Surrender to Jesus (Being Like the Sinful Woman Part 7)
This is Part 7 in my Blog Series Being Like the Sinful Woman which was originally published during Lent 2019. I introduced the story of the sinful woman from Luke 7 in Part 1. Please start there if you have not read it already.
The sinful woman from Luke 7 possessed seven attributes that are indispensable when coming to Jesus. The sixth is that she surrendered to Jesus. In ancient cultures, kissing the feet of another was an act of surrendering to them. For example, when a military general surrendered to an opponent he would bow down and kiss his opponent's feet. The Scriptures record that through the prophet Isaiah, the Lord foretold that the kings of Israel's enemies "shall bow down to the ground to [Israel] and lick the dust from your feet." (Isa 49:23).
When the sinful woman entered the house of the Pharisee she knelt at Jesus' feet and began to kiss them. This was an act of surrender to Him and His authority over her life. She was offering herself to Him completely. In the March 12 devotion from his amazingly insightful book My Utmost for His Highest, Oswald Chambers tells us that "True surrender will always go beyond natural devotion," and to "Beware of stopping anywhere short of total surrender to God." In the next day's devotion he tells us that "If we are truly surrendered, we will never be aware of our own efforts to remain surrendered. Our entire life will be consumed with the One to whom we surrender."
Chambers also gives us a warning. "Beware of talking about surrender if you know nothing about it." This is good advice. I think often times our society says things like "Jesus take the wheel," but do not really mean it. We aren't really ready to completely give ourselves to Jesus. Chambers goes on to tell us that we "will never know anything about [surrender] until [we] understand that John 3:16 ['For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life']means that God completely and absolutely gave Himself to us. In our surrender, we must give ourselves to God in the same way He gave Himself for us--totally, unconditionally, and without reservation."
The sinful woman was at the end of her rope. She was ready to surrender herself to God completely and she demonstrated it by kneeling down and kissing Jesus' feet. Am I ready to surrender to Jesus completely? I mean it's easy to "surrender" to God when He calls me to do what I wanted to do anyway. But what if He calls me to do something I don't particularly want to do. For example, what if He called me to leave my comfortable existence here in the U.S. and move to some developing southeast Asian country and live in some primitive village sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ? Would I be willing to go? Would I really be willing to pack up everything, give up my life for Him and go there to do His will? Absolutely I would. I've already surrendered to God. I counted the cost of following Jesus before I committed myself to follow Him. (Luke 14:28). And I realized then that the cost of not following Him, the cost of not surrendering to Him completely, far outweighed the cost of following and obeying Him.
Lord, please help me to daily surrender myself to Your holy will. I desire no will of my own, for Your will is beautiful and perfect and my will is broken and selfish. I wish to be a living sacrifice to You Lord, to do as You please, to obediently serve You forever.