Practical Surrender

I met a man in Rwanda, a prison chaplain named Thomas.  Thomas serves in a prison that houses some of the perpetrators from the Genocide of 1994.  Many of the prison chaplains in Rwanda serve some of the very people who murdered members of their own families.  These men and women are the truest kind of heroes.

Thomas told a story of when he was a cattle farmer.  His family owned many cows and felt blessed by God to be so fortunate.  One particular year they had many calves.  But soon after some of the calves were born, they were slaughtered in the night.  Thomas knew the killer was a witch doctor that lived in his village, so he approached this man to confront him.  Denying the charges, the witch doctor reported Thomas to the authorities for falsely accusing him (a crime in his country).  Thomas was asked to appear before a judge at the end of the week, so he fled to the woods to pray for three days.  Repeatedly, Thomas cried out to God for justice and defense.  He asked God to make this all go away.  He owned his fear and offered it to the Lord.  He owned his anger and offered it to the Lord.  Finally, Thomas said that he offered the outcome, whatever it may be, to the Lord. 

He came out of the woods on the third day, prepared for anything to happen, to a large crowd gathering near his fields.  People began to call to him, telling him to come quickly to see.  There, in the middle of the field, stood the witch doctor, completely naked, with his arm stuck inside the cow’s womb.  Unable to remove his arm, the witch doctor was forced to follow the cow around all night long until he was discovered that morning.  The witch doctor had been trying to harm another cow before it could be born.  God vindicated Thomas as the whole village saw the witch doctor’s guilt.  Thomas humbled himself and pointed to God.  God took care of the rest.

Can you trust God with the outcome?  Can you choose a one-down position with God, allowing Him to orchestrate and weave together the outcome of His choosing?  Can I?  Are we willing to wrestle, like Thomas, until we have given all the consequences to our Savior?  Some things require three days to work through.  Some things require twelve years.  No matter how long, God is asking us to wrestle through ourselves until we find the place of willing humility.  God does not want token respect, but sincere humbleness.  When surrender looks like this, there is no limit to what He will do in response.