Surrender can be scary but it becomes less scary and less risky when we know better the One we’re surrendering to. ~ Laura Story
The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want. — Psalm 23:1
Hi there, friends! Welcome to week two of the I Give Up Online Bible Study with our friend and one of our favorite worship leaders, Laura Story!
I love this description of faith: open-handed. It suggests trust, calm, peace, and implies reaching out to hold hands with Jesus, the Good Shepherd. I love that imagery.
When I feel afraid, or lost, or threatened, or alarmed, my hands automatically draw close to my body and fist up. Fear is tense, tightly-wound, frozen, locked up tight. It’s anxiety-producing, paranoia-driven, negative future-predicting, and it usually ends up in a bad case of hives. Right?
I heard a teacher once say “Where there’s fear, there’s no faith.” I disagree. I think that there’s a truckload of uncertainty, trepidation, anxiety, stress, sweat, and being intensely afraid that goes hand-in-hand with faith. At least that’s been the case for me. Maybe it has for you, too. Faith in our faithful King calls us to push forward with Him anyway.
It’s risky to surrender to God.
When we surrender we are without a doubt… out of control. But, it’s only our of our control. ~ Laura
It’s risky to open our hands and say God is capable. In the normal life experience of suffering, getting knocked down emotionally, physically, or spiritually, not knowing how a situation will turn out, rejection, unfair judgment, getting fired from a job, being mistreated, having all your plans explode into ruin… it’s hard to get on our knees and surrender to the God who is actually in control. And, who has a better plan than my plan.
We’re called to surrender to the only One capable and able to handle whatever our circumstance really is. We’re called to surrender our lives and our moments to God. ~ Laura
This year has stretched my faith further than I ever thought possible. Like, waaay past what I would have said was the breaking point. It’s made me question what I actually believe on a deep soul level. It’s caused me to ask as John the Baptist did, “Are you the One?” (Matthew 11:3, Luke 7:19) It’s forced me to seek God and His Word so I could be reminded of His true character.
The question is “Who is this God to whom we’re called to surrender? What’s He really like? And can I trust Him?” ~ Laura
Because, really, that’s what it comes down to…
Can I trust the One I’ve always trusted? Is He still the One for me?
The Scriptures are filled with a thousand descriptions of God from Creator of the universe to Sovereign over all time, holy, omnipotent, mighty, Father, Healer, Protector, Provider, King, my Rock… ~ Laura
And my answer is yes. No matter what. I choose to trust Him… with open-hands.
How about you?
This week in your study:
- Watch the video for session two on our study home page or live with other participants … Take notes in your study guide on pages 29-32.
- Go through the study questions with your group or on your own on pages 32-36.
- Read I Give Up, Chapters 13-6.
- Grab your Bible and enjoy your personal study this week on pages 37-43.
- Watch parties on Mondays at 8pm CST.
- Join the conversations about the study and get to know fellow participants in the private Facebook group!
Scripture this Week
Prayer for the Week
Lord, You are our shepherd. We shall not want. You provide the green pastures; You create the quiet waters; You are the refresher of our souls. You guide us even in the valley of the shadow of death. You lay out a lavish feast for us while our enemies watch. You anoint us and prepare us. Our daily bodyguards are goodness and mercy. And someday soon, we will be in Your presence forever. We adore You, Jesus. Amen,