When a demand to surrender is made it usually means there is a struggle of some sort in progress. I’m not a soldier or a member of military forces, but I was certainly in a war! My mind (will) was the place where my battles took place except I got to make the ultimate decision if I won or lost. Often, a person’s first inclination may be to fight during a struggle. However, this particular encounter required a different kind of reply: total, unconditional abandonment of one’s will to the Father.
Before I could respond with an action, I was introduced to The 40-Day Surrender Fast: The Guide for Releasing Your Plan, Renewing Your Mind, and Restoring Your Life by Dr. Celeste Owens.
I Surrender Again Completely
The concept of a “Surrender Fast” immediately captivated me. It wasn’t only about abstaining from food or drink for a designated period of time, it was about abstaining from what gives us the most trouble: being us.
Before I began, there was a section called “Pre-Fast Preparation.” You know when you are getting ready to go somewhere? Well, the pre-fast is the get ready before you go! This time is dedicated as a time of exploration, to be still and listen to God. Sometimes we get so busy with the noise of day to day activity that it becomes difficult to find the quiet place.
When Elijah was on the run from Jezebel, he had an encounter with God. However, God did not speak to him in the way he expected. As he waited for God’s presence to manifest, there was a mighty wind that came, an earthquake and a fire. God did not speak to the prophet in the midst of any of those occurrences. After those events came a peaceful voice that was low in volume. Often, that is how God chooses to speak to us too, in a quiet place without distraction (1 Kings 19:11-13).
I found that like the prophet, I claimed I was listening but I hadn’t heard a thing. I needed to surrender again. It was time to hear what God was saying to me, about me. Finally, I was listening for the still, small voice.
What The 40 Day Surrender Fast Taught Me about Giving Up
Imagine there is someone asking you for a Band-Aid to protect a wound while it heals. They come back to you several times for more Band-Aids because they have injured themselves in the same spot. It would be reasonable to wonder what is causing that person to receive injury in the same locality over and over again.
The 40 Day Surrender Fast takes you on a guided tour and arrives at a place for personal reflection each day. Each chapter (day) leads you to arrive at the root and core causing your symptoms or causing you to have the same injury.
I started the fast thinking I needed to give up procrastination–that was merely my symptom. Fear of rejection and lack of faith was the cause of my symptom.
I learned the symptom was the byproduct of my experiences. By surrendering my will, I was able to have an honest dialogue about me. I was now able to effectively root out the cause and prevent further injury to my faith in God. The 40 Day Surrender Fast is all about developing discipline to listen to the voice of God and following through with corrective action.
Surrender for Life!
Each time I revisit the text, it leads me to navigate another journey: for self-exploration and revelation of God’s plans for my life. The words memorialized to paper serve to infuse your spirit with determination to not only do well but to become your best.
The 40 Day Surrender Fast by Dr. Celeste Owens is the game changer you need if you want to change your life for the rest of your life!
See also: Psalm 91:1-2