Just like that, here we are in 2019! A brand new year awaits. As some of you may know, I have taken up the habit of choosing a word to help me focus on my goals. After a wonderful 2018, I have reflected and taken inventory of my heart. Despite the progress of 2018, I’ve been found wanting in the area of surrender.
The control freak deep inside of me has been pushed aside many times, but she always seems to weasel her way back into the spotlight. In 2018, I found myself striving and brooding more than trusting and waiting. So, surrender it is for 2019. I step into January with an open mind, open heart, and open hands.
Pride and sense of independence hinder us from surrendering to God. Admitting this to myself was key in deciding on making 2019 a year of surrender. Here are some key ideas and scriptures to help anyone who wants to focus on surrender in the coming year.
LET GO OF YOUR LIFE TO FIND IT
God’s way of seeing and doing things is vastly different from our own. It goes against our nature to humble ourselves and lay down our lives. The fear of losing something or missing out tugs at our hearts. However, God promises that when we surrender, He will bless us in abundance.
And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself? -Luke 9:23-25 (ESV)
Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up. -James 4:10 (NIV)
I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. -John 10:9-10 (ESV)
ALL GIFTS, TALENTS, AND GROWTH COME FROM GOD
Every gift, talent, relationship, and material blessing is given to us by God. He empowers and enables us to work and succeed. Remembering that God is the source of every blessing is humbling and makes surrendering to Him a more pressing desire. He does His work through us, because He is the source of our strength.
He fed you with manna in the wilderness, a food unknown to your ancestors. He did this to humble you and test you for your own good. He did all this so you would never say to yourself, ‘I have achieved this wealth with my own strength and energy.’ Remember the LORD your God. He is the one who gives you power to be successful, in order to fulfill the covenant he confirmed to your ancestors with an oath. -Deuteronomy 8:16-18
I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow. It’s not important who does the planting, or who does the watering. What’s important is that God makes the seed grow. The one who plants and the one who waters work together with the same purpose. And both will be rewarded for their own hard work. For we are both God’s workers. And you are God’s field. You are God’s building. -1 Corinthians 3:6-9
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created. -James 1:17-18 (NIV)
OFFER YOURSELF TO GOD, NOT THE WORLD
The desire to achieve our goals and be successful is a powerful magnet that can pull us away from God if we aren’t careful. I know this from experience. By offering ourselves to God, our hopes and dreams become aligned with His will for our lives. This is the space I want to live in as the new year begins. Drawing close to the One who desires to give good gifts and bless me with abundant life makes much more sense than struggling on my own.
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. -Romans 12:1-2
So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world. -James 4:7-8 (NLT)
Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father but are from this world. And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever. -1 John 2:15-17 (NLT)
I pray that your new year is filled with blessings and the realization of goals for you. Above all, I pray you will end 2019 even closer to your Heavenly Father than you are today. God bless you and keep you as you surrender all to His loving care.
Hi! I’m Tracy…Christ-follower, wife, mama, writer, blogger, speaker, teacher, dreamer. I love Earl Grey Tea and quiet mornings. Here at Earl Grey and Yellow, the focus is striving to be faithful and appreciate the small things. So glad you stopped by. Please have a look around and subscribe to our newsletter and social media to stay connected.