surrendering these areas will lead to further benefits. The second benefit, that comes with full surrender, is that we live close to God. “He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him” (John 14:21).
Surrendering lets us serve God
The third benefit of surrendering to God is power for service. We cannot serve God in our own power. But when we yield to the influence of the Holy Spirit, God can use us. See e.g. Acts 4:31: “They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness.”
To surrender, you need to trust God
Surrendering to God begins with a decision. That is more easily said than done. You really need to trust God to know best in every aspect of your life. Only then can you take the decision to let God be the boss in your life who can tell you what to do.
To surrender, you need to tell God
Surrendering to God continues with telling God: ‘Lord, I surrender to you, I surrender all of my mind, my body, and my will. Lead me in your truth.’ He is God almighty, and He will sustain you, also in your decision to surrender.
To surrender, you need to stay with God
Surrendering to God is also sustained by good habits. Reading the Word of God will keep your mind focused on the will of God. Worshiping God will help you stay close to the God you surrendered to. Fleeing evil will help you to stay on God’s side and not be trapped by the devil.
God knows best. He gave Jesus Christ to be the Saviour for everyone who believes in Him. To receive the full benefits of his salvation, you should fully surrender to God. Decide not to do your will, but God’s will. Then you will be close to God and experience his power. Read the Bible and worship God to continue being blessed in your life surrendered to God.