Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Life's a Dance

One of the last few nights I was in Colorado we had a swing dance party in our student lounge. I grew up around very musical, very artsy, very talented friends both at school and at church, but had never learned to swing dance. To be honest, I was nervous. I learn better when I figure it out on my own and then apply it. I want to have the steps and the moves down before I am in the spotlight. In other words, I want to have an element of perfection and control. This is a huge problem for me. As I sat on the couches watching some of my friends dance and have a good time, one of my friends came over, pulled me up off the couch, and was determined to teach me. He recognized my fear and was determined I would get over it. He began to teach me the steps, reminding me to follow his lead and I wouldn't have to do anything. I would do well for a little while and then lose my focus, remember I wasn't in control, worry about missing the next step, and I would stop following his lead...and we would mess up.

As I thought about this later, I realized that it is such a perfect example once again of the stage of life I am in right now. English major, remember? Analogy in everything. But it is the simple, beautiful, stupid, seemingly meaningless areas of my life that God seems to teach me the most through. My life is a complicated dance, and right now, my Savior is reminding me to follow His lead. I get frustrated and want to know the next step! I don't want to mess up, I don't want to miss it. But when I try to take back control, I mess up and I am no longer allowing my Jesus to lead me and it hinders the beautiful, intricate steps He wants to bless my life with, if I would just allow him to teach me, lead me, and walk me through the steps.

He is once again teaching me surrender. I have started to wonder the last couple weeks if the idea of surrender is something that the church has made up or if it is really something that is Biblical. I found an example of God's call to us to surrender in Matthew 19:16-26. Jesus is teaching His disciples and a rich young man comes to Him and asks how he can have eternal life. Jesus tells him to first follow the commandments, and then sell everything he has, and come, follow Jesus. The man went away saddened because he wasn't willing to give it all up to follow Jesus. We may look at this story and see a very drastic example of surrender, but isn't that what God calls us to do? To be willing to give it all up, every aspect of our lives (because He gave it it to us and it all belongs to Him anyway), and follow Him? If we truly believe that He is sovereign (in control), and our provider, then shouldn't surrender be easy? Ha, no! We are selfish creatures that desire to do it on our own...when we realize that doing it on our own means falling flat on our face because we are simply not capable, then we run to our Savior.

Surrender means to give up, abandon, yield. None of those things are easy for us. When I realized that I had to follow my friend to have the most fun possible, I realized the freedom of just releasing control and dancing. My picture of surrender may be childish but here it is: I picture myself in a field of wild flowers with a blue sky overhead and all I want to do is open my arms, close my eyes, twirl around, and praise my Creator for the freedom that comes with giving it all to Him.

I have a new I AM (if you don't understand this then check out my I AM post from earlier in the summer). I have been sweetly broken and I AM wholly surrendering. I AM ready, Lord, send me.

Surrendering it all,

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