There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,

    the holy habitation of the Most High.

God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved;

    God will help her when morning dawns. Psalm 46:4-5

Walls were how cities of old defended themselves. Walls weren’t perfect, but a well-built wall made it very difficult to capture. Conquering would involve planning and patience, and laying siege was the answer. Perhaps one of the most daunting things the inhabitants of these walled cities could possibly see was armies of a conqueror surrounding their city. Eliminating any movement into and out of the city caused scarcity of food and water. Conservation within the walls was paramount, and having a ready water supply was very beneficial. While hunger might be profound, and people would emaciate, lacking water was deadly. Life without water is impossible.

We could look at what’s going on today as something of a siege. The ‘walls’ that have been fabricated in cultures around the world are being laid siege by unseen forces, viral and spiritual. One occurs naturally in our fallen world, while the other takes advantage of the first by using our own fears.

While life without water is impossible, some would say life today is impossible. But is it? Living behind these self-dependence structures, all currently under ‘attack’, seems impossible, being painted into a corner by fear. How can life be possible? The words in the passage speak into this:

God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved;
God will help her when morning dawns.

God was present. God gave strength. God helped them. He did all these things back then, he’ll do them now. He is present with us. He will provide us strength. He will help. Here’s the cool part. Surrender is what’s asked of us to live with and for Jesus. Surrender. The word people in walled cities feared. The word we fear. Living in a ‘world’ where our dependence on self is paramount, surrender is the last thing we’d want to do.

And yet, Jesus told the rich young man who sought eternal life to shed his ‘walls’ and follow him (Mark 10:17-27). Surrender. While the Evil One brings all his forces to bear, with siege ramps, trebuchets, and catapults against our ‘walls’, surrender your self-dependence, and depend on Jesus. As you go through your day, from now on, continually ask Jesus to illuminate your ‘walls’ and tear them down. Give your trust to Jesus. Soon you’ll see life without Jesus is impossible. Surrender.

By Rich Obrecht