surrender in the real world

Last night, there was a worship night at school. It was good, it was intense. I hugged everyone I knew, and even some people I didn’t. A lot of people cried, myself included. But it got me thinking.

Surrender is a very Christian word. I mean, the Christian community uses it a lot—we surrender our hearts, hopes, dreams, desires. We surrender and let the Lord lead us. We raise our white flag, we surrender all to You. It seems that we are always surrendering something.

Surrender is good, you guys. His ways are higher than ours, and there’s no way we could do life by ourselves; we have to surrender our lives. That sounds so Sunday School-y, but it’s true. I love me my Passion songs. Surrender is necessary. I don’t mean to sound like I’m dismissing it as a religious gimmick. It’s not—it’s important and meaningful and we all need it.

Here’s the catch, though. We surrender, and that’s great, but then our phones buzz or we have to go to work or someone interrupts you and it’s like, news flash: we live in the real world. The real world is unfortunately is hurting and hurtful and all kinds of crazy. We are human, and though we surrender ourselves and live in God’s freedom and love, there’s always this constant nagging to do life by ourselves.

Do more.

Do better.

Prove yourself.

Do not fail.

Have friends and a social life and do all your work perfectly.

Have life all figured out and never ever mess up and

always.

be.

perfect.

Y’all. The struggle is real.

We have to fight for surrender. Second period Precalculus on Monday morning is not going to feel like singing a worship song did last night. As much as we may wish otherwise, we don’t live in a bubble.

We have to fight to live in Christ because, let’s face it, there’s no way the enemy is going to let us forget for a second how hard life can be. We’re told to just let the Lord take care of everything and yeah that feels great for a little while but then we remember than we have that really big thing coming up and we’re so not ready for it so let’s go work on that.

This isn’t about rest, at least not in the way I’ve come to think of it. This is surrender. This is deliberately choosing to know and understand that God has this all under control and we don’t have to worry about it. We have to be intentional about making ourselves live as we were meant to.

Make time to rest. Don’t look at your phone until after you’ve spent some time in your Bible (I’m so guilty of this one). Focus on the Lord over breakfast/coffee/your commute/whatever time you have. Your life isn’t going to slow down. In fact, it’s probably only going to get worse. You’ll finish all your homework only to get more tomorrow.

Seek out community. For me right now, this means trying to make myself go up to people I want to be friends with and saying that I want to be their friend. There are cool people that I tend to admire from afar and wish I was around them more, so now I need to take the initiative to do that. But less personally, think about it. Who haven’t you talked to in awhile? Ask them how you can be praying. Eat lunch. Send them a text out of the blue. Write a letter or email, not a text. Skype/Facetime. And when you talk to them, go deep. It’s terrifying to use a big word like vulnerable, but that’s what it is. It doesn’t just come. It takes effort.

Most importantly, you’re not alone. Everyone lives in the real world. Don’t be overwhelmed (again, not something I’m particularly great at because “if I don’t do my homework I’m going to fail at life what if I fail at life” is a accurate description of my train of thought at times. Surrender and rest in it. There is a God who loves you incredibly and wants you to trust Him and cast your cares on Him. There are people around you who feel the same way you do. We’re all stressed, we’re all tired, and at the end of the day, sometimes there’s just surrender.

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