Why Is It So Important To Surrender?
Each of us has a little manager whose self-appointed job is to manage and negotiate the treacherous waters of the non-existent fantasy illusion with the goal of attaining the maximum benefit. This becomes an unwinnable turbulent process because the ego is always moving the goal line and even changing the game. The ego will enroll you that something will make you happy and when you obtain that it will say, “ Oh, that wasn’t the thing that will really make you happy. Try over here.” Then when you achieve that, it changes its mind again. As the Course states:
Such is the ego’s plan for your salvation. Surely you can see how it is in strict accord with the ego’s basic doctrine, “Seek but do not find.” For what could more surely guarantee that you will not find salvation than to channelize all your efforts in searching for it where it is not?(W71.4)
This is a disheartening and exhausting game.
As long as the ego can keep you trying to manage the chaos of the illusion it wins. Why? The ego’s sole desire is that you make the illusion real. Why would you attempt to manage something that was not real? By attempting to manage it you are making it real. That’s why at the end of the Workbook Jesus tells us that the Holy Spirit will direct us home when we are ready to “retire from the world and seek reality instead.” When we are ready to surrender and stop trying to manage the unreal and the unmanageable, or more succinctly to stop believing that we are the child who is attempting to, He will guide us home. What are you still trying to manage? List all of things your child self is trying to manage on a piece of paper. Write down anything you are worried about, afraid of, trying to achieve, or trying to fix. Write it all down. Now find a pile of books in your home. Take a book for each item on your list. Now walk about with your books for ten minutes.
Are you tired yet? Pretty heavy for not being real aren’t they? Now imagine that you are a small child and these books don’t represent issues in the present but from the past. What might they represent from your childhood? Got any ideas? So you are a child trying to manage the unmanageable from the past that isn’t even real. No wonder you are anxious, overwhelmed, and exhausted. Maybe it’s time to surrender. Surrender to the fact that you can’t manage the unreal and the unmanageable and then surrender to the realization that you wouldn’t want to even if you could because it is costing you the peace and certainty that comes with a “life” directed by the Holy Spirit.
Surrender is a tricky business. It is easy to surrender when everything is “bad”. Who wants to manage a failing enterprise? The challenge comes when your “life” seems to be going well. That’s when the real temptation comes in to let the ego get back in the driver’s seat. Before you know it, it has driven you off a cliff, AGAIN. This could be called the Israel problem. In the Bible the nation of Israel goes through many cycles of listening to God, prospering and then turning back to their pagan worship. Then they are conquered and enslaved or some other negative happening. When everything turns to crap and they’ve suffered enough, they repeat and dump their idols and go back to taking instruction from God and then they prosper again. In our Course language people come to God when what they are making real sucks. When what they are making real is pleasing to them, they dump God.
If we allow ourselves to be directed by the Holy Spirit, we will have peace. If we want to let the ego drive us, we will have dis-ease. It is simple logic. If we take direction from the Holy Spirit He will support us in not making it real and we will heal. If we don’t, we will judge and suffer.
Healing is not a reward and suffering is not a punishment. They are simply the direct result of two separate thought systems. Your choice of which to use will determine your results.
Stop trying to manage the unmanageable. Surrender. Let whatever dream come that comes, knowing that you, with the Holy Spirit’s help, will use it as an aid to help you reach the home where God abides. Rest in His arms today knowing that everything is being taken care of, everything is in the Holy Spirit’s capable hands.
Do not interpret against God’s Love, for you have many witnesses that speak of it so clearly that only the blind and deaf could fail to see and hear them. This year determine not to deny what has been given you by God. Awake and share it, for that is the only reason He has called to you. His Voice has spoken clearly, and yet you have so little faith in what you heard, because you have preferred to place still greater faith in the disaster you have made. Today, let us resolve together to accept the joyful tidings that disaster is not real and that reality is not disaster. Reality is safe and sure, and wholly kind to everyone and everything. There is no greater love than to accept this and be glad. For love asks only that you be happy, and will give you everything that makes for happiness.
You have never given any problem to the Holy Spirit He has not solved for you, nor will you ever do so. You have never tried to solve anything yourself and been successful. Is it not time you brought these facts together and made sense of them? This is the year for the application of the ideas that have been given you. For the ideas are mighty forces, to be used and not held idly by. They have already proved their power sufficiently for you to place your faith in them, and not in their denial. This year invest in truth, and let it work in peace. Have faith in Him Who has faith in you. Think what you have really seen and heard, and recognize it. Can you be alone with witnesses like these?(T16.II.8-9)
My home awaits me. I will hasten there.
If I so choose, I can depart this world entirely. It is not death which makes this possible, but it is change of mind about the purpose of the world. If I believe it has a value as I see it now, so will it still remain for me. But if I see no value in the world as I behold it, nothing that I want to keep as mine or search for as a goal, it will depart from me. For I have not sought for illusions to replace the truth.
Father, my home awaits my glad return. Your Arms are open and I hear Your Voice. What need have I to linger in a place of vain desires and of shattered dreams, when Heaven can so easily be mine?
This is my holy instant of release.
Father, it is today that I am free, because my will is Yours. I thought to make another will. Yet nothing that I thought apart from You exists. And I am free because I was mistaken, and did not affect my own reality at all by my illusions. Now I give them up, and lay them down before the feet of truth, to be removed forever from my mind. This is my holy instant of release. Father, I know my will is one with Yours.
And so today we find our glad return to Heaven, which we never really left. The Son of God this day lays down his dreams. The Son of God this day comes home again, released from sin and clad in holiness, with his right mind restored to him at last.