Fully depending on God
Surrendering to God seems easy, but as we’ve seen its harder than we think to surrender our will and follow God. I don’t know about you, but in any relationship I find that I do much better when I have a clear understanding of my role. Honestly, I don’t know that I have ever clearly understood role in relation to God, but that is changing.
According to Henry Cloud and John Townsend in their book How People Grow, we need to do four things to have right relationship with God. First, we need to fully depend on God, we have to stop controlling, we must give up playing judge and jury, and we have to live according to God’s will. I know, right. Harder than it sounds. We are going to discuss each of these in a separate post, starting with fully depending on God.
Being fully dependent on God means that I have to trust that no matter my circumstances God will provide exactly what I need. The hard part is that I sometimes don’t agree in the moment with what God provides. You know that feeling of complete desperation and rage when the AC goes out on a hot and humid July afternoon. Oh, right, I forgot to mention that it is Friday afternoon on Independence Day weekend and the on-call plumbing and heating guys are backed up. They might get to you on Sunday. HOW WILL YOU SURVIVE?!?! Remember, I want to be comfortable at all costs! Being hot and sticky all weekend long is not comfortable and I live in America where we have AC and fans, I shouldn’t have to suffer this way. I know this sounds petty, but let’s be honest, for most Americans these are probably the majority of our problems—inconveniences at best—and the areas where we most struggle to depend on God.
I’m good with the big stuff. Cancer in a relative? Yep, God’s got this. Death of a loved one? God. The state of the American economy? God. My husband’s refusal to take out the garbage and pick up his dirty clothes? Get out of the way, God. I’ll show him what how to respect me. I’ve got this. Or do I? Unfortunately, my way of controlling things is usually some passive-aggressive action like deciding to pile the garbage up by the back door rather than calmly having a conversation about roles and responsibilities.
Remember that sometimes God knows that I need a bit of discomfort to grow. It’s uncomfortable for me to engage in direct confrontation, so I’ll choose resentment or passive-aggressive action before fully depending on God to give me the right words to calmly discuss garbage removal with my husband. Even in the seemingly small things, I must depend on God. I’m not good on my own. I need him and that’s the truth.
Contributed by Liz Hunt
Cloud, H., & Townsend, J. (2004). How people grow: What the Bible reveals about personal growth. Zondervan.