What Does It Mean to “Surrender to God”?

mwspear96 asked a question:

Hey brother. I’ve been a Christian for about five years now, and I always hear people say that we have to surrender everything to God, (heck, I’ve even preached it myself.) Although, I’m not sure how to actually do that. I’ve been living for myself for so long that it seems like an impossible task. How do you actually surrender everything to God? Do I just need to pray more? I know there’s no formula for it, but I would deeply appreciate any input. Thanks, it means a lot.

Hey dear friend, thank you for sharing your concerns: it really is a scary thing to think about “surrendering to God.” It’s a very Christianese thing to say, and I think it carries a lot of unnecessary baggage that we might need to dismantle before finding true surrender.

The thing is, it seems that some of the church-culture has taken on an “Epic Hollywood” type thrill-seeking, and it assumes “radical” is the same as selling all your stuff and moving to a third world village and living off indigenous worms. The word “surrender” is sometimes abused to mean “your life only means something if you give up everything and become a pastor and evangelize in a hostile forbidden city.”

While it’s true that God might uppercut you into a completely crazy situation for His work, Jesus also said to count the cost. It means to know what you’re getting into. It means that we surrender our abilities and gifting and resources to the appropriate place for a sustainable daily sacrifice.

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