Is Surrender a Possible Way?

Surrendering

I woke up this morning worrying. Worrying about some things I can not or should not do anything about at the moment. It must wait.

This wait can also be a good thing. Since by waiting my feelings may get some necessary time to calm down. Then I can get some time to do some real thinking if needed, when I am more rested and not stressed out.

This wait can also be a chance to practice trust and surrender. Sometimes humans, at least I can speak for myself, try to control everything. Every thing must be this way or that way, yes, every thing needs to be perfect.

For myself, growing up with not enough acceptance for anger and frustration, it can still be difficult to handle feelings that come up. The feelings are often very strong. I guess I have not been used to being able to express negative feelings, so this is still difficult at times, being afraid that it won’t be acceptable, and that I will be rejected.

Deep inside, at times hidden for no one to see, sometimes even hidden to ourselves, we are feeling insecure and have this need to be embraced and completely accepted for who we are.

Not being able to express the full range of my emotions and feelings when I were younger has interfered with my ability to feel completely secure today, and has also made me, both consciously and uncounciusly, afraid of making mistakes.

Still, in the midst of all worry and fear of making or being responsible for mistakes, I feel a great energy for living and doing good. Not the perfect kind of good, but good, as in being someone to be trusted, a someone with hopefully some wisdom and at least enough empathy to be of some help to others. Nouwen’s expression that we can be “wounded healers” resonates with me.

I mentioned the wait I give myself when worrying tries to take over. The wait I give myself when I know worrying is of no use and know as the holy book says that worrying can not add any length to my life (Matthew 6:27). Much worrying does not benefit us at all. But the wait can be beneficial.

The wait can be a chance to surrender. A chance to say to God “hey, you know everything, you know my heart, you know the good stuff and the bad stuff, yes you know everything…but now I give it all to you!”. This simple prayer can be the beginning of a quite time of surrender. Imagine surrendering everything to the Creator of the Universe!?

I know this is so, so much easier said than done. Trust me, I do know! But that does not make it less true or even less possible. I believe in the practice of surrender. And being silent before the Great Divine. I believe in Christ within us, that can become our lives, so that we may live through him. I believe in the acceptance of all emotions and feelings, but also in the denial and surrender of the ego, and in the trust in the Christ within. I can, and you can, surrender and give everything to the One that gave us life. I mean, surrender every thing!

I remember reading a book (by the way I have not been sponsored to say this) called The Surrender Experiment by Michael A. Singer. Here he tells a story of surrendering to life, I would say Life with a capital L. He is not sugarcoating life, but he is telling an honest story about his company and later also the development of a spiritual center. And he is telling of difficulties he met, even a time spent in court. Still, through all this, he practiced surrender. A surrender to life.

I believe in the wait and the surrender. I believe in the silence and in the trust. I believe we can be still, and know, truly know there is a God (Psalm 46:10). A God that knows our heart and also our sin and failures. Surrender does not mean that you are excempt from taking action or doing what you can do. But surrender is a place to start and restart when life feels, really feels, overwhelming.

So, I believe there can be trust and encouragment in sitting down or going for a walk, crying out, and then maybe also in the divine silence you may be, though maybe weakly, able to surrender to the One that cares for you, for all, the Giver of Life.

Feel free to comment!

PS! Remember surrendering to a God that to you may seem invisible can be really difficult. We need to be around people and also nature, that point to and practice this love, and in who and which also God lives (the panentheistic not pantheistic worldview). So also remember to reach out to someone you can trust when you are experiencing difficulties and worry. And also reach out to those you may think are going through hardship. We “are” Christ in this world.

Knowing

Norwegian winter landscape

I believe in a knowing that you can experience more and more by listening to the small voice within and by walking the path set before you. This is most likely a path that at times will bring confusion and despair, but also hope, love and grace.

There are ways for you to grow from being governed by your ego to being more and more guided, led and held by this inner knowing. The poet Rilke once wrote or said “the only journey is the journey within”. In a way he is right, but in another way he is also wrong, that is if his words are taken too literally. I truly believe in the jorney within as a journey we are called to take, especially in the afternoon of life. Richard Rohr writes about the first and second half of life in his wise book “Falling Upward”. When I say that understood too literally the words from Rilke can be “wrong”, I mean that there is always a need for balance. We need to look both outside and inside.

For me going cross-country skiing or hiking in the mountains are great ways to observe beautiful landscapes and God’s magnificent creation outside myself. At the same time these seemingly outside-yourself-experiences are also inner experiences. The beauty that I see resonates with something deep within me. What I see outside and around me becomes something that connects with and gives birth to a knowing within me. So, the journey within is in a way the most important, but we also need to contemplate the beauty outside to experience a connection to our inner life and to spirit.

It is true what Augustin said “my soul is restless until it finds its rest in you”. As we grow up spiritually and connect with God’s spirit and our deepest self within we find a knowing and also a rest.

All of us have different life stories. Some have experienced very close and loving relationsships when they were children and just beginners on their journeys. Others have experienced more troublesome childhoods, loneliness and a lack of true love and embrace. All of us have our own journeys to take. For some it may take many years to grow into this deeper knowing. Some also have to go through therapy to get there.

No matter what, I believe in this deeper knowing which becomes an intuitive knowledge of eternal truths and a knowing of true love. The knowing you experience makes dogmas less important and even less true, because truths that we know within are often simple and universal. The first and most universal truth I think, is that the universe is filled with love. We as well as the whole universe are created out of love. We are created and also placed in this world by a Love.

What about all the pain and suffering you say? Where is this love that you are talking about? For myself, life has noe been an easy walk either. All I can say today, I see you. Yes, there is great suffering and pain in this world. Yes, there is great pain and loneliness in our and other people’s lives. Still I believe that the deeper knowing we can experience is a knowing that tells us about a Love, a Love greater than anything else.

Let us just leave it at that today. Know that you are loved by Love, and knowledge of this Love can also become part of your inner knowing!

Feel free to comment!