We all know how annoying having a song stuck in our heads can be. Sometimes it can get to the point of singing another song just to get the other one out! I guess I can say I have been blessed this week to have “I surrender all” stuck in my head. I’ve been singing it all week, but this morning I really sat down and listened to the lyrics. These four lines stood out the most:
All to Jesus I surrender; Humbly at His feet I bow, Worldly pleasures all forsaken; Take me Jesus, take me now.
These lines remind me of a scripture. Luke 9:23 says, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves, take up their cross daily and follow me.” I feel like the lines in this song should be our reply to this scripture. Jesus said, “Deny yourselves”. Just like the song we should give up everything, “surrender all to Jesus”, and “humbly bow” at His feet, abandoning all the things of the world that hinder us from completely following Him. “Worldly pleasures all forsaken.”
“Take up your cross daily”. Now this one is a little more complicated to understand. Many people say, “That’s my cross to bear” thinking of it as we have to carry along our burdens when we follow Christ. However, this is not the case. In the first century, the cross was symbolic and reminded everyone of a painful, unmerciful death. Part of the humiliating sentence was to carry the cross to the place of the crucifixion. In Jesus’ case, he carried it to Golgotha. It was torture because the criminals were practically carrying the thing that was to kill them in a few short hours. All the while they are carrying the cross, they are being laughed at and spit upon by the crowd, a terrible addition to the humiliation.
It’s the same for us. When we take up our cross, we take up with us the entire reality that we are willing to die for the sake of Jesus name. We also must be willing to take on all the ridiculing and humiliation that comes with it.
Lastly, Jesus says, “Follow me”. Now that we are willing to give up everything for our Savior, we must call out to Him, our souls ready and anticipating everything that lies ahead. We must tell him we are ready,
“Take me Jesus, take me now”.
Emma McCranie ©2011
Many thanks to Emma for allowing me to share this devotion with you. Although it was written 10 years ago, the message could not be more timely.