I recently started meeting with some guys to read through Gordon Dalbey’s book, Fight Like a Man. In the first chapter, “First, We Surrender” the author talks about the difference in surrender and obedience. Because of many painful experiences throughout my childhood I never trusted my father. This got projected onto my relationship with God the Father. Because I hadn’t learned trust I could not surrender to God. I submitted to my father because of his harsh punishment but I did not trust him. To trust the Father I had to surrender to him my pain from my dad’s abuse and abandonment of me.

Dalbey writes, “Exhorting men first to “submit to God” and “obey God’s Word” ignores the wound that makes them reject God in the first place.” Unfortunately I did this for years before realizing I had become a Pharisee. I was never honest about my needs, weaknesses, and limitations. I placed “heavy loads” upon myself and others. Jesus on the other hand tells us” “For the yoke I will give you is easy, and the load I will put on you is light”(Matthew 11:30). The man who wants to pursue his destiny must “surrender to Jesus” his painful longing for a trustworthy father.

That is when my healing began when I responded to the draw of the Holy Spirit to begin to grieve the pain within. I sobbed for an hour and a half. Fortunately there were three faithful prayer ministers who stayed with me to continue to lead me to the cross that night. Before this event I usually fled that draw of the Spirit because I didn’t want to look foolish in front of others. That is just good old fashion pride that kept me from surrendering to Jesus.

Tragically, most men cling to their own strength and self-sufficiency rather than be exposed as a sinner or one who has been sinned against.

I leave you with the Apostle Paul’s words: “Sin must no longer rule in your mortal bodies, so that you obey the desires of your natural self. Nor must you surrender any part of yourselves to sin to be used for wicked purposes. Instead, give yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life, and surrender your whole being to him to be used for righteous purposes.

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