Archive for March 29th, 2023


Written by Ben Van Arragon, a contemporary pastor.

Although I’ve never needed this advice, I read recently that one of the best ways to avoid a kidnapping is to fight back and make a lot of noise, in order to make it as difficult as possible to be taken. In short: don’t surrender. However, God told the inhabitants of Jerusalem to do the opposite. The Babylonian army had besieged the city. Jeremiah said the last thing Zedekiah and his people expected to hear: “If you will surrender to the officials of the king of Babylon, then your life shall be spared, and this city shall not be burned with fire” (v. 17). God insisted that the exile to Babylon was his plan. His people’s only hope for salvation was surrender, because in surrendering to Babylon, they were surrendering to God. Surrender is the only right response to God’s will, following the commands of the Bible, in every situation keeping in mind that we belong to God, trusting that his saving purposes are in effect even when life is hard. Quoting a proverb, James wrote, “‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.’ Submit yourselves therefore to God” (James 4:6-7). Surrendering to God does not guarantee that everything will go smoothly. But it does grant the peace of knowing that our lives are unfolding according to his perfect will. The most secure life is a life of surrender to the God who saves.


Today’s prayer is from the United Church of Christ Book of Worship.

God, who is more than we can ever comprehend, help us to seek you, and you alone. Help us to stand before all that we could do and seek what you would do and do that. Lift from us our need to achieve all that we can be and instead, surrender to what you can be in us. Give us ways to refrain from the busyness that will put us on edge and off center, give us today your peace. Amen.

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