We all remember a time when we desperately wanted something. That time could be now for some of us. You have laid out a plan, prayed, fasted, trusted and surrendered it to God – only to find yourself picking it back up and trying to control the outcome when things do not seem to be working out as you hoped.

You have dreamed of being a parent, getting that dream job, performing on that big stage, getting married or starting that business for the longest time, but year after year nothing seems to be happening. You have seen people realize their dreams. You have seen friends get that very thing you have been praying for. You have celebrated them. You have also fought the envy that creeps up on you every time you have to celebrate others’ breakthroughs. You have gone through the cycle of trusting, hoping, doubting, despairing, back to being hopeful again, but you are yet to truly and fully surrender your plans over to God.

Elisabeth Elliot

Surrender is letting go. Trusting that our dreams, hopes and plans will work out, and letting go of control over the when and how. It is telling God your desires and then relinquishing the reins and allowing Him to do things His way. Inevitably, it is also letting go of plans that have not worked out and trusting that it was for your overall good.

Surrender involves relinquishing control, and that makes it very difficult. We like to think we are in control of our lives and have great plans laid out, complete with timelines for each accomplishment. The truth is though, we are not fully in control of our lives. You may make perfect preparations for your function, but you have no control over the weather, or how your guests will arrive, or what happens in the lives of your service providers. I have nothing against plans. By all means, we should make plans. Set goals and work plans on how to reach those goals. But as we do all this, we should remember that ultimately, we do not have complete control of how things will turn out. Things happen that leave you completely blindsided and bring even the best-laid plans crumbling down.

When things don’t work out as expected, letting go is particularly hard. We keep trying to figure out why it did not happen for us; was it something we did? Perhaps we did not hear God right. Maybe we did not try hard enough. So many ‘maybes’ and ‘what ifs’ fill our mind, fixing us on what we didn’t get and blinding us to the blessings that are right before us.

It helps to realize that control is rooted in fear; fear of what will happen if we fail. It is also fueled by arrogance; thinking that we know what is best for us. We are not meant to live our lives steeped in fear and arrogance. If you fully and truly surrender to God, you recognize that there is nothing to fear; He has your best interests at heart. And not only that, but He also knows exactly what is best for you as an individual. Abandoning yourself and your plans to Him opens you up to possibilities that you would never have imagined if you had stayed fixed on what you thought was best.

Letting go therefore is not giving up, it is trusting. It is accepting that we are not in control but trusting that there is one who is. One who knows the end from the beginning. Who knows if it will happen for you, when it will happen and how it will happen. And of all the possibilities, He not only knows but wants the best one for you. It is in this trusting that we find rest from worry, fretting, and trying to manipulate the situation to fit our plans. And it is only when we rest and accept where we are in life that we fully start living. Because yes, you might still be waiting for that dream to unfold, or you might have come to the realization that it will never happen for you, but that does not mean you do not have other things going for you. Choose to focus on those things.

This is easier said than done but also necessary to move forward. Give yourself time to acknowledge and grieve that which did not work out for you, but do not dwell on it. Embrace that which is given or has been there all along. Keep an open mind about the future. Do not compare yourself to others but believe that you are headed towards your best possible outcome when your plans are aligned with God’s.

In the famous words of Elsa

4 Replies to “Letting Go”

  1. Acknowledge and grieve about what didn’t work out, but do not stay there.
    My take home, sometimes we find ourselves too long on grieve and we miss out on the moment. Thanks girlie for the reminder..

  2. Surrender, letting go of the reigns , so that the outcome will also be acceptable to you who desires whatever it is. I ask myself, why does God give us the ability to plan ahead yet not give us the sovereignty to will as we wish?
    Takes me back to the garden of Eden. Adam was given that sovereignty to name all the animals God had created, whatever he said it was, it was. There was some kind of power in the word that God shared with Him.
    Enter sin, the corruption, the distortion, the wrong and self-centered desires. How can a loving Father then give autonomy to our plans and dream? I think they need to be moderated because they come laced with us more than with God’s will.
    So every plan, every thought, everything we want to be or have, must be set before our Father and left there so that He can lovingly work through His will for us, for our good, always for our good.
    Surrender to God is not giving up, it is patiently co-working with Him to do His will in your life.
    Thank you Yunia

    1. Well put Calota. I have always asked myself the same thing. Especially when I am holding on to what I believe is best for me. The trick is in trusting and believing God’s will for our life is always good. Then we can lay all of ours at His feet.

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