I know I write this same thought every couple of months or so, but here it is again.
Open your hand and let go of what you are holding onto.
The only acceptable outcome.
The excuses of the past.
The flower of youth.
The control of your child (and hence the responsibility for their behavior).
The pain of past hurts.
The guilt of past mistakes, sins, rebellion…call it what you want to call it. We all have times when we deliberately, knowingly hurt another person and called it, “Right for me.”
When Moses dropped his staff in the wilderness, it was dropping the last of what he was hoping in. He’d given up everything. It was all he had left as he tended sheep on the backside of the wilderness. He’d been willing to give up a royal upbringing and political position, for identification with his heritage as one of God’s chosen people. This, too, he rejected when he murdered someone and had to flee as neither heritage nor upbringing could protect him from the consequences of his choice.
Hence, the backside of the wilderness and his only gear being a stick.
The rod represented life to him. It was a tool as well as a weapon. He depended on it and never laid it down.
He had nothing else. Nothing left. He didn’t plan it that way. But that was when he ran into God. Who said:
“Put down your rod.”
Things didn’t get better when he put it down. They got worse.
God said, “Okay, pick the snake up by the tail.”
Um… That’s not what we do.
It became a rod again. No longer a venomous threat to his life. Having been released to God, known for its identity in Him, it could then be fully restored to utility again.
But really first it had to be dropped. Released. Surrendered. He had to be willing to stand in the empty wilderness with nothing.
Open handed surrender is a fairly objectionable concept to me. Not because I don’t need it, but because I seem always to be fishing for another thing to hold onto. Which always ends up becoming a snake sooner or later.
It’s not the identity of the thing I hold… it’s the act of opening my hand that God is looking for.
Permission to replace my crutch with a scepter.