abandon: on surrendering our lives to God

 

Being abandoned, even temporarily, feels devastating. Nothing else quite strikes at the core of who we think we are and what our perceived worth and value might be in another’s eyes.

Many of us feel the sting of shame at being rejected or abandoned by our birth parents, whether at birth , later on by the way we are treated, or as casualties of our parents’ splitting up.

Such things leave scars which can mar us for life, if we let them. I only began to fathom what unconditional, fully accepting, lavish love looked like when I came to faith in Christ in my late teens.

I still marvel over our Heavenly Father adopting me into His family, viewing me as His oh so precious, beloved child. And I am not alone in this, because that’s how He sees you too, my friend, and longs to be in a close, loving, intimate relationship with you.

There are some barriers in the way at first, most of all our sin. Though unbelief and rejection of His love can also be a hindrance to receiving it. Thankfully, Jesus made a way where there seemed to be no way.

His death on the cross and glorious resurrection are the means whereby we become reunited to God. They reveal how we, too, can learn to die to sin, overcome our shame, guilt and pain and rise again in newness of life with Him.

Once we see and believe just how much God loves us, we start to realise we are never as alone or abandoned as we might feel. And we are given daily grace and strength from Him.

Abandon

I want to become a prisoner of

Hope, abandon myself on the altar

of dependence, and rest in God’s

all-sufficiency—because he has given 

us the greatest abandonment of all

nailed fast to a wooden cross

 

Jesus chose to abandon himself

to death, to suffering, to ultimate sacrifice

for our sin, for our sake, for our lives

He chose the path less travelled, seeking

 

to be a servant of all, relinquishing

his kingly crown and throwing down

the gauntlet to the kingdom of darkness

which had us in its thrall

 

Now we, who were orphans of circumstance,

hostage to habit, taunted by temptation,

have become beloved daughters and sons, children

of God instead of life’s lost, unwanted

ones. We’ve received a fresh heritage

 

made rich by faith, given a brand new

start, new heart, clean slate, on which

our Father God can write his eternal glory

story—as we abandon ourselves willingly

to surrender, and close relationship with him

©joylenton2017

“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed. but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body” ~ 2 Corinthians 4:8-10 (emphasis mine)

Happy to be linking my (rather late), poetic #FMF words in companionship with fellow wordsmiths gathering at Kate Motaung’s site. Just click here to join us there. 

**NOTE** – If you’re seeking solace, you might like to read my poetic memoir journey of discovering grace in life’s hard places. It’s available free today to download here on Amazon Kindle.  🙂

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24 thoughts on “abandon: on surrendering our lives to God

    • Hello tardy FMF neighbour! Maybe Saturday is the new Friday, yes? I loved your take on this week’s prompt and appreciate your gracious words here. Thanks for stopping by. God bless you, friend. 🙂

  1. Your words are a beautiful way to share such a beautiful and life changing truth. God loves us more than we know. Even when it seems we are alone, He never leaves.

    Thank you for sharing your heart!

    Many blessings to you, dear sister/poet/friend! xoxo

    • Oh yes to this, Gayl: “God loves us more than we know. Even when it seems we are alone, He never leaves.” Such reassuring thoughts! Thank you for honouring me with your own beautiful heart thoughts. Blessings and love to you, fellow poet/writer/sister/friend! xoxo

  2. Beautiful! I’m preaching this weekend and the text is John 3:1-17. I can’t help but think about how amazing and extravagant God’s love is for all the world. So much THIS: “His death on the cross and glorious resurrection are the means whereby we become reunited to God.” I’m over in the 41 spot this week.

    • Tara, I’m so pleased you have found something in these words that speak to you. I was blown away by how original and creative you have been with the prompt this week, and your beautiful storytelling technique! You’ve set the bar high for the rest of us. xo 🙂

  3. Dear Joy,
    I love how you have tied in the theme of “abandon” throughout your poem! To think about our own abandoning of everything within us to Jesus, who abandoned His very life for us, and then to come to the realization that through it all, God has never once abandoned us! And so this phrase, most of all will be echoing in my heart today:
    “I want to become a prisoner of
    Hope, abandon myself on the altar
    of dependence, and rest in God’s
    all-sufficiency”
    Beautiful. Thank you for such encouraging words, my Dear Friend! May you be blessed with an abundance of that very HOPE! Love & Hugs! xo

    • Dear Bettie, while I am always grateful for your kind, encouraging words, I know not a word of this would have been written without Holy Spirit inspiration and equipping. I was particularly empty of thought, starved for words and poetically dry until… God showed up and the rest is His Story! Each post I write is a word for my own heart as well, and I am also taking note of the words you have highlighted. Praise God for the daily Hope we have in Jesus! Our part is to remember we are prisoners of His Hope, grateful recipients of His grace and awed partakers of His wonderful Love. Though many days pass in a blur and we get consumed by circumstance, I still long to notice the divine footprints in my midst and awaken more to wonder. So I am thankful to you for reminding me to stay alert for those things. Blessings and hugs to you, sweet friend! xo

  4. This is such a great post, Joy. I love that whatever abandonment we have experienced we can know God with us and have the assurance that he will never abandon us. And because Jesus abandoned himself for us, our response should be to abandon ourselves to him. I love how your poem captures that and I have downloaded your book. Thanks for sharing!

    • Lesley, I totally agree with you here: “I love that whatever abandonment we have experienced we can know God with us and have the assurance that he will never abandon us” and how it brings us peace and encouragement to feel secure with God. I’m sorry your own childhood was marred by dark shadows too. My hope and prayer is for God to speak His hope and healing into your heart. Thank you so much for downloading my book and letting me know you had done so! May it be a blessing to you as you read my story and sense the golden glimmers of God’s grace threading through life’s dark places. Bless you, my friend. xo

  5. Joy. I am agog (yep that is exactly it) and your poem. You tie truth up so beautifully and so completely. I am so grateful to the Lord for adopting me into his family and to Jesus who loves us so.
    “We’ve received a fresh heritage”
    Amen to this! And praise God.
    Visiting from FMF with the sliding in on Saturday crew. 🙂 #70
    God bless you.

    • Hello Kelly, it’s lovely to meet you! Thank you so much for your sweet comment. I definitely agree with your words here: ” I am so grateful to the Lord for adopting me into his family and to Jesus who loves us so.” Amen! I’m grateful you stopped by as a fellow member of the ” sliding in on Saturday crew” – love that description, by the way! Bless you, friend. 🙂

  6. Such a hope-filled post, Joy. No one has suffered abandonment as deeply as Jesus did for us. Thank you for helping me to reflect on this wonder today that because He was abandoned, we no longer will be abandoned. Even when it feels like it, He is still always with us! I love the verse and the significance of the two photos. Have a blessed, restful Sabbath! Hugs!

    • Thank you, Trudy. It’s humbling to have words to share that have offered you hope, because it’s always in such abundance in your posts. I’m so glad you were inspired to reflect on the wonder of Christ’s incarnation and total abandonment of Himself on the cross, all for Love’s sake. Our feelings may suggest we’ve been left to our own devices, but faith trusts we are always surrounded by God’s presence and have Holy Spirit help available to us whenever we need it. My Sabbath was busier than intended, though we did try to keep the birthday celebrations muted for my husband on the day itself! Our hope and prayer is for both of us to be well enough to go out for a meal with family this weekend. Love and hugs to you, dear friend! xo

      • So is your husband home from the hospital, Joy? I hope and pray you both will be well enough and strong enough to go out with your family this weekend! ❤️ 🌈 🌹

      • Yes, he is, Trudy. He was discharged from hospital on Friday evening, and optimistically thought he might be fit enough for a meal out that weekend! However, neither of us were up for such an exertion yet, though we hope and pray to be able to this weekend if possible. It’s amazing how well he is doing compared to this stage after the previous surgery, thanks in no small measure to faithful praying friends like you, and the goodness of our God! Bless you for asking. xo ❤

    • Andrew, it’s an honour to see you here, my friend! Thank you for your generous praise, to which I owe far more to God at work in me than anything else. It’s amazing what responses come when we sit and write for Him. I’m in awe of the words you have shared on your blog for FMF. They have a definite touch of God in their warmth and wisdom, with hope blazing bold in the face of pain and grace leaping out of every sentence. You offer us gems each week that are well worth mining. Bless you for being such an ardent chaser after grace in life’s hard places. 🙂 x

    • Michael, I find it hard not to write personally, but the intention, hope and prayer is always to help others to see themselves and their own situations within the words I share. Bless you for sharing this post with your readers. You are such an encouraging friend! 😊

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