Saturday, July 08, 2006

When to surrender

"Surrender"--it has such a powerfully negative reputation in our society today. To surrender can sometimes mean a lack of sufficient will; it often times warns of a deficiency in something. "If you just tried a little harder, if you just did a little more..." seems to want to follow most people who surrender. Surrendering implies that we no longer have control, that something else has overpowered us. In modern times where everyone wants to be in control (or appear to be in control), is it a wonder that the act of surrendering is almost like a self-inflicted curse? Yet, surrendering can be a good thing. It is not the lack of action, as it sometimes appears to be. Sometimes it is the best thing to do.

The reason I am talking about this word is that it has been on my heart. I have been a bit absent from this blog and from my writing because of specific issues that I needed to deal with. I am the kind of person who likes to be in control. I like things to happen when I want them to happen and how I want them to happen, and I like to plan how I want things to look, feel, and so on. If I am not the one doing something or planning something, it is generally difficult for me to trust that it will be done well, particularly if the thing in question is something that deeply interests me. In the past few weeks, however, it seems my efforts at control are completely useless and unnecessary. Nothing I do seems to affect any significant change. Yet, I feel the need to do something, anything. It does not matter what, even if that thing drains me. I feel like the person who keeps pressing the elevator button, even though the elevator is not going to come any faster. Still, I keep pressing the button.

I spoke with a friend and we prayed, and she said that word that my heart had been feeling but that my mind was reluctant to bring to my consciousness. When I have done my best, what more can I expect of myself? If I expect more of myself than my absolute best, then I fall into a pit of anxiousness and worry. It becomes difficult to see the things that I have accomplished or positively influenced, and it becomes difficult to see the happiness dancing around my life, wishing me to dance with it. The result is that I start to lose my confidence and wear sadness on my face.

I had to admit it: some things are beyond my control, and this is all right. I am only human. I can only do so much. The rest I have to, by faith, leave to God and trust that whatever happens is, in some way, for my benefit. It is so nice to shake of all these worries. I feel lighter. I can finally grasp that I have a party in a few hours and that people are coming to celebrate with me. Yes, that is right. I have a Book Launch Party today. I am going to go get my dancing shoes. It is going to be a beautiful day. I am going to put on my best smiles, my best look. I am going to let the beauty radiate from within me. This much I can do, and it is sure to inspire others.

Quick lesson of the day: Strive to change what you can change, and be wise; don’t waste your time, thoughts, and energy on what you cannot change. Listen to your heart.




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3 Comments:

At 15/7/06 2:09 AM, Anonymous Rose DesRochers said...

What a wonderful post. "I had to admit it: some things are beyond my control, and this is all right. I am only human. I can only do so much. The rest I have to, by faith, leave to God and trust that whatever happens is, in some way, for my benefit. It is so nice to shake of all these worries. I feel lighter." This part touched me the most as I feel that way.

 
At 15/7/06 10:00 AM, Anonymous Divine Calm said...

Surrendering is so tough for me too. But the trick is to surrender just enough without losing who you are: a fighter.

By the way, I'm blogrolling your site. Fantastic!

 
At 16/7/06 12:10 AM, Blogger Rosemary Esehagu said...

Hello, Rose. Yes, those words are quite difficult to let out, but it really does feel good once you do it.

Hello, Divine Calm. Thank you for stopping by. I do agree with you; the trick is knowing when, for how long, and how to surrender. Surrendering can be that little break one needs in order to figure out new strategies, to figure out what one needs to do or needs to stop doing, to clear one's head, and so on--this is why it is needed once in a while. In some sense, it is really part of a strategy to maintain effective control of one's situation.

 

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