Struggling to Surrender to God
Struggling to Surrender to God

Surrendering to God can be a profound and transformative journey, but it’s not always easy. Many of us struggle with relinquishing control, trusting in a higher power, and letting go of our fears and doubts. Whether you’re facing uncertainty, battling inner turmoil, or simply feeling overwhelmed by life’s challenges, the act of surrender can offer a path to peace and clarity.

In this article, we’ll explore eleven strategies to help you navigate this journey with faith and courage. Join us as we delve into the depths of surrender and discover the freedom it can bring to your spiritual life.

Understanding Potential Barriers When Surrendering to God

While the benefits of surrendering to God are well discussed and understood, the struggles that one goes to while surrendering are often ignored. Surrendering is not easy and so here we will shed light on some of the most reasons for struggling to surrender to God.

#1. Fear of the Unknown

Surrendering to God often means letting go of our need to control outcomes and accepting that we cannot always predict or understand the future. This can be frightening, especially if we are accustomed to feeling in control of our lives. We may fear what lies ahead, worry about making the wrong choices, or feel anxious about not knowing what the future holds. Overcoming this fear requires trust in God’s plan and a willingness to surrender our desires for certainty and control.

#2. Ego and Pride

Our ego and pride can get in the way of surrendering to God. We may struggle to admit that we are not in control and resist relinquishing our independence. Pride can make us believe that we know what is best for our lives and prevent us from trusting in God’s wisdom and guidance. Surrendering requires humility, the ability to set aside our pride, and acknowledge that we are not the ultimate authority in our lives.

#3. Lack of Trust

Surrendering to God requires trust in His plan and His timing. However, many of us struggle with trusting God, especially when we face challenges or uncertainties. We may doubt God’s goodness or question His intentions, leading to a lack of trust in His ability to care for us. Building trust in God involves developing a deeper relationship with Him, seeking His guidance through prayer and scripture, and reminding ourselves of His faithfulness in the past.

#4. Past Hurt or Trauma

Past experiences of hurt or trauma can create barriers to surrendering to God. We may struggle with feelings of anger, resentment, or bitterness towards God for allowing pain in our lives. These unresolved emotions can hinder our ability to trust God and surrender to His will. Healing from past hurt or trauma is essential for moving forward in our faith journey and learning to trust God’s plan for our lives.

#5. Desire for Autonomy

The desire for autonomy and independence can be a barrier to surrendering to God. We may want to be in control of our lives and resist surrendering to a higher power. This desire for control can stem from a fear of losing our identity or a belief that we know what is best for ourselves. Surrendering requires letting go of the need to be in control and trusting that God’s plan is better than our own.

#6. Attachment to Material World

Attachment to material possessions and worldly desires can hinder our ability to surrender to God. We may prioritize material wealth, status, or comfort over our spiritual growth and relationship with God.

This attachment can lead to a sense of emptiness and dissatisfaction, as we seek fulfillment in temporary pleasures rather than in our faith. Surrendering requires letting go of our attachment to the material world and recognizing that true fulfillment comes from our connection with God.

#7. Unresolved Sin or Guilt

Unresolved sin or guilt can create barriers to surrendering to God. We may carry shame and regret for past mistakes, making it difficult to believe that God could forgive us and offer us redemption. This sense of unworthiness can prevent us from fully surrendering to God’s love and grace. Surrendering requires acknowledging our sins, seeking forgiveness, and accepting God’s mercy and forgiveness.

#8. Misconceptions About Surrender

Misconceptions about surrender can also hinder our ability to fully surrender to God. We may believe that surrendering means giving up our freedom or autonomy, when in fact, it leads to greater freedom and peace. Surrendering is not about losing control, but about trusting in God’s plan and letting go of our fears and doubts. It is a process of letting God take the lead in our lives and following His guidance with faith and humility.

#9. Cultural or Religious Upbringing

Our cultural or religious upbringing can influence how we view surrender. Some cultures or religions may emphasize self-reliance and independence, making it challenging to surrender to a higher power. However, surrendering is a universal spiritual principle that transcends cultural and religious boundaries. It is about acknowledging our limitations as human beings and recognizing the need for divine guidance and support.

#10. Intellectual Doubts

Intellectual doubts can create barriers to surrendering to God. We may question the existence of God, the validity of scripture, or the teachings of our faith. These doubts can lead to a sense of uncertainty and confusion, making it difficult to fully trust in God’s plan. Surrendering requires us to reconcile our intellectual doubts with our spiritual beliefs, seeking answers through prayer, study, and reflection.

#11. Spiritual Dryness

At times, we may experience spiritual dryness, a lack of fervor or enthusiasm in our faith. This can be a barrier to surrendering to God, as we may feel distant from Him or unsure of His presence in our lives. Spiritual dryness can be caused by various factors, such as busyness, distractions, or unresolved inner conflicts.

Overcoming spiritual dryness requires a rekindling of our spiritual fire through prayer, worship, and seeking God’s presence in our daily lives. It involves trusting that God is always with us, even in the midst of our spiritual struggles.

Strategies When Struggling to Surrender to God

#1. Cultivate Prayer and Meditation Practices

Cultivating a regular practice of prayer and meditation can help deepen our connection with God and strengthen our ability to surrender. Prayer allows us to communicate with God, expressing our desires, fears, and gratitude. Meditation, on the other hand, helps us quiet our minds and be more receptive to God’s guidance. By making prayer and meditation a daily habit, we can cultivate a sense of peace and trust in God’s plan for us.

#2. Engage in Self-Reflection and Journaling

Self-reflection and journaling can help us identify and understand the barriers that prevent us from surrendering to God. Taking the time to reflect on our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors can reveal patterns that may be hindering our spiritual growth.

Journaling allows us to document our journey and track our progress, providing insights into areas where we need to surrender more fully. Engaging in these practices with an open and honest heart can lead to greater self-awareness and spiritual growth.

#3. Seek Guidance from Spiritual Mentors or Counselors

Seeking guidance from spiritual mentors or counselors can provide us with valuable insights and support as we navigate our spiritual journey. These individuals can offer wisdom, perspective, and encouragement, helping us overcome obstacles and deepen our relationship with God. Whether through formal counseling sessions or informal conversations, the guidance of others can be instrumental in helping us surrender more fully to God’s will.

#4. Practice Mindfulness and Presence in Daily Life

Practicing mindfulness and presence in our daily lives can help us stay connected to God and remain aware of His presence. Mindfulness involves being fully present in the moment, aware of our thoughts, feelings, and surroundings. By cultivating this awareness, we can become more attuned to God’s guidance and more willing to surrender to His will. Incorporating mindfulness practices into our daily routines can help us stay grounded in our faith and open to God’s leading.

#5. Study Scriptures and Spiritual Texts for Inspiration

Studying scriptures and spiritual texts can provide us with inspiration and guidance as we seek to surrender to God. These texts contain wisdom and teachings that can illuminate our path and help us understand God’s will for our lives.

By regularly immersing ourselves in scripture, we can deepen our faith and trust in God’s plan. Additionally, studying the lives of spiritual figures can provide us with examples of surrender and faithfulness to God’s will, inspiring us to do the same.

#6. Participate in Faith-Based Community Activities

Participating in faith-based community activities can provide us with a sense of belonging and support as we seek to surrender to God. Being part of a community of believers allows us to share our journey with others, seek guidance from those more experienced in their faith, and receive encouragement and accountability. Whether through attending worship services, joining a small group, or volunteering in ministry, engaging with our faith community can help us stay connected to God and His people.

#7. Surrender Small Aspects of Life Gradually

Surrendering to God doesn’t always have to be a monumental act. Sometimes, it’s about surrendering small aspects of our lives gradually, trusting that God is working in the details. This could mean letting go of a specific fear, releasing control over a particular situation, or relinquishing a cherished desire. By practicing surrender in these smaller areas, we can build our trust in God and prepare ourselves for greater acts of surrender in the future.

#8. Practice Gratitude and Trust in Daily Affirmations

Cultivating an attitude of gratitude can help shift our focus from our struggles to God’s blessings. By regularly practicing gratitude and acknowledging God’s goodness in our lives, we can foster a sense of trust in His plan. Daily affirmations of faith and trust can reinforce our commitment to surrendering to God, reminding us of His faithfulness and love. These practices can help us maintain a positive outlook and a trusting heart, even in the face of difficulties.

#9. Release Control through Surrender Rituals or Ceremonies

Engaging in surrender rituals or ceremonies can be a powerful way to symbolically release control and surrender to God. This could involve writing down our worries and fears on paper and then burning them as a symbol of letting go. Or it could be a simple act of kneeling in prayer and physically surrendering our burdens to God. These rituals can help us externalize our internal struggles and make our surrender more tangible and real.

#10. Connect with Nature and Experience Transcendence

Spending time in nature can provide us with a sense of awe and transcendence that can help us connect with God on a deeper level. Nature has a way of reminding us of God’s power and majesty, helping us see beyond ourselves and our problems. By immersing ourselves in the beauty of God’s creation, we can experience a sense of peace and surrender as we recognize our place in the larger tapestry of life.

#11. Embrace Vulnerability and Openness in Prayer

Being vulnerable and open in prayer can help us surrender our fears, doubts, and desires to God. Instead of trying to have all the answers or appear strong in our faith, we can come to God with honesty and humility, laying bare our struggles and seeking His guidance. This vulnerability allows us to release the burden of trying to control everything and opens us up to receive God’s grace and direction.

Closing Thoughts

Surrendering to God is a deeply personal and transformative journey that requires courage, faith, and trust. It’s a process of letting go of our need for control and allowing God to work in our lives in His way and His timing. As we navigate the challenges and uncertainties of life, surrendering to God can offer us a sense of peace, purpose, and direction.

By implementing these strategies and seeking God’s guidance, we can deepen our relationship with Him and experience the freedom and joy that come from surrendering to His will. Trust in God’s plan, surrender to His love, and find peace in His presence.