Ann Farabee: Surrender

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 6, 2019


Once again, Philippians 4:6 slipped my mind: Don’t worry about anything. Pray about everything.

There was a project that was taking all my attention. It was requiring all the organizational, management, and relational skills I had in my arsenal. I was too far in to quit. I had to complete the good work. Day after day, hour after hour, as I worked toward its completion, I kept thinking, “Why did I say YES?”

But, I had said YES. And… I had to finish it. And… I had to give my best.
My daily thought was, “If I can just get through this…”

As a friend was helping me sort out details to make it perfect, we began to realize that the outcome really did not just depend on us, but depended on the work and decisions of others, too. We really did not have total control.

There. I said it: CONTROL.
Yes, I was in charge of the project, but there were parts of it that I could not control. I stopped dead in my tracks when my friend said, “We just have to surrender.”
That word changed it all: SURRENDER.

All to Jesus, I surrender. All to Him I freely give? Right? Isn’t that how the hymn goes?
The word kept ringing in my ears: SURRENDER. I felt like the fugitive on the run who held up his arms in surrender almost gratefully to the one who had been searching for him. Being on the run had not worked – and the moment of surrender brought instant relief.
The meaning of surrender is ceasing resistance, submitting to authority, to give in to, or to give up a possession. I had been assigned this huge project. I was trying to complete it. I knew I had to surrender.

I closed my eyes, took a deep breath, and prayed, “Lord, I surrender this to You. I can’t do it on my own.”
God then began to pour into my spirit what surrender looked like:
• It was not ‘look what I did.’ It was ‘look what God did.’
• It was not about being in control. It was about releasing control.
• It was not about working for God. It was about God working in me.
• It was not about having power to do the work. It was about the power of Christ in me.
• It was not about personal results. It was about God results.
• It was not about my desires. It was about resting in God’s desires.
• It was not for the glory of Ann. It was for the glory of God.
• It was not harder after I surrendered. It actually was much easier.

Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
His plans – not ours. For me. For you.

Ann is a speaker and teacher. Contact her at or


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