In the lyrics of a 43-year-old white man from D.C.

I’ve been discovering lately how certain songs just seem to fit. It’s as if the singer gave a voice to the thoughts inside my head, provided a melody for the feelings that were too difficult to understand, let alone describe. Though we may have completely different backgrounds, the songwriter sometimes has this unbelievable ability to speak right to me, make me feel and think.

As I drove back to campus today, I listened to TobyMac for almost two hours. The lyrics are still a bit unfamiliar since I haven’t listened to the cd that much since buying it. But a few of his lyrics just stuck with me as I made my way along the turnpike.

Cause I’m letting go of everything I am
And I’m holding on to everything You are
I’m letting go of everything I once was
– from All In (Letting Go)

As I listened to this song, I thought about this idea of letting go, of surrendering to God. And I thought it was interesting that TobyMac talks about letting go of who he is and who he was. But what about who he will be? That’s the hardest thing for me to surrender. The Future. Each day is consumed with thoughts of tomorrow and the next day, the next week, the next ten years. I am wary of talking about my “plans” for the future, though. I like to think that God has a great sense of humor, and he probably laughs the hardest when we talk of our plans. Who are we to map out our future?

Yet I am not held back from having hopes and dreams. I imagine the healthy and happy marriage to an amazing husband/best friend, the dream job, etc. And sometimes, I say to God, “Alright, I know this may not be what You have in store. So have Your way in my life. I know that what You have planned for me is so much greater than I could ever imagine.” But then other times, I pray, “God, I really hope Your will looks a lot like my hopes and dreams. Because right now, this looks pretty great to me. So if You could move right along so I can see what You have planned, that would be great.” For me, the future is so much harder to surrender than the past. It seems like there is so much more at stake. It requires me to abandon this false sense of control over my life, to admit that I’m not calling the shots, to go along for the ride and see what happens. It requires a leap of faith into the arms of my Father. And while it may feel like I am free falling, even plummeting at times, knowing that God is there to catch me makes it worth it all.

As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
– Isaiah 55:9


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