“When the centurion, who was standing opposite Him, saw the way He breathed His last [being fully in control], he said, “Truly this man was the Son of God!”
A centurion was not a high ranking official in the Roman army but he was a leader of his men. He would have been in the thick of battles and was responsible for enforcing discipline and order. This included punishments like crucifixion. He would have been familiar with what death on a cross looked like. What was so different about Jesus’ death that made him stop and take notice? Jesus died with intention, fully surrendered. We know from other gospel accounts that they expected his death to take longer but found he was already dead when they came to speed up the process. Jesus surrendered at every step including his last breath. He did not fight the process but even spoke words of love and forgiveness amid horrendous suffering.
We have a choice in how we respond to Jesus: fully recognising him as the Son of God and living a life of surrender OR paying lip service to who he is without giving up our comfort or desires. Jesus didn’t only surrender in death but lived each day surrendered to where God would lead him. Each day I can lay down my own will, knowing God has more for me than I could ask or imagine.
What do you need to surrender or lay aside to follow God more closely? Write it down and take action on that today.
Jesus, we thank you for your surrender that allows us to be in relationship with you. Show us what we need to surrender in our lives today. Give us the courage to pursue you over our own comfort and desires.
Jodi spends her days sharing words of encouragement for emerging leaders and finding her way through the beautiful mess of parenting and relationships with her husband and daughter. She is the author of the book ‘Stepping Up In Leadership’, a speaker and the Managing Director for MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) Australia. Find out more at jokoepke.com.