“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20
When I attended basic training at Cornwallis, I was invited to participate in the Red Cross Bronze medallion program so that I could be used as a lifeguard during my stay. We were taught various techniques and skills to ensure our success as protectors of the pool. Early in the program, we were tasked to rescue one of the instructors who would simulate being in distress. In my eagerness to be the hero I plunged in, swam to the victim and soon found myself tangled up in his thrashing arms almost to the point I was the victim. Generally, a drowning person can’t grasp the help being offered because they are struggling to keep their head above water.
Following my near disaster, we were taught the proper method of rescue. This involved swimming towards the victim and stopping out of reach of them. Then, while treading water, offer calming words and watch for signs of surrender. We were to let them thrash away and when they had exhausted themselves with their own efforts, we moved behind them, placed an arm in the rescue posture and brought them to shore. We could save them because the victim surrendered their fight and allowed themselves to be saved.
During this training, I learnt a powerful lesson about control and surrender. A reality that many Christ-followers struggle with as they seek to walk with Christ. They have invited Jesus to be in their life and yet have not surrendered it to Him. They want Him nearby to step in when they struggle, but when they feel comfortable, they want Him to back off while they retake control. Many put significant effort into being like Christ forgetting that because we choose to follow, Christ resides in us. We don’t have to imitate or mimic Jesus’ behaviour, we just have to let Him lead and then follow. We have been created in the image of God which is not just a physical resemblance; we inherited His character. Sin broke that image and the only way we can love as God desires, make good moral choices, and act selflessly is to allow Christ’s image to live within us.
Getting back to the basics in our relationship with Christ means we have to surrender. This is very difficult because the world shouts at us to take control. It says we are individuals in charge of our own destiny and if we are truthful with ourselves, we know that is not the case. Sadly, many brothers and sisters who love God do not experience the calmness, peace, comfort, or rest Jesus offers because they are trying to do things they think will evoke Jesus’ blessings. They are trying to control Jesus’ gifts by their efforts instead of saying, “Jesus will you take control and transform me into your image.”
Surrendering to Jesus does not mean giving up on life. Surrender means to yield ownership, to relinquish control over what we consider ours: our property, our time, our future. When we surrender to Jesus, we are merely acknowledging that; what we think we own belongs to Him. By surrendering to Jesus, we let go of whatever has kept us from wanting God’s ways first. If you’re going to flail away in life, Jesus will allow you. But if you’re going to be crucified with Christ and die to the things you are trying to control, let Jesus take control over every aspect of your life, not just the ones you think you can’t handle.
Here is a link for: “Prayer tips Part II″ for you to consider.