Day 12

I Surrender All

from the Go Tell It on the Mountain reading plan

2 Chronicles 30:6-9, Psalm 116:12-19, Matthew 16:24-28,  Acts 21:10-14, Romans 12:1-2, Titus 2:11-14

BY Guest Writer

Scripture Reading: 2 Chronicles 30:6-9, Psalm 116:12-19, Matthew 16:24-28,  Acts 21:10-14, Romans 12:1-2, Titus 2:11-14

Though he’d grown up a simple Michigan farm boy, Judson Van DeVenter always loved the arts, especially painting and music. He eventually pursued his artistic dreams at the collegiate level, and after graduation moved to Pennsylvania, where he immediately took up a position as an art teacher.

As a young adult he was able to venture out on a tour of some of Europe’s finest galleries, taking in great masterpieces and refining his own painterly skills. Some said he had the makings of a truly exceptional artist, poised to take his place among the greats.

Judson had been a devout believer since his youth, and as an adult, he became active in the music ministry at his church. Though he’d always loved being an artist, the tug of ministry life proved a real struggle for him. God had all along been wooing him to full-time ministry, and it seemed that his hope of a life of artistic influence would have to go. After years of struggle, Judson knelt in prayer, saying, “I surrender all to Thee.”19 Years later, he penned the hymn inspired by this pivotal moment of calling.

From this patient life of submission, God brought forth much fruit—not only through the impact of this famous American hymn, but also through Judson’s ongoing service at Florida Bible Institute, where a young Billy Graham was inspired by Judson’s ministry.

As in Judson’s life, the gentle moving of God’s Spirit often works by ordinary means to affect in us extraordinary surrender. May our hearts, quickened by His Spirit, be conformed to His likeness, molded by His love, and enlivened by His power, that we may rest on nothing of our own, but surrender all to Him.

I Surrender All
by Judson W. Van DeVenter

All to Jesus I surrender,
All to Him I freely give;
I will ever love and trust Him,
In His presence daily live.

I surrender all, I surrender all;
All to Thee, my blessed Savior,
I surrender all.

All to Jesus I surrender,
Make my, Savior, wholly Thine;
Let me feel Thy Holy Spirit,
Truly know that Thou art mine.

All to Jesus I surrender,
Lord, I give myself to Thee;
Fill me with Thy love and power,
Let Thy blessing fall on me.


Caleb Faires draws and writes at a table he built from poplar boards. He loves to build and create. Blank paper is an invitation for lines and beauty. He lives in Tennessee with his wife and five children. See what he’s up to at

Petersen, Randy. Be Still, My Soul: The Inspiring Stories Behind 175 of the Most-Loved Hymns. Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., 2014.

Post Comments (41)

41 thoughts on "I Surrender All"

  1. Charla says:

    I love these artslcei. How many words can a wordsmith smith?

  2. Mackenzie says:

    i’ve recently gotten out of a relationship bc we weren’t doing things Gods way. we have both truly surrendered all aspects in our lives to Him. He is in control of everything and He is able to do exceedingly and abundantly of what we ask and think. ill admit i’m afraid of the future without my boyfriend, i just have to trust this is what God wants right now and believe that He wants the best for me

  3. GramsieSue says:

    Surrendering all to Jesus…it sounds difficult and painful. But what a blessing to completely surrender all to Him,to let Him carry our burdens, to let Him be in control, to let Him guide our steps. And how many times have I given Him something only to take it back? And how many times have I held tightly to something with hands clenched around it, afraid to let go? I’m examining my heart this morning asking God to show me areas I haven’t surrendered…and it hurts. I need to surrender the pain inflicted by a relative and forgive and let go…and I can only do this with His strength. It only continues to fester inside me if I hold onto it so yes, Lord, I surrender this to you; I don’t want to carry it anymore–take it and free me from this burden. As I continue to search my heart I realize there’s a big one I am clinging to, and I’ve held this so long, and I’m really scared to let go. What if I let go and I open myself to more pain? This woman knows how to hurt me. But oh my, what if He takes the pain away? How can I hold on? I can’t! Yes, Lord, I surrender this as well! Take it and let me be free of it! Give me freedom in knowing You love me and want only the best for me!

    All to Jesus I surrender, Lord I give myself to Thee
    Fill me with Thy love and power, let Thy blessing fall on me.

    1. Chris says:

      Do you live in Colorado?

      1. GramsieSue says:

        No. Missouri

    2. Teresa H says:

      Thank you Sue for sharing something so personal…for trusting our SRT community. I’ve only been here for about a month but have found so much from everyone sharing honestly. I now will be searching…not far or long I’m sure…to find those things that I hold so tight. Those things that scare me so badly..the things that I’ve pushed down and tried to hide and pretend they don’t exist because they are too scary or too hurtful to address..even with Jesus. What a huge mistake!! I don’t have to hide them from Jesus for He sees all. I merely need to ask Him for help…to help me release give them up to my savior. Why would I not? He loves ME! He will never leave me hanging. If He is my everything…why won’t I give it up and ask Him to help me?? Thank you Sue for showing me through your openness… That its time to let go and surrender ALL to my Jesus! I will pray that He helps you through this, every step of the way. We already know He will…so I will pray for strength and comfort for you as you walk through this amazingly hard step…to ultimately reach a closer relationship with Him through transparency and trust! God’s blessings to you.

      1. Ollie says:

        Essays like this are so important to bradeoning people’s horizons.

  4. Jess says:

    Ladies, would you be in prayer for me? I’m applying for jobs in education as I just received my teaching credential. I had a rough experience during my program and almost have a fear of entering into the classroom again. Would you pray for peace? Would you also pray that the Lord would lead me to a job that would either give me a love for the classroom or show that I can use the skills I have learned in the classroom in the business world?

    1. Laura says:

      Jess…praying for you. I’ve been a teacher for 17 years, and I can certainly understand the heart that’s both for education AND tentative of it, too – it can be SO overwhelming. I will say my job got increasingly less stressful when I learned to measure my “successful days” against two criteria: did I challenge my kids and did I cheerlead them? That obviously doesn’t mean that the curriculum doesn’t matter (it does). But…but…we are so often getting evaluated on IMPOSSIBLE standards, and that can make us feel like we didn’t measure up. Bottom line: we measure up just fine, but you might not SEE evidence of that on a piece of evaluative paper. LOVING and LEADING – that’s what they need the most of anyway. Praying that your heart will find it’s place where it can be FREE to be what it was created to be, and if that’s in the classroom then many will be BLESSED by your influence.

      1. Chris says:

        I underline everything Laura said!! I taught high school 32 years! Felt like my most important role was cheerleader!! Set “great expectations! And high standards” then lovingly cheer them on!! Greatest job on earth– next to current job at local Pregnancy help center!!

  5. Meredith Lea says:

    Yep this is what I needed. We are walking through a autism diagnosis with my 2 year old daughter. It’s been a long road this last year filled with deep denial and reluctant acceptance. I surrender to God because if I keep going at this pace I won’t last.

    1. Tina says:

      Dear Meredith, thinking of you and yours and holding you up in prayer… this is an uncertain journey,….
      But God…
      He and He alone can bring you the peace, the wisdom, the understanding, the love and grace and more needed to walk this journey… you are never alone, surrendering to Him who knows, is a good first step…
      Praying you feel His presence right now dear Sister….
      Will continue to hold your family up to the Lord God in prayer…
      Sending a love wrapped hug filled with prayers of peace and grace… xxxx

  6. At Peace says:

    I agree with Kelly. I wish it was a one and done, but it is a daily practice. This morning as I walked I was humming ‘I Surrender All’ and pondering what I need to surrender today. As I listed each one another favorite song came to mind. ‘I’d Rather Have Jesus’ was my reply to each thing I was surrendering. Yes, some are hard to surrender and I don’t really want to, but I’d rather have Jesus. I thank God each morning for each of you sweet sisters. You are such an inspiration to me.

    1. Georgianna says:

      Beautiful. Thanks for sharing

    2. GramsieSue says:

      Yes, I’d rather have Jesus!

  7. Tochi Heredia says:

    I have noticed that surrender takes different forms depending where you are in life.
    For a while I have struggled with being trapped inside my mind. It feels as if it’s taken me captive and there’s nothing I can do but sit back and wait. But last night, watching the newest Christopher Nolan movie –a WW2 epic– made me realize that surrender can also look like fighting. To let go of oneself and become a living sacrifice isn’t a passive thing, to pursue a godly life and await the fulfilment of our faith patiently requires effort on our part because it’s so much different then our sinful individual will.

    I have let myself become an spectator of my own life. Busying myself with worthless things, to avoid feeling pain and looking at my inability to obtain what I truly need.
    I am encouraged today to rest on nothing of my own, “to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age.” (Titus 2:12), to fight for my soul.

    Father, make my, Savior, wholly Thine; let me feel Thy Holy Spirit, truly know that Thou art mine.

    1. DebbieinAZ says:


    2. Jeanette says:

      Thanks, Tochi! Enjoyed your perspective this morning.

    3. Georgianna says:

      Wow. So well said. Gonna have to meditate on that one myself today! Thanks for sharing.

    4. SuzD says:

      Thank you for your words. Struck a note with me this morning.

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