I am working on a Bible Study called Becoming a Woman of Excellence by Cynthia Heald. I'm on the chapter about surrender. It is filled with questions like, "How does Paul's example of yielding his life (from Philippeans 3:1-10) challenge you?" and heart-piercing quotes like this one from Oswald Chambers: "There is only one thing God wants in us, and that is unconditional surrender." When I'm sitting at my desk in the quiet of the morning with my cup of coffee, it is easy to write down this answer: "My life belongs to Christ. He paid the greatest price for it. My life is hidden in Christ with God. That is the safest place I could ever be, so I can just rest, and not try to be in control." I absolutely know and believe that with all my heart.
There are times, though, when I forget. Like when I wake up in the morning to an empty house, and the first thing I see is my wheelchair. Or when the kids complain about dinner and have to be told 5 times to brush their teeth. Or when my whole body hurts, and especially when my heart is weary from the every day sameness of life.
This afternoon while I was asking myself, "Do I really need to change out of my pajamas?" I heard the Lord whisper to my heart that what I need to do is surrender. I think it's these daily moments that really count. It's my opportunity to count all things loss for the excellence of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. (Philippeans 3:8) It's no easy thing to count the big things like walking and living without pain as loss, but sometimes it's the small things that break my heart. Things like feeling like I'm in the way because my chair takes up so much space, or being able to pick something up off the floor. Sometimes I would love to simply hang out with my daughter in her room upstairs, or get the mail, or run up to the store for a gallon of milk. These are the things, as small as they are, that make me look at the bigger picture. That big picture is a beautiful one, because it is painted by the loving hand of my Savior. As I surrender these small things all throughout my life, and count them as loss, they all lead to the same place. The place of knowing Jesus and His faithful, amazing love for me.