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  • Writer's pictureAdrea Tilford


Whoa. Okay. So I asked God for a word.

I've never asked before. Or I've never really asked. This year I really asked.

And I heard the word surrender.

But seriously that's a word for pirates. Right?

I've been thinking about it for the last 48 hours. Yesterday, it came in my quiet time quite clearly. I had a conversation with someone on social media regarding words. She picked promise - which resonates with my podcast title, and blog title - but

Surrender? What have I been holding back?

- worries about children, husband, house and home

- worries about work

- this writing thing... oh this writing thing

- laying it ALL down like Ms. B did after my sermon, sprawling her fingertips toward the cross, her head bowed to the ground, giving it ALL

- writing a book, a real testimony of how I'm learning to trust God, even when it still feels easier to try to do it all myself or say I'm trusting but wondering if I actually am? When I look for those hearts and think that might be the ticket to my voice being heard, but really it's not on me for the when and how - just the saying of yes.

- being a voice for survivors of sexual abuse? being a public speaker at all? Taking my place in the circle of those I want to advocate for? Advocating for myself? Letting Jesus lead me to be the advocate only He can help me be?

- trusting to surrender when surrender triggers the past of being a person without power, without voice, without choice

What have I been holding back? Maybe a whole lot.

Last night, Jesus Calling December 31 spoke of my need to rely on Jesus for all my insufficiencies. Rely. Trust. Tied so tightly to the words on my heart for this book I continue to avoid writing.

Surrender - whispered as I wake this morning.

My EHS devotional: John 21: 17 - 19

The third time he said to him, "Simon son of John, do you love me?"

Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, "Do you love me?" He said, "Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.' Jesus said, "Feed my sheep. Very truly I tell you, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and led you where you do not want to go." Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God.

Then he said to him, "Follow me!"

Peter Scazzero begins the devotional with this message:, "Jesus had this different vision of maturity. It is the ability and the willingness to be led where you would rather not go. Immediately after Jesus commissions Peter to be a leader of his sheep, Jesus confronts Jesus with the hard truth that a servant-leader is a leader being led to the unknown, undesirable and painful places."


Before I started writing, I was looking up the word. I mean really Jesus? Can you tell me three times like you told Peter? I'll just make sure you do.

The first definition sure enough is piratey... "cease resistance to an enemy or opponent and submit to their authority." Hmmm.. have I been seeing Jesus as the enemy? The one who would ask me to do hard things? I often tell my children we are on the same team when they resist my efforts to help them do good things for themselves.

Turn off the screens... we are on the same team

Eat healthy food... we are on the same team

Hydrate... we are on the same team

Be kind to your sister... we are on the same team.

And yet they continue to have times where they see my as the enemy. The opponent. The one to resist.

So here I am on January 1, 2022 recognizing how much, how often I resist being on the same team as Christ... when it gets hard to do so.

Take care of yourself... we are on the same team

Slow down and get silent... we are on the same team

Let me love you... we are on the same team

Trust me... we are on the same team

Stand up for my love, for justice... we are on the same team

Last time (and maybe the only time) I was wholly surrendering I found myself thrown in the fire. He was with me. Absolutely all in with me. But the fire was still HOT and the refinement was painful. And I have been struggling to trust, to surrender my will to His. At least consistently.

I have been resisting. Today I being anew. I pick up the word He is offering.


(My search for surrender led me to finding the Novena of Surrender to Jesus @

Novena (9 days of prayer) of Surrender to Jesus. (Changing worry into peace).

Day 1: Why do you confuse yourselves by worrying? Leave the care of your affairs to Me and everything will be peaceful. I say to you in tr

that every act of true, blind, complete surrender to Me produces the effect that you desire and resolves all difficult situations.

O, Jesus, I surrender myself to You; take care of everything! (10 times)

Surrender brings peace and order to our souls.

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