Quaker Universalist Conversations

Season of Surrender

By Rachel Stacy

Today’s word is surrender.

Some of you know that I’m back from the Middle East. The transition has been challenging and I’ve returned to the Earlham School of Religion to complete my thesis. Since I’ve returned from Jordan much has happened in the Quaker world and much has happened in my own life. As I sit in worship, my prayers for the tragedies of the world have slowly increased in number and found company among another growing list of personal prayer concerns.

 It all feels overwhelming.

 Easter, Passover, and spring are approaching. Each day gets a bit warmer and a bit more sun appears through the new green leaves that are covering most of the trees in Indiana. Over the course of the transformation from darkness into light, my friends (including Brent Bill) in the blogosphere have been posting all sorts of devotionals. As I bring myself back into the discipline of regular writing, I offer up my own daily poetic devotional reflections.

 The word that arises for me today is surrender. It’s a state of being that is universally experienced. While those who are in places of oppression, violence or torture, surrender is a forced state of being that in itself is violent. Voluntary surrender, however, from a place of faith, is quite different. Surrender in this sense suggests a letting go of control. As I sit in worship parading through my long list of prayers, I find myself wondering what will arise from the silence when I am finished.


 Surrendering from this place of faith is not a passive act. I am not called to give up on the world and turn my back. I am not surrendering my participation, my call, my role as a faithful person. No, rather I am offering up my expectations, my imagination, my hopes and my dreams to the radical transformation that brings beauty into being.


 I am living into the understanding that the Divine Being, Living Christ, the Creator, in whatever form or by whatever name finds truth in your experience… knows your place, my place, our place in the grand puzzle of this life.

 Thy will be done.

 I pray that in this time of new beginnings, as snow melts and trees bud, in this time of new creation I can let go and be part of the beautiful chaos that is all around me. For in the beautiful chaos, the feelings of overwhelming sadness and overwhelming joy there is an intricate order, an amazing pattern of how things are.

 Way opens.

 I surrender my life to the beliefs, values, and love of my calling, of my community, of my relationship with the Divine. As Anais Nin once wrote “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” Bloom well my friends, surrender to the opening.

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