“If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it.”
Philippians 2:13 (NLT)
Jesus wants you to surrender your whole life to him. He doesn’t want just a part of your life, he wants all of it.
You may think you’ve surrendered enough to him, but Jesus wants it all. C.S. Lewis, the Christian apologist and author of the Narnia series, says Jesus is like a dentist. When you go to the dentist, you want him to fix your toothache. You want him to stop the pain. But the dentist isn’t willing to stop there. If he’s a good dentist, he’s going to poke and prod around your teeth to find out what is causing the toothache. He doesn’t just want to stop you from hurting, he wants to heal what is causing the pain.
This is what Jesus wants to do in your life. He wants to uncover all the sin and hurt and heartache that is keeping you from being the person he created you to be. As he uncovers these things, he corrects, comforts, and heals you.
He simply wants you to give control of your life to him. If you keep holding onto parts of your life, even as you follow Jesus, you will not experience the fullness of your new life in Christ.
But when you surrender everything to Jesus, there will never be a doubt about the outcome. When you “lose” your life for Jesus—surrendering it to him—you will gain real life.