What does it mean to surrender to God and why do we need to surrender to Him? If surrendering to Him is important, are there ways to surrender to God?
Discover 11 WAYS TO SURRENDER TO GOD including a FREE 30-DAY SURRENDER CHALLENGE PRINTABLE with scriptures to help you focus each day on surrendering your life to the Lord.
WHAT DOES SURRENDER MEAN?
It’s important to dig in and find the meaning of words. If you don’t know what a word means, how are you to know its application? We are beginning our surrender journey from a correct foundation using these tools to help us. Let’s dig in!
The origin of the word surrender:
from sur- “over” + rendre “give back”, to give (something) up, give up, deliver over, to give oneself up
Although, the word surrender doesn’t exist in the Bible in terms of our relationship with God, there are other words that have a similar reference to it in the Bible. One scripture that has strong similarities is found in Matthew 10:38, which says,
“And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.”
The words take his means:
to take with the hand, lay hold of, any person or thing in order to use it; to take up a thing to be carried, to take upon one’s self
Other words like surrender is submit, obey, and yield.
Submit in the Bible means:
to arrange under, to subordinate, to subject, put in subjection, to subject one’s self, obey, to submit to one’s control, to yield to one’s admonition or advice, to obey, be subject
Obey in the Bible means:
to hear (perceive by ear), to hear of or concerning, to hear (have power to hear), to hear with attention or interest, listen to, to understand (language), to hear (of judicial cases), to listen, give heed, to consent, agree, to grant request, to listen to, yield to, to obey, be obedient
Yield in the Bible means:
to be persuaded, to suffer one’s self to be persuaded; to be induced to believe: to have faith: in a thing, to believe, to be persuaded of a thing concerning a person, to listen to, obey, yield to, comply with, to trust, have confidence, be confident
WHY DO WE NEED TO SURRENDER TO GOD?
So, why do we need to surrender to the Lord?
The Lord designed us to have a personal, intimate relationship with Him and the only way to do that on our part is to give Him our whole hearts through surrender – laying our life down for Him.
Life is hard and challenging sometimes. If we believe that God has the best in mind for us, we need to also surrender our will and way of doing things for His will and His way of doing things.
God knows the end from the beginning, so then that must mean that everything we’re going through now is not new to Him. In fact, He saw it coming. He knew it was going to happen all along. And since He knew you were going to come across what is happening to you now, He wants to help you and guide your steps, not so that you can avoid the challenges in your life, but so that you can make it through all for His glory. To surrender to God involves our heart’s position.
If surrender is to “give up”, the Lord is saying we need to give up our thoughts and ways for His thoughts and ways.
The world forms it ways where everything needs to make sense. The Word of God, however, gets distorted and questioned because the world changes and if everything needs to make sense and be politically correct, then we are not standing for anything in fact. We take the Bible and make its principles applicable to the world’s ways, instead of taking the world’s ways and making it applicable to the principles of the Bible.
Biblical principles will forever remain the same – they will never change, and neither does the Lord; we are the ones that change. We trade the right things for good things, and we trade God’s ways of providing with rest, for our way of providing through hard work. Ultimately, we trade the kingdom of God for the kingdom of darkness.
The process of surrender (which is constant, and not a one-time event) brings our hearts to a soft place, where we position ourselves to hear from the Lord whether we like what He says or not. As we surrender to God laying our lives down, trust and faith come, and we can then move on this earth doing the will of the Father with boldness and confidence affecting lives for Him.
11 WAYS TO SURRENDER TO GOD
1. Acknowledge God
When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. (Mark 8:34)
By acknowledging that you are in need of a Saviour, you are saying that you cannot do things alone and without God; in fact you NEED Him to live. Take time today to acknowledge God as your Father, and let Him know that you need. Him.
Are there areas of your life that you have lived on your own by your own strength, without God? Consider surrendering these areas or your life to the Lord and acknowledge that you are in need of a Saviour; you need Him!
2. Heart Check
Therefore the Lord said: “Inasmuch as these people draw near with their mouths and honor Me with their lips, but have removed their hearts far from Me, And their fear toward Me is taught by the commandment of men, (Isaiah 29:13)
The only person who knows if your heart is pure and if you have a relationship with the Lord, is you and the Lord. No one can say whether you hunger and thirst for what He wants. No one fully knows if have areas of your life with sin and disobedience, except you and the Lord. To surrender to God our lives, means that sometimes we’ve got to give up things that we enjoy in life, but know aren’t right or need to be sacrificed.
Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him. (1 John 5:14-15)
Prayer is a vital necessity as our interaction with our Father. Through prayer, we are able to find out what God wants us to do in certain situations or what God is saying about specific needs and how to get access to resources. If we don’t take time in prayer, we are missing out on sharing, hearing and interceding for others.
4. Renew Your Mind
Beloved friends, what should be our proper response to God’s marvelous mercies? I encourage you to surrender yourselves to God to be his sacred, living sacrifices. And live in holiness, experiencing all that delights his heart. For this becomes your genuine expression of worship. Stop imitating the ideals and opinions of the culture around you,[a] but be inwardly transformed by the Holy Spirit through a total reformation of how you think. This will empower you to discern God’s will as you live a beautiful life, satisfying and perfect in his eyes. (Romans 12:1-2 TPT)
A huge part of our lives is how we think. We need to renew our minds about God’s ways, and if we don’t, we are leaving our minds with room for the enemy to cause havoc. There have been many studies done to show that what we think about can cause physical, mental and emotional illnesses. Our thought life is absolutely powerful. Take your thoughts captive and do not let them become your life, if they are not from the Word of God.
Are you allowing thoughts that aren’t bringing about Godly transformation? Take time to think about your thoughts, surrendering them to the Lord. Choose to take your thoughts captive, and renew your mind with the Word of God.
5. Meditate on God’s Word
This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. (Joshua 1:8)
When you commit to changing your thought life, it’s important to fill your mind with the correct things. We can meditate on things that are of God and not of God. I’ve heard it said that meditating on the wrong things brings about fear, but meditating on the correct things brings about faith. Spend time in the Word of God to refresh and revive you. It stirs up your most holy faith and brings about necessary correction so that you become set free and with the ability to move forward in life.
6. Say What God Says
For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. (Mark 11:23)
To say what God says is crucial to living a life of faith and for transformation to take place within us. It is possible to speak God’s Word without it being revealed in us. So we must connect the Word of God by asking Holy Spirit to reveal the Word so that we can confidently say what God says about us. It’s important to surrender to God our words for His.
7. Letting Go
““I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will[b] ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.” (John 15:5-8)
Surrender often reveals things in us that need removing. We need to let go of control, stripping away all the things that do not speak of God in our lives. This process isn’t easy, and in fact can feel very raw and revealing. When a gardener prunes its shrubs, it does so to remove dead and rotten material, so that the power is for producing fruit.
Are there areas in your life where pruning needs to or is taking place? Ask Holy Spirit to reveal areas of your life that you need to let go and surrender to God, so that you will be a child of His that bears fruit.
8. Worship the Lord
God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” (John 4:24)
Living a life of surrender to God is our response to Him, which includes praise and worship. Singing songs to the Lord with an attitude of gratefulness and thankfulness redirects our thoughts and our feelings. Apart from God, we cannot do anything, so our posture of worshipping the Lord can only take place when we know the One whom we worship.
9. Hear What The Spirit Is Saying
However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. John 16:13
It’s important to have an intimate relationship with Holy Spirit. Holy Spirit speaks to us saying what the Father would have us to do. Hearing from God does not come through effort; it comes through surrender. So, to know what to do in life (whether it be yours or someone else’s), how to do it, and when, we must hear from Holy Spirit and surrender to Him.
10. Do What The Spirit is Saying
But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. (James 1:22)
Fruit or corresponding works is a by-product of being a child of God. Faith isn’t developed in us through striving, but through surrender. It’s impossible to please God without faith, otherwise we would be full of knowledge, revelation and understanding, but no application. Living a life of faith doing what Holy Spirit says to do confidently and boldly is out of a life of surrender.
But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. (Matthew 6:33)
Surrendering our lives and hearts to God is a constant daily, hourly and by-minute process. We constantly battle our flesh and the things of the world.
To help you in these 11 ways to surrender to God and the amazing journey He has you on, here is a FREE 30-DAY SURRENDER CHALLENGE PRINTABLE to get you started!
30-Day Surrender Challenge FREE Printable!
To surrender to God our lives, requires a laying down our ways for His ways time and time again. Is there one way that resonated with you the most? Feel free to share in the comments below.
Anchored in Jesus,