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  • Writer's pictureTammy


Updated: Jun 14, 2021

A huge life lesson for me!

Someone once told me I need to "just surrender". That's hard for a recovering control freak to do!

So it's time I share what the Lord is trying to teach me about how he operates.

One of my favorite teachers puts it like this. When you are "working", (on whatever the situation is - kids, finances, health, fill in the blank) God is resting. He is waiting for you to give the situation to Him so He can do His work. And likewise, when you are "resting" (trusting that God is in control, and He wants to fix the situation more than you want it fixed), God is working! He is a gentleman like that. He'll sit back and wait as you go around the mountain of self-effort again and again. When you are finally tired of going around the mountain, and you give it to Him, He goes to work!

I'm learning that when I am "losing my peace" over a particular situation in my life (kids, finances, health, fill in the blank), and then I try to "fix it" in my own strength, I fall apart and nothing positive comes of it. Usually, stress comes in a form of sickness or anxiety in your life. Instead of trusting that God is the God of the universe, and that He might know best, and that I should trust Him, I think I have to use self-effort to control or fix the situation.

God is showing me that this is called "walking after the flesh". Most believers have been taught that walking after the flesh is a sexual sin or some other horrible sin. It is not. It is merely trusting in your own effort, instead of resting and trusting that God's got this! When we totally surrender all our self-efforts and simply believe that God is for us and He loves us, and he has our back, that is called "walking after the spirit" or "being obedient".

I like Romans 4:1-6 in the Passion Translation when it speaks of this:

Let me use Abraham as an example. 1 It is clear that humanly speaking, he was the founder of Judaism. What was his experience of being made right with God? 2 Was it by his good works of keeping the law? No. For if it was by the things he did, he would have something to boast about, but no one boasts before God. 3 Listen to what the Scriptures say: Because Abraham believed God’s words, his faith transferred God’s righteousness into his account. 4 When people work, they earn wages. It can’t be considered a free gift, because they earned it. 5 But no one earns God’s righteousness. It can only be transferred when we no longer rely on our own works but believe in the one who powerfully declares the ungodly to be righteous in his eyes. It is faith that transfers God’s righteousness into your account! 6 Even King David himself speaks to us regarding the complete wholeness that comes inside a person when God’s powerful declaration of righteousness is heard over our life. Apart from our works, God’s work is enough.

We also see this in Galatians 4:21-26 speaking about Abraham's two sons, one being born of the flesh {self-effort}, the other being born of the spirit (the result of a divine promise).

21–22 Tell me, do you want to go back to living strictly by the law? Haven’t you ever listened to what the law really says? Have you forgotten that Abraham had two sons; one by the slave girl, and the other by the freewoman? 23 Ishmael, the son of the slave girl, was a child of the natural realm. But Isaac, the son of the freewoman, was born supernaturally by the Spirit—a child of the promise of God! 24 These two women and their sons express an allegory and become symbols of two covenants. The first covenant was born on Mt. Sinai, birthing children into slavery—children born to Hagar. 25 For “Hagar” represents the law given at Mt. Sinai in Arabia. The “Hagar” metaphor corresponds to the earthly Jerusalem of today who are currently in bondage. 26 In contrast, there is a heavenly Jerusalem above us, which is our true “mother.” She is the freewoman, birthing children into freedom!

I hope this encourages you to look to and trust God for the answer to your situation instead of trying in your own self-effort to find an answer.



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