August 15

Surrender:   Part III

      Acceptance

      One of the road blocks to surrendering fully to God is resentment.  If you have certain expectations about how others should treat you, or about how an event should play out in your life, there’s a good chance you will face resentment.

      Acceptance is the road to peace – letting go of resentment.  Acceptance is very different from resignation.  When you resign yourself to a certain fate, your present circumstances, you open the door to resentment because you have failed to accept responsibility.  Acceptance, on the other hand, is not some passive-aggressive way of dealing with failure and disappointment.  Acceptance means you are prepared to examine your part in all of it, and accept your responsibility for where you find yourself.  It allows you to be ‘okay’ with your present set of circumstances

 Acceptance opens a door to the achievement of what you truly desire.

Trust

      Addicts know, all too well, the limitations that surround their human experience.  That’s why they turned to their ‘drug’ in the first place!  When insecurity is combined with powerlessness, shame and addiction is born and grows into an evil and idolatrous force that feeds their basic need for control.

      Trust is letting go of our limitations.  It’s recognizing that we are powerless over certain things, even though we may have lived our lives as if we were fully in charge.  Instead of trying to teach God what we need, we allow God to teach us… this is the essence of ‘letting go and letting God.’  Our limitations can only be overcome when we trust our Higher Power with the things we cannot change.

      The ability to hand over our will and our lives reveals our trust in the process; and our trust in the process will allow us to relinquish cynicism.  The attitude “Life’s a bitch, and then you die” is somehow transformed into “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!”

Trust allows you to jump the hurdles that come between you and your truest desires.

       Surrender results in a relationship with your Higher Power that is based on love.  And a loving relationship will demand action because love is a verb.  You don’t just feel love, you do it!  Surrender is not passive, but active:  Courage, acceptance and trust all require action on our part. 

      I was raised in a very conservative, religious family.  I learned to sing “Amazing Grace” and listened to hundreds of sermons on “Salvation by Grace.”  But a lot of religious people don’t understand grace.  And I was one of them.  I understood very little when it came to my own personal experience of God’s grace. 

      I accepted a kind of ‘cheap grace’ that kept me safe (so I thought) from the flames of Hell, but did little to transform my life.  Even though salvation comes by grace, it is also through faith.  In other words, there is a great deal of effort involved in working out your own salvation.  This brings us to the fourth principle where you begin to work at getting what you truly desire.