“And so, dear brothers, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is your spiritual worship.” – Romans 12:1
Surrender is a contemptible concept in our generation. “Self” continues to be the golden calf of a people who want to acknowledge God on the one hand and who want to live for themselves on the other.
The truth is there is no way to know God’s will apart from surrender. Paul is saying in verse 1, “Let God have your body.” God is ready to assume full responsibility for the life wholly yielded to Him.
Surrender, according to Romans 12:1 should not come grudgingly but gratefully. Paul said, “give your bodies to God because of all that he has done for you.” The attitude I have about surrender is as important as the action of surrender.
Paul was also teaching the Roman Christians that their surrender should be “living and holy.” Surrender should be marked by sincerity and separation. There should be a “ring of authenticity” to the life of every Christian. That authenticity should make the Christian’s life noticeably different from the world.
A final remark about surrender in Romans 12:1 reveals that surrender must be a worshipful act. He said, “—the kind he will find acceptable. This is your spiritual worship.” Surrender is essential to knowing the presence and the plans of God. When our surrender is motivated by worship we will know who He is and what He wants.
Bruce Larson tells how he helped people struggling to surrender their lives to Christ:
For many years I worked in New York City and counseled at my office any number of people who were wrestling with this yes-or- no decision. Often I would suggest they walk with me from my office down to the RCA Building on Fifth Avenue.
In the entrance of that building is a gigantic statue of Atlas, a beautifully proportioned man who, with all his muscles straining, is holding the world upon his shoulders. There he is, the most powerfully built man in the world, and he can barely stand up under this burden.
“Now that’s one way to live,” I would point out to my companion, “trying to carry the world on your shoulders. But now come across the street with me.”
On the other side of Fifth Avenue is Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, and there behind the high altar is a little shrine of the boy Jesus, perhaps eight or nine years old, and with no effort he is holding the world in one hand. My point was illustrated graphically.
We have a choice. We can carry the world on our shoulders, or we can say, “I give up, Lord; here’s my life. I give you my world, the whole world.”
If you would know His will, give up yours!