Mar 11, 2011


Most of my Saturdays from November through March begin the same way. I get up at 5:30 am, get dressed, take some time to pray and read the Bible, drink a protein shake, and eat some peanut butter toast. At 6:15 am, I take my hockey bag and sticks to my vehicle and drive to the local ice arena where I will get suited up for my first of two hockey games. At 8:00 am I will leave the ice, take off my skates and some of my gear, change into a dry set of gear, take my hockey bag and sticks to my vehicle, and then drive to a different ice rink that is outdoors for my second hockey game. I usually play until 11:00; not a bad way to spend a Saturday morning with two different groups of guys and my youngest son Joshua (who plays at both games with me). 

Saturday, March 05, 2011, I woke up at 4:30 am; an hour earlier than normal. I found myself pondering whether or not it was ok for me to play hockey that day. I spent some time thinking about the question before me and praying about other things until I fell back asleep until the alarm went off at 5:30 am. At 5:30 am, I found myself deeply engrossed in the question of whether or not it was ok for me to play hockey that morning. I realized very quickly that I hadn’t even asked God what He thought. 

I had spent a few days before in prayer and at a conference, longing to go deeper in my relationship with God; longing to be more fully surrendered to His plans and direction for my life. At 5:30 am, “surrender” took on a whole different meaning. 

Surrender” means to yield to the possession or power of another; to give up oneself to another or to some influence, course, emotion, etc. It means to give up (let go), abandon, or relinquish. It also means to yield or resign in favor of another. 

At 5:30 am, I realized that I had gotten up as usual, with no thought that surrendering my life to the Lordship of Jesus Christ meant that I needed to lay it all down and not play hockey if He wanted me to. I may not have realized that His Lordship encompassed ALL of my life, every area of it, but He did. And He wasn’t going to let me get away with ignoring it. If I really wanted to be surrendered to Him, simply put, I needed to ask what He wanted me to do. To me, it was as serious to God as Abraham surrendering His son Isaac on the altar. The question set before me was: “would I do what He asked me to do?”; period.

Luke 9:57-62 came to mind: 57 Now it happened as they journeyed on the road, that someone said to Him, “Lord, I will follow You wherever You go.” 58 And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.” 59 Then He said to another, “Follow Me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” 60 Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and preach the kingdom of God.” 61 And another also said, “Lord, I will follow You, but let me first go and bid them farewell who are at my house.” 62 But Jesus said to him, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.

I realize that some may question my intensity and sanity with this type of pondering, and perhaps have answers (even scriptures) to give to me to justify my simply going and doing what I wanted to. I realized that God wasn’t against me playing hockey, He was asking me to ask Him. If I want Him to lead my life then I need to learn to ask; “What do You have in mind for me to do today?” This is true for the big things as well as the small things; Jesus wants it all. Surrender isn’t about giving up in a negative sense, it is about laying down rights. Surrender is a constant state of being, thinking, and acting. 

I don’t want to have assurance of heaven while wasting my time here on the earth. I want the Lord’s will for my life; my whole life. I don’t want to waste my life. I want to dedicate my life to serve Christ to the fullest, no matter what that means.

Every day we get new opportunities; what we do with them will be the real question asked of us. How fully will you surrender? Is Jesus REALLY the Lord of your life? 

21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ (Matthew 7:21-23)

"Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved."

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