When Surrendering Requires A Plan

“The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.” – Proverbs 21:5 (NIV)

I’ve had moments in my life in which surrendering meant sobbing at my kitchen sink, snot across my face, hands in the air, saying, “I know you have this, God.” Okay, the hands in the air part isn’t true, but I’ve definitely had some very emotional surrenders in my life which left my dog cocking his head and whimpering at the sight of me.

But other times, surrendering has meant talking to God, and then developing a plan.
When I was in college, I was convicted about my TV habit (I swear I have more heinous sins than this in my past). First of all, I was watching shows that made me actually want the characters to have affairs. Who am I?! Second of all, days would lapse with my bible remaining closed while I gorged on trashy sitcoms.

In this case, surrendering my time to God didn’t need a lot of the theatrics I’m typically prone to. I needed God’s help, and I needed a daily surrender plan. So I poured my heart out to God, and decided that I would refrain from turning on the TV each day until I’d spent time in the Word.

And while after forming my plan, there were days when I neither read my bible nor sat in front of the television, eventually the extra time in the Word really changed my tastes, enabling me to fully surrender this worthless habit to God.

A year later when I met the man who would become my husband, I faced a whole new area in which to surrender to God. Y’all, my husband is really good-looking. And super smart. And totally hot when he plays the piano.

And I really wanted to make out with him.

But I also wanted to surrender to God’s call for purity, and I knew I couldn’t have both.
I needed a plan. I prayed (repeatedly) for God to give me strength, and then my future husband and I laid some ground rules concerning saving hanky-panky for our wedding day, the most beneficial being that we wouldn’t kiss if we were in the horizontal position.

See, surrendering to God’s will for my relationship meant I needed a daily surrender. And often for me, a daily surrender means I need safeguards in my life. Because people, I am weak on my own.

With that, are you having trouble surrendering an area of your life to God’s will? If so, I challenge you to keep praying, and to come up with a practical boundary or two to help you fully hand that bad boy over to the Lord.

And in the meantime, tell me your own surrender stories – the crying-at-the-kitchen-sink-with-hands-raised kinds and the I-need-a-plan-for-this-sucker ones as well. (And while we’re at it, if you’ve ever cried so hard you freaked your dog out, I’d love to hear that, too!) ~Christina

Sacred Story is honored to have Christina Ledbetter as a guest contributor this month. To hear more, visit Christina’s blog.

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