This is one of my fave posts, I wrote several years ago for a blog titled EmpowerMoments. Writing and editing for EmpowerMoments was so awesome and it pulled so much out of me. This one particular post is when God made me aware of how I was holding on to my life through a movie scene. Check it out below! And to reread the original post and to watch the video of the scene, here is the link: Holding On Too Tight!/
A while back, I was thinking about the lessons and messages that I have been receiving about surrendering. At that very moment a movie scene popped up in my mind. It was a scene from a comedy/drama/romance movie called Ghost (1990). In this particular scene, con-artist Oda Mae (played by Whoopi Goldberg) is instructed by Sam (Patrick Swayze) to give a FOUR MILLION DOLLAR check to nuns because Sam wants to make sure the money is used for good and out of the hands of his former friend/colleague Carl.
With clinched teeth, a forced smile, and a tight grip, Oda Mae has a hard time giving up that check. I like to give, but I probably would have a hard time releasing that check too. Four million dollars! Watching this scene is hilarious, but the Holy Spirit helped me to realize that Oda Mae responds like many of us, and particularly me, with our lives.
If you cling to your life, you will lose it, and if you let your life go, you will save it. (Luke 17:33 NLT) Maybe we grip our lives because we want to continue holding onto the control of our lives and do things our way. Maybe it is because we want to obey and surrender only when it is convenient. Perhaps we think that if we surrender, we are going to lose our lives physically. It is possible that we believe that God doesn’t want us to have joy and fulfillment or just maybe we think life is satisfactory the way it is. Even more, we are probably focused on pursuing worldly things or we lack patience and trust in God to do what He says and has proven He can do. In any event, we are afraid to let go and give control to God.
I must remember that when God created me, He didn’t intend for me to live independent of Him. Therefore, in order to move forward in my Christian walk, I must fully SURRENDER!
I have been gripping my life like Oda Mae gripped that check. I have been gripping everything that God wanted control over or wanted me to release. I have been gripping my many plans, my fears, my money, my concerns of what others think about me, my dating/love life (or lack thereof) and my need to do everything and be everything for everyone. I have also given Him areas of my life and subsequently I have taken them back. I’d say I believe and then the next minute I don’t believe. Jesus asked the boy’s father, “How long has he been like this?” “It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.” “‘If you can’?”said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.” Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” (Mark 9:21-24 NIV)
Since I have been alerted to my lack of surrender to God, the Holy Spirit has helped me loosen my grip on my life and those areas that I gave God little to no access. I have also surrendered plans that were of good intentions because it wasn’t what God wanted me to do at the time. I have finally severed the last means of communication between me and my ex-boyfriend/first love; I am going to trust in God to bring a God-fearing, handsome man along just right for me. I have learned that I have to seek God’s counsel in everything I do. I have also learned that I can’t be everything for everyone. It is okay to take the ‘S’ (Superwoman) off my chest unless that ‘S’ stands for SURRENDER (everything to God).
Through the testimonies of Hannah and Ruth, I am reminded that when you trust God and let go, you gain so much more! Hannah, who yearned and prayed fervently for a child, gave her son back to the Lord. She promised God that if He gave her a son she would do this so she took him to the priest and allowed the priest to raise and ready him for his destiny. (1 Samuel 1:1 – 2:10) She made him a coat and visited him every year but she had to let go. Ruth left her family to go with Naomi, her deceased husband’s mother. She surrendered to God and a new course for her life. Consequently, she married again, gave birth to her first child, and was able to also bless Naomi—her mother-in-law.
Surrendering my life doesn’t necessarily mean I lose it physically. Instead I will gain my life, the life God designed for me all along with peace, fulfillment, and deeper intimacy with God. Surrendering my life doesn’t just benefit me, it benefits others too. Oda Mae didn’t get that money but she was able to help bless the nuns and their charity as well as help Sam unite with the love of his life, Molly, and save her from danger.
Thank You for pruning me, defining my character, and setting me apart. It is not easy to go through this process, nor is it easy to render control of my life to You. But please help me let go! Help me to trust You and remember that my life is no longer my own. I am here to glorify You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!
Ladies, today I EMPOWER you to trust the Lord with your lives. After all, He knew you before you were in your mothers’ wombs. He created you and knows your purposes. He has your best interest at heart and will never fail you. So, don’t worry about your children. Put them in God’s hands. Release that person with forgiveness and God’s Love. Let go of that relationship He doesn’t approve of. Seek Him before you make plans. Let go of always needing control. God is qualified to manage your life more than you. When you let go, you’ll experience God’s liberty and peace!
What areas of your life do you need to surrender to God?