“All to Jesus I surrender.
All to Him I freely give.
I will ever love and trust Him
In His presence daily live.”
These are the lyrics to the first stanza of Judson Van DeVenter’s hymn “I Surrender All”. Judson said, “The song was written while I was conducting a meeting at East Palestine, Ohio, in the home of George Sebring (founder of the Sebring Campmeeting Bible Conference in Sebring, Ohio, and later developer of the town of Sebring, Florida). For some time, I had struggled between developing my talents in the field of art and going into full-time evangelistic work. At last the pivotal hour of my life came, and I surrendered all. A new day was ushered into my life. I became an evangelist and discovered down deep in my soul a talent hitherto unknown to me. God had hidden a song in my heart, and touching a tender chord, He caused me to sing.”
As it was with Judson Van DeVenter, so it was with me and my relationship with God. The moment came in my life when I realized that I needed to surrender my all to Him and to trust in His saving grace through the placing of my faith in the finished work of Christ on the cross. When I did, a new day was ushered into my life.
This surrendering of one’s self to God in order to usher in a new day occurs at the mission as well. Men and women across the ministry are faced with the decision of either continuing doing things their way or surrendering their lives to God, trusting in Him to direct them down a bright and hope-filled path. I am encouraged when I see men here at the Lighthouse surrender themselves to God. I hear it in their voices. I see it in their faces. I witness it in their lives by the decisions they make. Through their lives, I am encouraged to continue down the bright and hope-filled path that God has laid out for me. In fact, I am challenged to live my life, day by day, for the Lord.
My this be a challenge to you to get to know some of the men and women whose lives have been surrendered to God. And may this be a challenge to you as well – if you haven’t done so already – to surrender your all to God.
Chris Ellison Director, Lighthouse Rescue Mission