If you have breath in your lungs you have, or have had at one point, a dream or desire. Maybe your dream is to one day own a business, have a baby, adopt a child, travel the world, get married, learn a new skill or to shed those pesky lbs. Whatever it may be, we all have our box of desires tucked away in the recesses of our minds with the hope that one day they will surface and come to fruition.
Yes, like you, I have dreams and desires. Some have come to pass and there are some that I am still waiting for them to unfold. Sometimes I am patient in this process and sometimes I get incredibly frustrated, sad and moody (sorry to all my close friends, y’all are champs!) wondering WHY I have to learn THIS much patience!
I have tried the path of least resistance and basically told God, “Thanks for nothin’, I’ll take it from here. I’m gonna take matters into my own hands.” Ok, spoiler alert…that has never ended well, ever. I have gotten myself into more hot messes and situations that have left me empty and/or begging forgiveness due to my careless concocted plans. Even as I am writing this I am sitting here shaking my head and letting out a few giggles at the things I have done. Hindsight is always 20/20.
A couple of weeks ago I had one of those powerful, deep and intense moments that I believe was a milestone marker for my journey. I wasn’t looking for this moment, it almost seemed like this moment found me. We had just finished a worship set at our church and I found myself longing to get away (ok, truth be told I wanted to run fast and hard and hide away from the world). I didn’t quite understand this heavy feeling I was feeling but it was rushing over me so quick and hard I felt like Niagra Falls was pounding down into my soul. I was able to thankfully sneak away into my office (convenience of working at the same place the conference was) and there I fell to my knees and the dam burst with a flood of tears to follow. It’s the kind of cry that is so intense no sound could be heard but a deep inaudible cry with yet no understanding. In those moments I know it’s ok to ask questions, God knows me and is ok that I love to ask questions. So I asked, “What the heck is going on, can you fill me in?” Within five seconds I heard (not audibly but in my spirit), “Surrender. Give me your dreams and lay down your desires.”
My initially reaction was to question if I heard Him right but, due to the influx of more tears I figured He hit the nail on the head. I did still ask, “Whyyyyyyy?!?!” Being the loving and gracious God He is He said, “You can’t hold fully on to Me while holding so tightly to your dreams and desires.” In that moment I knew. I knew I had to open my tightly fisted hand. As I physically opened my hands, I told the Lord in two simple words, “I surrender.” I immediately felt drenched with so much peace and love that saturated my soul.
What happened next surprised me a bit. His response to me opening my hand was this…”I am not asking you to give up your dreams or desires I am asking you to keep them always with an open hand.” (Cue the tears!!!) It was like the light switch got turned on! I was understanding (finally) what He meant. To keep my hands (dreams and desires) open while holding on to God. To keep my heart steadfast in love with the Creator of this universe. To continue to delight in Him and He will give the desires of our hearts (Psalm 37:4 paraphrase). To know that He truly does have my best interest at heart. He truly wants the best for me and for the advancing of His kingdom here on the earth.
I know all of this “hands open” talk can seem easier said than done. Even in the last two weeks I have had to consistently remind myself, “Keep those hands open, girl!” I will say this, the reward of obedience is worth it, every time! Do I know the end results to anything left open in my hands, nope, but I know the One who does and from experience, He is pretty trustworthy.
• What are you holding on to so tightly?
•What do you need to surrender and hold with an open hand?
I know it can seem scary and can even be painful to release. To be honest, there is no guarantee you’ll get back what you surrendered. I do know this, the blessing of sweet surrender and having a greater relationship with Father God is far greater than holding on to something that wasn’t ever ours to begin with.
•I hope you too can know the joys of sweet surrender.
Till we meet again…have a splendid day!