It takes time for a priceless pearl to form or for us to discover the inner beauty that comes from the trials of life. A pearl's perfection comes from the constant irritation of sand within an oyster. Life is filled with constant irritation. Those irritations can spur me on to spiritual growth or they can destroy what God wishes to produce. Whether good or bad, my life is a result of my attitude. “Rejoice always,” Paul encourages, “pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, NIV). It is God's will that I have a good attitude in all circumstances. I will rejoice—I will pray—I will praise no matter what happens. Trusting God with a “no–matter–what–happens attitude” can lift me above whatever I face. I surrender to the lesson—not to the circumstance.
“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy,” Paul instructs, “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, NIV). Do I want to be a living sacrifice? Do I yearn to have a sacrificial attitude that manifests itself in obedience, or do I fight against the lessons of life? Strength, joy, peace, and a “no–matter–what–happens attitude” come from surrender to God's transforming power.
Surrender is not an option, and it certainly does no good to rage against my circumstance. When God’s incredible mercy is my reason for living then giving myself is something that comes through the renewing of my mind by the power of the Holy Spirit. I yield to His lesson. I sacrifice “fight” against circumstances that are beyond my control. By gracefully accepting the pruning of the Vinedresser's hand upon my life, I accept the lesson found in His discipleship. Learning God's lesson becomes my passion.
The price He paid deserves my surrender, but I can never humanly count its cost. Too much mental analysis of the cost and I may retreat from the depth of inward commitment that surrender requires. Too little mental consideration of the cost and my surrender may not last. My surrender is my spirit to His. I just let go of who I think I am. I let go of my desires, of my agenda, of my control in every circumstance and every situation, and allow God to lead me. In allowing God be in charge I have spiritually accepted that letting go is worth everything for what I receive in return. It is in the moment of surrender of all that I struggle to control that I discover the grace of His peace (Philippians 4:6-7).
What an incredible gift! God who created me gives me the freedom of choice—to love Him or not love Him. I choose Him and yield the last claim to what I want. I now seek that priceless pearl. I will sell all of myself to Him in order to possess it. When I surrender all the shallowness of who I have been for the fulfillment of who He is, I discover that in surrender of His life for mine, I have become His pearl of greatest price. Such love is beyond my mind's ability to understand. But I don't need to understand. I just let it go, and accept the miracle of His priceless worth.
Copyright 2017 Lynn Hampton Lacher