Early in his book Sabbatical Journey, Henri Nouwen shares a prayer by Charles de Foucauld that he began his year of sabbatical with. The prayer says,
Father, I abandon myself into Your hands.
Do with me whatever You will.
Whatever You may do, I thank You.
I am ready for all, I accept all.
Let only Your will be done in me,
And in all Your creatures.
Into Your hands I commend my spirit.
I offer it to You with all the love that is in my heart.
For I love You, Lord, and so want to give myself,
To surrender myself into Your hands.
Without reserve and with boundless confidence,
For You are my Father.
This past weekend, Russ and I had the opportunity to attend a conference called Discovery. A couple of dear friends had been through this training and highly recommended the training to us. We had been hearing from them for awhile about this training and had managed to keep them at bay for awhile, but they finally showed all their cards and said they had scholarships for our tuition and most of the other expenses we would incur during the weekend. In addition, Russ already had the weekend off from work and Damaris was already planning to spend the weekend with a friend, so we had no reason to say no anymore. I can honestly say that the training was God ordained and something I definitely needed in order to surrender myself completely to Him.
During this training, I was given the opportunity to surrender several situations and emotions to God. My whole heart for as long as I can remember has been consumed by hate, anger, and unforgiveness. I will not go into all the specifics because I could write not just hundreds or thousands, but ten-thousands of words and still not be able to express all that I have been through. I will say that there were three major issues I dealt with. By the end of the weekend, I was able to forgive two men in my life who had hurt me and I was able to release to God a situation that I had no control over but that I kept taking back from Him no matter how many times I thought I had worked through the situation. I have been stuck at a place in my life when I was six years old. I had never been able to move beyond that and this had caused emotional disease in every single relationship I have had since.
I know that I just came from a mountaintop experience and that I cannot expect remain there permanently. However, I do know that the experience of complete and total surrender I experienced when I released the anger, hate, and unforgiveness have now opened me up to be able to deal with my relationships with Russ and Damaris. If I did not experience that total surrender, I would have kept continuing to poison those two most important of earthly relationships. God has given me complete and total freedom from my past and I am thrilled beyond words to be able to say with no fear or trepidation that I am a graceful and peaceful woman. Praise God for finally bringing me to this place of surrender!
If you're interested in more details about this conference, let me know. I'm hoping to return for D!! in January (although most of my class will be attending in November, but my schedule just isn't allowing for this). I would highly recommend this training to anyone who needs to let go. The training is held almost monthly in Dallas and Austin. Let me know if I can help you connect with this amazing opportunity!