Complete Surrender

Complete Surrender

How healthy are our spiritual lives really? And what immediately comes to mind when I ask that question? What is the measuring rod we use to divine our spiritual health? We have read the Bible this morning? Check. We have prayed to God for friends and family? Check. Maybe we have listened to some Christian music? Check. So, we feel all spiritual today. It is a good day.

But is that the mark of true spiritual vitality? Is doing the right stuff a sign that our walk with God is healthy? I am not so sure. Sometimes in moments of sickness and stress I don’t do these things. Sometimes I don’t get through the checklist. Sometimes I get through the checklist and I still don’t feel any different. I love Jesus alright. I would give all to serve him and to make Christ known. That’s not my problem.

The fight for me is when trauma and stress come into my life. A serious illness (which I have been battling recently), the death of a family member (that too), satanic attack in ministry (yup) and the sheer hard work it is sometimes to get out of bed and do the basic things well. To wake up and thank God despite our circumstances. To resist the urge to ask him to take it all away and somehow make life easier. Like that is his job. To make our existence more comfortable.

‘Many modern day churchgoers, undoubtedly well meaning but sadly misinformed, earnestly pray to a vending machine God who supposedly cranks out what we ask for as long as we push the right buttons. Christians of centuries past saw faith as a struggle of a different sort – not to get God to do our will, but to die to ourselves so we can accept God’s will.’ (p96, Thirsting For God)

I can have my theology all boxed off and my doctrine off pat but when the rubber hits the road and life begins to impinge upon my Godly musings, that’s when the reality of my true spiritual health will come to the fore. Recently, I have come to realise that I have not been as surrendered to God as I had previously thought. Also, I had confused my spiritual well being with my Christian productivity. I was doing OK because I was doing A, B and C. It took a month off work and some serious reflection to arrive at this.

What is required in my life is more surrender to God. More praise of who He is and what He has done in the gospel of Jesus Christ. That’s where my spiritual health needs to tether itself. Not to my ministry or my reading or my theological understanding but to Christ and his finished work at Calvary. Storms are brewing, they always are in this game, but the key is to walk with Christ through them and not look for ways around them, over them or pathways to avoid them. Christ wants me to live a life of surrender to his will and my spiritual health will be reflected in how much I live to do his good and perfect will for my life, no matter how unpleasant or intolerable it may appear to be.

How healthy is our spiritual life really? How truly surrendered are we?