The Best Way to Welcome the Day: Surrender

I chuckle as the first thing out of Rachel’s mouth is “no.” My no-girl, expressing her desire to remain in bed (I think she may also be teasing me a bit.)

“Not no, but yes!” I tell her as I tickle her awake.


Not no, but yes!

That’s how we should be starting our day—by saying yes to God.

Whatever You want Lord. Whatever You have in mind.

We need to have the heart of Samuel (1 Samuel 3). 

Several times in the course of a night, Samuel heard someone calling his name. Each time he went to Eli, thinking he needed him. But Eli assured him he hadn’t summoned him.

The third time Samuel sought out Eli, the wise old prophet understood that the Lord was calling Samuel. The next time the Lord called, Samuel answered, 

“Speak, Lord, for Your servant is listening.”

What an example for each of us children of God! 

Each day should begin with, “Speak, Lord! I am listening. This day is Yours. What would You have me do?”

Surrender the Dreaded To-Do List

Instead too often I wake with my to-do list on my mind and rolling off my tongue. I recite my list to Him and ask for His blessing on it. 

As if I really know what’s best for me! 

“Many plans are in a man’s heart, but the Lord’s decree will prevail.” Proverbs 19:21

How much freer to begin with surrender. To welcome the Lord to direct our paths. To acknowledge His omniscience.

How much better is a day given to the Lord than one clenched in our fists of control!  

How much better is a day given to the Lord than one clenched in our fists of control! Click To Tweet

Releasing Our Day

Releasing each day to the Lord is not complicated, but it isn’t easy either. It’s in our human nature to want control. Creating a plan for the day to come is simply an extension of that.  

Wanting a plan itself is not bad; it’s how tightly we hold onto that plan that can be a problem. 

A plan is good; expecting your plan to be THE plan is not.

A plan is good; expecting your plan to be THE plan is not. Click To Tweet

When we establish a day’s to-do list and merely ask God to bless it as is, we relegate Him to a “yes-God” and come dangerously close to placing ourselves on the same level as God.

We are implying we know as much about what our day will hold as God does and can respond with equal wisdom and insight.  

So instead of grasping tightly to your morning plan, hold it loosely. Open your hand, unclench. Give this day to the Lord. Let Him plan your agenda.

Say yes to whatever He feels is best for your day. Go ahead, say it now. Say, “YES.” Right out loud like (okay, whisper if others are still sleeping). Yes, Lord! 

And then walk in the beauty and purpose of how His plan plays out. 

Lord, each day let me say yes to You. Each morning, let Your will be what I embrace. Help me hold my plan loosely. To offer it to You in surrender and take on the tasks You have for me. Let Your love be evident in my life for all to see, and let my days be focused on You. In Jesus name. Amen! 

“I know, O Lord, that the way of man is not in himself, that it is not in man who walks to direct his steps.” Jeremiah 10:23

Reflections: Do you awake with a plan or develop one as your day unfolds? What difference might it make if you surrender your day to God to plan? 

I’m excited to continue recording blessings this year. Since beginning over 3 years ago, I’ve counted nearly 4,000 gifts in Ann Voskamp’s Joy Dare! What a blessing! So here we go in 2015: #3954–3974, read my entire list by clicking here.

  • *Successful first day of VBS (photo is of David taking out Goliath); *Rachel insisting she put her jammies on herself: it’s a rare occurrence, but I’ll take it when I get it!; *Bats zipping around against a moon-lit sky
  • A long but satisfying day: Another great day at ‪#‎VBS‬ learning about the wisdom God imparts to us; Vegie garden completely planted; Back rub from my girl
  • *A third awesome day of ‪#‎VBS‬ learning about how Jesus saves: added bonus, a spontaneous hug from a little VBSer (1st picture is day 2, Deborah under the Palm tree imparting God’s wisdom, 2nd picture = day 3: yes sing it out, What a Mighty God We Serve!); *Extra 3 nights with Zach home; *Danny landed safely in the States (can’t wait to see him Friday night!)
  • A fantastic 4th day of ‪#‎VBS‬ exploring how Jesus gives us faith; Obtaining a chauffeur as Joey got his permit today (I’ve missed the boys driving me around); Ending the night on my deck swing
  • What a fabulous day!*Rachel’s 17th birthday; *Wrapped up a rewarding week of ‪#‎VBS‬ by learning more about Jesus’ love and how to share it; *Daniel made it home from Turkey–we get him for an entire week!
  • Birthday party for Rachel, with special guests Grandma and Grandpa; Hearing about, seeing pictures of, and sampling candies and cookies Danny brought from Turkey; Playing our first games of badminton for 2015
  • Lovely church piano duet by Joey and Allison; Sampling Turkish tea with my oldest; This guy on his way to the lake

By His grace ≈


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Find hope in your real-life struggles. We'll chase it together! I am a wife; mom of 4 (including a young adult daughter with special needs); miscarriage mom of 5; author & follower of Jesus Christ. I write, edit, speak and enjoy everything outdoors.

6 comments on “The Best Way to Welcome the Day: Surrender
  1. Kim S says:

    Yes, Lord! Thanks for inspiring me early this morning, Julie. I need to be better at planning. Love your 1000 gifts list too! Have a great day, Kim Stewart

  2. I know it is easy to talk about letting go and letting God but it really is difficult to lay out. Pray I can grow to surrender each day.

  3. Cecelia Lester (Quiet Spirit) says:

    I used to tell God, as a part of my morning prayer, that I gave that day to Him. I need to get back in that habit. One time (2002) I remember doing it, we wound up looking at and purchasing a second car. Funny thing is that car is still on the road.
    It was a 1998 Buick Century. We gave it to our son when he went to Kansas in 2011. He drove it back to Indiana this spring. God did us a big thing back then. Could it be because I surrendered my day to Him?

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