• “Whenever there are two alternatives, true love always chooses Jesus.” – Basilea Schlink

Absolute Surrender by Susannah Spurgeon

(Written after her husband’s death.)

I am thine, and all that I have (1 Kings 20:4)

A LITTLE WHILE SINCE, dear Lord, you did permit me to sign a contract for the building of a House of Prayer to the honour of your Name. This morning, on the table of my heart there rests another covenant, one I would gladly renew with you, and to which I pray you to set your seal and signature. O my Lord, come near, I beg you; look down with your great love upon me as I write these solemn words, ‘I AM THINE, AND ALL THAT I HAVE’, and let my soul hear your tender response, ‘I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine.’

There is nothing on earth, O Lord, you know, that I desire so much as to be absolutely surrendered to you and to your service, I want to fullest spiritual blessing you can see fit to give me; and to obtain this, I do gladly yield up body, soul, and spirit – all I am and have – into your loving hands, that you may reign over, and rule within me as my absolute King and Master.

Do you ask me if I have counted the cost? Yes, Lord, it means, ‘I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.’ This is the cost, but your grace is sufficient to meet it, and to fill your child’s heart with joy unspeakable at the thought that she is no longer her own, but ‘bought with a price.’

‘I am thine.’  Who has so great a right to me as you have? Created by you, I belong of necessity to him who made me. Daily preserved by you, the life you maintain ought to be consecrated to your service. But the closest tie of all is that you have loved me, redeemed me from death, purchased me with the price of your own blood, and thus bound me to yourself for ever.

O love amazing and divine, why did you do all this for one so unlovely and unworthy? It is but another instance of ‘Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Thy sight’, and, since it has pleased you to be thus gracious, and you have made it possible for me to say, ‘I am thine’, it must naturally follow that I should add, ‘and all that I have’, laying every possession and power at your dear feet; for what have I, Lord, of anything good or excellent which is not your own gift to me?

I pray you to grant that my surrender may be real, practical, and complete; not in word only, but in deed and in truth, not simply a spiritual submission, which might be counted easy and pleasant, but that constant denial of self and its pleadings, that keeping under of the body, and bringing it into subjection, which I find so difficult to attain.

If you have given me but one talent, may that be so used as to bring the greatest interest of glory to you! My time must not be aimlessly frittered away, or employed for self-indulgence but every hour should bear on its fast flying wings the witness of something said, or done, or thought, for you, my Master, or your service. My money all belongs to you, and every coin of it should be spent, as in your sight, and with your approval. I pray that you would enable me in this matter to render a good account of my stewardship. Deliver me from the evil of looking on gold as a gift, to be used at my will and pleasure, instead of receiving it from you as a sacred loan or trust to be employed and expended only for your glory. Be it much or little which bestow on me, help me from my heart to say, ‘All that I have is thine.’

O my pitiful Lord, you will remember that my dearest and most precious possession is already in your safe keeping, and that you have long since taught me, by a sorrowful experience, to measure earth’s losses by heaven’s gain!

Yes, Lord, I can bless you that you have but removed my treasure into your own treasury, and gathered my priceless jewel into your own regalia. ‘Of Thine own have I given Thee’ when resigning into your arms that most dearly beloved one who is now with you in the glory. Dear Lord, in taking him (her husband, Charles), you seem to have taken ALL THAT I HAVE, so that it is no longer a question of ‘surrender’, but only of quiet, happy submission, as your will daily unfolds itself, and directs my work and my way.

Lord, keep me ever thus in the secret hiding-place of your love, ‘as having nothing, yet possessing all things’; it is safe a shelter for a weary, waiting soul, and so blessed a way of being made ready for the coming inheritance!

From Susannah Spurgeon’s devotional book ‘Free Grace and Dying Love’

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