I'm sitting here typing with red and blue painted nails and sporting my Old Navy flag tee (which is actually from 2011, but oh well;-) and listening to random fireworks going off somewhere nearby our new neighborhood. As I checked FB throughout the day, I found my newsfeed full of updates regarding the 4th of July, many of them including a note of gratitude for the freedom so many have fought for us to have. And while the majority of my FB friends were posting of various family gatherings and fireworks shows, I was posting of updates of our unpacking process in our new home. Oddly enough, when I opened up my journal today, it fell upon an entry I penned a few weeks back that had to do with both of those topics: freedom, and packing...
I have always been SO bad about over-packing.
What if THIS happens, and I need THAT...
I want to be prepared for every situation that could possibly be thrown my way. I want to feel in control. Instead, most of the time I just end up feeling annoyed though--annoyed by the mound of stuff I'm having to lug around and dig through. My baggage weighs me down, slows me down, and it can even bring me down. (I'll never forget a trip we made to Chicago with the staff and wives at a church we served in. We were all headed up or down on the escalator, and Steve and his bags couldn't keep up, so instead, they went down, and they took Steve with them!)
It's safe to say I've experienced some overpacking in my personal life, too. You try to take control of every little detail, but many times, depsite all of the preparation, the unexpected and unwanted still happens. So what do you do when you've done everything in your power to control, only to discover that you still really aren't in control?
|Our old home--all packed up...|
We so often think of surrender as a form of imprisonment, but it's really the exact opposite--it's freedom.
One of my favorite definitions of surrender is this: To accept defeat.
And I think that's why we don't like it--because it makes us feel weak. But in reality, that's exactly what we are. I mean, after carrying around all of that stuff, aren't we tired? Our pride tells us, Don't give up; you can do it! But we only grow weaker as we continually realize that we can't do it...and thank the Lord, we don't have to! In reality, defeat isn't weakness at all; it's recognizing strength in Christ. It's FREEDOM! And what's so amazing and unique to admitting our defeat and surrendering to Jesus is that we are able to open up the floodgates of freedom to our souls.
John 8:36 says this:
If the Son has set you free, you will be free indeed.
The only way we can ever be free from our bondage is by laying it down. Surrender to Jesus is where freedom is truly found, and for an over-packer like me, oh how thankful I am of that freedom!
(Well, OK, and maybe I will hang on to some lightweight Vera Bradley luggage for fashion's sake ;-)