Gethsamene: the Cost of Surrendering

it has not been a happy new year for me. the last few weeks of december 2016 until now have been the ugliest moment in my life. this blog post is literally bleeding from my heart.

in september 2016, i began to share on my facebook profile what god was instructing me on, for the year 2017. it was a prophetic instruction to guide and direct my family in the new year. the instruction was simple: surrender. but as god began to unveil the strategies behind this instruction, i realized that 2017 was a year that would cost me more than i am willing to pay.

one of the things god started teaching me about surrender is through the greek root word “deditio” which means “cease to exist”. In 2017, God is instructing me and my family to cease to exist. i spent the last quarter of 2016 learning from god the implications of this instruction, and i didn’t like what i was finding. even though there was a promise of reward, the cost of surrendering was going to be ugly.

in his book, absolute surrender, andrew murray explains that the condition in which god will fully bless the christian is in a state of absolute surrender. this is both an expectation, and demand of god, from those called of him. i am learning that the cost of surrendering is the price jesus paid in the garden of gethsamene.

the bible records how deeply distressed and discouraged jesus was in gethsamene, how he longed for human comfort and company, and how he desperately prayed against the ordeal of crucifixion. one of the gospel writers even records that his sweat was like drops of blood.

i get it.

no, i have not gone through anything has devious as what jesus went through. but i am learning that what happened to jesus in the garden of gethsamene was more than the fear of death. it was the “betrayal” of the jesus by god; it was the “rejection” of jesus by god; it was the “limitation” of immortality by mortality. i am learning that in gethsamene, jesus was enduring a spiritual separation from an intimate fellowship with the father; i am learning that in gethsamene, jesus was wondering how love could abandon him; i am learning that in that desperate moment jesus was questioning every motive of the father in this need to save mankind by killing divinity.

i am also learning that the cost of surrendering did not begin in gethsamene. it began on mount horeb when abraham laid isaac on the alter. for the first time, i am realizing why god didnt play with abe. in deed, there is no greater love that for a man to lay down his life for his friend. i think that it would have been easier for abraham to lay down his life for god; but asking abraham to sacrifice the very longing of his heart, the elusive son that had finally been granted him; to let go of that one thing you have passionately desired and believed god for.

in recent times, i have felt like there was a literal hole in my heart because god was asking me to surrender my marriage, the one thing that i am fiercely possessive and protective of. for the first time in my marriage i felt helpless to defend our unity; i felt the weight of sustained attack to my marriage; i felt the pain of seeming rejection from the one person that i would lay down my life for; i felt the despair of betrayal from the one person that should not abandon me; i felt the desperation of loosing control of the one thing that i should have absolute control over.

i am learning that death is the beginning of life. i am learning that there is a call of god that demands nothing less that total death. i am learning that it is only on the other side of shedding of human ability that divine ability is gloriously expressed.

i understand that on the other side of the cross was a resurrected christ unlimited by earthly constraints. i am learning that, for me in 2017, in this season of surrender, i will have to pay the price of gethsamene. over and over again.

I am still learning.