Surrender 101

We were busy this weekend at the correctional facility where I work. We often do our blood sugar testing with diabetics before they eat in the morning, like around 6:00-6:30 in the morning. This weekend was a different agenda as we had to make some changes with some of our duties. The morning and evening medication nurses's schedule were changed from a 12-hour shift to an 8-hour shift. Along with that, all shifts are involved in sharing "who will do what now" with our duties. So, to make it short, night shift nurses are to give "self-carry medications" [those medications that are allowed for the inmates to keep on their own] previously done by the morning nurses.

So, together with the diabetics, those inmates whose refills were due, were called to come down to the clinic. And it was chaotic indeed! With the bodies slowly filling the small waiting area, one inmate came to my face and in a rude tone of voice, not even asked but sort of demanded, "Give me some toilet paper!". If I wasn't a Christian and if I had not allowed the Lord Jesus to mold me, that inmate might have heard profanities from me and it could even get worse, I could have put her in discipline for being disrespectful to staff.

While I responded to her in a respectful but firm voice, "Please have a seat and you have to wait for your turn when you are called. Do not come to me with that attitude!" So, she had no choice but obeyed. In the back of my mind, that's what we all must do, "surrender"....And this place would be a better place to live in.

The word "surrender" from the dictionary means "to yield to one's possession or power, to give oneself up". It sounds like we are big losers when we do so. But if Jesus' "Surrender 101" classes are offered, we are actually not losers but big time winners, more worth than winning a big lottery jackpot!

When we give in and surrender to Jesus Christ, our lives are transformed in big ways we can't even imagine. Everything happens because of God's grace, not of our own strength. When we yield to Jesus, by accepting Him in our hearts, and making Him our Lord in everything, there is peace, there is true joy despite the trials, and we know that the Holy Spirit will start His work in us by making us grow more like Jesus in our character.

2 Corinthians 3:18 - "All of us have had that veil removed so that we can be mirrors that brightly reflect the glory of the Lord. And as the Spirit of the Lord works within us, we become more and more like Him and reflect His glory even more."

Ephesians 4:15- "We will hold to the truth in love, becoming more and more in every way like Christ, Who is the head of His body, the church."

Philippians 1:6 -"I am sure that God, Who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on that day when Christ Jesus comes back again."

Luke 9:23 - Jesus said to the crowd, "If any of you wants to be my follower, you must put aside your selfish ambition, shoulder your cross daily, and follow Me."
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The Attacker (5/15/09)

The sun was just peeking from the Eastern skies. Ephesians 6:12 [37 kb]

Out in the prison’s yard, some huge Sheriff’s buses were illuminated by the soft glow coming from the lights all over from the tall lamp posts. Their engines were turned on, warming up, before the buses would take the inmates to the different courts where they would have their trials.

Orange-uniformed men were lined up in pairs, joined together with handcuffs and chained, forming a long line. They already had their breakfast and had their morning medications prior to going to courts. Some were fidgeting, as they waited to board those buses.

All of a sudden, all hell broke loose! Two men were engaged in a fight, using weapons they made secretly for a while. Deputies called for help on the radio, both for custody back-up and medical staff, as well.

When the air was cleared and the other inmates were secured, one man was down on the floor. He sustained multiple gashes but two of them were deep. One cut was vertically etched from his left ear going down to the jaw line. The other dangerous cut was horizontal on his left neck, close to the jugular vein. Pool of blood dripped all over the floor. Holding his bleeding neck, he was pointing at the other inmate few feet away, being guarded by the other deputies.

The other man being accused was not hurt. There were no lacerations nor any other signs of trauma. He was obviously very agitated as he was being questioned by those deputies, while the medical staff started treating the other man on the floor. They cleaned the wounds and controlled the bleeding. That man was sent to the nearby hospital.

When the investigation was finalized, it turned out to be that the “downed man who was accusing the other inmate” was the attacker and the other one who didn’t have injury was the one attacked. The deputies found out that it was the second attempt to attack the unhurt man. Both attacks on him failed. He was well-prepared after the first attempt on him, that when the second attempt was done, he was able to defend himself and ended up injuring his attacker severely.

[Source: NLT Bible ]:

We also have an “accuser of the brethren.” Satan and his army of demons are the enemies of God and of everything good.

“Because God’s children are human beings – made of flesh and blood – Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death.” –Hebrews 2:14

Because of what Jesus had done [dying on the cross], we, who live in constant fear of death shouldn’t be afraid anymore. Jesus had freed us from that fear so we can live for Him. When we belong to God, we know that death is only the portal that leads into “eternal life”. [“Thank You Lord!].

Paul warned us, too that we also battle against the evil forces of Satan, who is a vicious fighter. But to be able to withstand their attacks, we must depend on God’s strength and use every piece of His armor. We face an army whose goal is to defeat Christ’s church. When we believe in Christ, they become our enemies. They will try any device to turn us away from the Lord.

Fear not! For God has provided His supernatural power to defeat Satan and his army, through His Holy Spirit within us. So, arm yourselves with God’s armor.

Let us be strong in the Lord's mighty power. Let's put on His whole armor to resist the enemy's attacks: put on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that we are well-prepared. We will need faith in every battle as our shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed by Satan and his army. Let us put on salvation as our helmet, not forgetting the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Let's pray at all times, on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. We must stay alert and be persistent in our prayers for all Christians everywhere. [Ephesians 6:10-18].