I’ll never forget that Sunday morning in 2008 standing in the row of chairs in my church’s auditorium surrounded by my church family as the pastor was giving the invitation. I have no idea what song they sang for the invitation that morning, but I do know that God was calling me to surrender. My eyes were closed and I was wrestling. You see, God was calling me to full time ministry work. But I knew I wasn’t called to be a pastor. So how in the world could I surrender to full time ministry but it not be in a church? This made no sense to me! But that prompting by the still small voice (which felt like an elephant on my chest at this moment) made it clear, this is what God wants me to do. So, I went forward, knelt and prayed this prayer, I remember it like it was yesterday. “God, I know you haven’t called me to be a pastor, but I know you’re calling me to surrender to full-time ministry so that’s what I’m doing right now. I’m yours, my life is yours, take me where you want me. In Jesus name, Amen.” A few months later I was offered a position at the nation’s largest Christian radio station and I’ve been serving in full time ministry ever since.
I learned some valuable lessons from this pivotal moment in my life. And I gathered them from an Old Testament passage in I Kings 19:19-21
19 So he departed from there and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen in front of him, and he was with the twelfth. Elijah passed by him and cast his cloak upon him. 20And he left the oxen and ran after Elijah and said, “Let me kiss my father and my mother, and then I will follow you.” And he said to him, “Go back again, for what have I done to you? 21And he returned from following him and took the yoke of oxen and sacrificed them and boiled their flesh with the yokes of the oxen and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he arose and went after Elijah and assisted him.
So here are the three takeaways from this passage regarding surrender.
We see this when Elijah cast his cloak on Elisha, that Elisha left the oxen right there and immediately started preparing. We see this in the New Testament too when Jesus chose his disciples.
Look in verse 21. You can’t get more surrendered than having a massive cook out and eating all your livestock! That is being completely surrendered!
I’ve always thought it was cool that in verse 20 he had to make sure he went and told his parents. I can’t think of anything more responsible than telling momma where I’m going! Smart man!
Obviously, there is a lot more that could be said but I hope this brief look into surrender is blessing to you. What is calling you to surrender? Will you do it quickly, completely and responsibly?
Moody Radio, Sr. Business Development Manager