Surrendering Isn’t the Same as Giving Up

by Megan Evans, COMPEL Training Member June 9, 2022
“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:6-7 (NIV)

With no solution to my problem in sight, I uttered the frustrated phrase “I give up!”

Cradling my head in my hands, I sank into a chair at my kitchen table. Resting there on my elbows, I declared defeat. I didn’t really want to quit, but it seemed my options had run out.

I’m not sure how many times in my life I’ve said “I give up,” but it’s been plenty. I’m guessing you’ve said it, too.

Still, one thing is certain for every follower of Christ: Just because we feel defeated doesn’t mean we are left for dead. Quite the opposite! From the depths of our heart, a little signal pings and fires a rescue flare called hope. That’s the difference between us and the world. Our hope is never lost.

In my kitchen that day, hope began to bubble to the surface. Instead of giving up, I found my lips praying a different set of words: Jesus, I surrender.

Nobody likes to raise a white flag. We’ve been taught that more is better, and failure is not an option. The world tells us, “You can do it all!” In reality, we can’t, nor do we need to. But we try. We overextend our time, overextend our abilities and overextend our resources. Yet all of this overreaching just leaves us gripping the end of our rope.

I’ve learned that in these moments swelling with frustration, we have a choice. We can choose to sit with the enemy in defeat or surrender to the Lord in victory. As we surrender to the Lord, our giving up is replaced by His lifting up, as our key verse says:

“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5:6-7).

As we raise our white flag and cry out to Jesus, He rescues us from the depths. When we humble ourselves before the Lord, we begin to see His mighty hand at work. While we rest safely under God’s care, He will lift us up in due time … and His timing is always perfect.

Surrendering isn’t the same thing as giving up — not when God is involved. Submitting to God means humbly placing ourselves at His feet. Then we give up our desire for control and our pride. Under the care of God’s mighty hand, we release the need to know when, why and how. Faith finds us resting in His power, peace and provision. This different surrender is a dying of self, and in it we begin to walk in fresh, new life with Christ.

Are details of this day causing your head to droop? Help is on the way. Hope is bubbling to the surface even now. When we find ourselves at the end of our rope, let’s instead cast our anxiety on the Lord. Nestle under the protection of God’s mighty hand because He cares for you. Rest there.

Don’t give up in defeat today; surrender to the Lord.

Dear Lord, You are my steadfast hope and rescue. Thank You for lifting me out of my frustration and into the tender care of Your mighty hand. I surrender all worry and anxiety of this day to You, Jesus, and rest in Your victory. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


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Psalm 33:20, “We wait in hope for the LORD; he is our help and our shield.” (NIV)

Isaiah 40:30-31, “Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” (NIV)

What frustration have you experienced lately that you need to surrender to the Lord?

Recall a time when you stood in victory with Christ over an impossible situation. How can this remind you once again to cast your cares and anxiety on the Lord? Share with us in the comments!

© 2022 by Megan Evans. All rights reserved.

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