I Surrender All

The hymn, I Surrender All, is a great sermon-closer, and it has been used as such many times at my church. It has a singable tune and meaningful lyrics that cause one to really think them through as they're sung.

I usually have a hard time singing this one with gusto because I have to evaluate my heart each time I hear it: do I really surrender all, and if not, am I ready to?

There have been moments when I've simply closed my mouth and my eyes, praying through the song that the Lord would soften my heart to surrender because I knew I wasn't ready. I knew there were habits and idols I didn't want to lay down, and I didn't feel right singing that I was surrendering all when in my heart I was not.

The most recent time we sang this hymn, however, I did join in with my voice for the entire song, and I even lifted my hands as if to say, "Here is my life, Lord. I surrender all."

This occasion was no different than the others; I am well aware of how prone to wander is my heart, how quickly I retract my sincerest devotions and commitments to the Lord for the sake of ease and self-service.

Yet this time I sensed the fullness of Christ's grace toward me, and how His sacrifice covers my broken vows and my failure to always place Him first in my heart.

In Romans 7, Paul laments the fact that, though his desire is to obey God's law, his sinful nature battles against his spirit and often wins. This is not because the Holy Spirit isn't powerful within us but because we will not reach perfection until we see Christ face to face. In the meantime, we fight against the flesh to choose what is honoring to the Lord, and we often win, but sometimes we lose. This is the angst we face as redeemed people confined temporarily in a world still full of sin.

But Paul ends the chapter this way:

"What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!"

Paul acknowledges that he will always struggle against sin in this life, but he rejoices that Christ's sacrifice is enough to deliver him and cover him with grace!

Friends, the Lord knows our hearts. He knows we long to glorify Him with our lives, and He knows that we are weakened by our flesh. He knows we want to obey, to surrender all, but He knows we will always struggle to do so.

That is why we can say to Him, "I surrender all," knowing that while we are guaranteed to fail, His grace is sufficient for us, and He is pleased with us.

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Hello! I'm Faith. I'm a verbal processor who wants to love the Lord and love people with all my heart, soul, mind and strength. I write to think and think to write. I don't drink coffee. I am a dogless dog lover. I enjoy hosting large parties in my home, and I enjoy being alone. Join me in looking to Him and pursuing A Radiant Face.


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