Tuesday, October 13, 2009


The word yield has come up more than once in the past week. Sunday afternoon just before choir practice, our music pastor handed me the following poem saying he knew I would appreciate it. I did.

Alone with none but thee, my God,
I journey on my way.
What need I fear when thou art near,
O King of night and day?
More safe am I within thy hand
than if a host should round me stand.

My destined time is known to thee,
and death will keep his hour;
did warriors strong around me throng,
they could not stay his power;
no walls of stone can man defend
when thou thy messenger dost send.

My life I yield to thy decree,
and bow to thy control
in peaceful calm, for from thine arm
no power can wrest my soul.
Could earthly omens e'er appall
a man that heeds the heavenly call?

The child of God can fear no ill,
his chosen dread no foe;
we leave our fate with thee, and wait
thy bidding when to go.
'Tis not from chance our comfort springs,
thou art our trust, O King of kings.

(attributed to St. Columba)

Seeing who wrote this poem, I was reminded once again of the verse in Jeremiah about returning to the ancient paths, which is a reference to God and His Word.

This morning in my quiet time with the Lord, I was brought face-to-face with a verse I memorized many years ago. "Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God" (Romans 6:13 KJV).

Hannah Whitall Smith wrote: "To yield anything simply means to give that thing to the care and keeping of another. To yield ourselves to the Lord, therefore, is to give ourselves to Him, giving Him the entire possession and control of our whole being. It means to abandon ourselves, to take hands off ourselves."

Ouch! Taking my hands off the controls of my life is scary. But anything less than that is sin because of my refusal to trust God. But until I do, His peace is lacking.

Last night at my local writer's group meeting, the speaker encouraged us to spend at least 10 minutes a day free-writing. Allowing ourselves to get rid of the "junk," learning to mine the treasures from that junk, and deleting the useless, unworthy material. She led us in several free-writing exercises, and I resisted. Why? Because it feels out-of-control to me. Eventually I started putting those thoughts down as a letter to God.

And this morning's quiet time was a revelation of what I still have to yield to Him. It's a process of God prying my fingers off the controls, even though I've said often that I'm surrendering all to Him. It's like peeling the layers of an onion. It's painful. His wonderful Holy Spirit digs deeper and deeper as I learn to yield all to Him.

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