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Aug 1, 2019

Want a Deeper Surrender? Let It Go with This Novena.

Taylor Tripodi

This past week I had the privilege of leading worship at a Life Teen camp in Medina, Texas. It was a beautiful week! Besides being saturated in the theme of Mary’s fiat—reflecting on her openness to the will of God—we spent a significant amount of time talking about what it looks like to surrender, because a fiat to God, like Mary’s, must always lead us to let go and let God in. 

The host priest for the week led us all through many prayers of deep surrender, but God went beyond what I have become accustomed to. For most of my life, I thought surrendering to God meant letting go of all the bad: my sin, my mistrust, my fears and anxieties, my pride. But that doesn’t even scratch the surface of true surrender. He reminded me that to surrender to Christ means more than just giving up the bad in our hearts that needs to be transformed. It means giving God everything we are—including the good—and watching that transform as well. That means letting go of our plans for the future, our hopes and dreams, and even the people we love the most; yes, even the good.

Out of Control 

Surrender means giving up control to submit ourselves to the perfect will of God. This is my absolute downfall. I love being in control, I hate the feeling of being pushed out of the driver’s seat of my own life, I always think I know what’s best, and I think I’m the only one capable of achieving my own happiness, so I try to do everything myself.

To my embarrassment, this spills over into my relationship with God. So often I push him away because I’m afraid to give it all over to him, but then I end up falling flat on my face anyway. Ultimately, I forget how God designed every part of me. He knows every hair on my head, knows me better than I know myself, sees beyond what I see. He is God, not me.

Letting go and giving him control of my life is what will fulfill me the most and ultimately, what will lead me to heaven. This doesn’t mean my life will be easy, because God never promised us an easy life. The fact is, God’s ways are not our ways. God wants us to surrender to him, not because he’s this narcissist or a domineering person, but because he knows what is best for us! To surrender, we need to come to grips with a few things: 

1. Believing that God is Good 

He is so, so good! God is not a tyrant as some people suggest. If we ever had a doubt about who God is, Jesus revealed him to us:

“Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love” (1 John 4:8).

Love is good. Love is pursuing us and desperately trying to win us over! We need to believe in his goodness and mercy.

2. Trusting that He Has a Good Plan for You

Trusting what we can’t always see is so hard. We like to have plans for our future and want to be successful with our gifts. We want to do the will of God—but to do his will, we have to let go of our plans to accept his—which are much better than our own.

3. Realizing that You are Not Self-Sufficient 

God gives us the freedom to control our own lives. He does not force us to let him into the driver’s seat, but he says, “Trust me. I know what is best for you.” The more we grasp at happiness and try to achieve things without Christ, the more we will be let down. We were not made to do it by ourselves and cannot do it by ourselves, no matter how hard we try. We were made for him and need to embrace the truth that we are not, no matter how hard we try, self-sufficient.

All this to say, if we believe these things, which many of us verbally say we do, then we need to let go of control and surrender ourselves to God.

To make a first step toward this, I’ve started the “Surrender Novena”. This novena was written by a holy Italian priest, Fr. Don Dolindo, most well-known for his spirituality of surrender. He is currently up for canonization! He was very aware of the depth of human weakness and neediness, and saw this as a way of fostering continual union with God.

In this novena, he wrote what Our Lord revealed to him about divine abandonment from the perspective of Jesus addressing the soul. If God is calling you to a deeper surrender of whatever it is you’re holding onto, I would love for you to join me in praying this beautiful prayer of surrender. Together we can become more fully conformed to the will of Christ and allow him to transform our lives into vessels of his love.

The Surrender Novena

Read these words and pray the prayer on the designated day of the novena.

Day 1

Why do you confuse yourselves by worrying? Leave the care of your affairs to me and everything will be peaceful. I say to you in truth that every act of true, blind, complete surrender to me produces the effect that you desire and resolves all difficult situations.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 2

Surrender to me does not mean to fret, to be upset, or to lose hope, nor does it mean offering to me a worried prayer asking me to follow you and change your worry into prayer. It is against this surrender, deeply against it, to worry, to be nervous and to desire to think about the consequences of anything. It is like the confusion that children feel when they ask their mother to see to their needs, and then try to take care of those needs for themselves so that their childlike efforts get in their mother’s way.

Surrender means to placidly close the eyes of the soul, to turn away from thoughts of tribulation and to put yourself in my care, so that only I act, saying “You take care of it.”

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 3

How many things I do when the soul, in so much spiritual and material need, turns to me, looks at me and says to me, “You take care of it”, then closes its eyes and rests. In pain you pray for me to act, but that I act in the way you want. You do not turn to me, instead, you want me to adapt your ideas. You are not sick people who ask the doctor to cure you, but rather sick people who tell the doctor how to.

So do not act this way, but pray as I taught you in the our Father: “Hallowed be thy Name”, that is, be glorified in my need. “Thy kingdom come”, that is, let all that is in us and in the world be in accord with your kingdom. “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven”, that is, in our need, decide as you see fit for our temporal and eternal life. If you say to me truly: “Thy will be done”, which is the same as saying: “You take care of it”, I will intervene with all my omnipotence, and I will resolve the most difficult situations.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 4

You see evil growing instead of weakening? Do not worry. Close your eyes and say to me with faith: “Thy will be done. You take care of it”. I say to you that I will take care of it, and that I will intervene as does a doctor and I will accomplish miracles when they are needed. Do you see that the sick person is getting worse? Do not be upset, but close your eyes and say, “You take care of it.” I say to you that I will take care of it, and that there is no medicine more powerful than my loving intervention. By my love, I promise this to you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 5

And when I must lead you on a path different from the one you see, I will prepare you; I will carry you in my arms; I will let you find yourself, like children who have fallen asleep in their mother’s arms, on the other bank of the river. What troubles you and hurts you immensely are your reason, your thoughts and worry, and your desire at all costs to deal with what afflicts you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 6

You are sleepless; you want to judge everything, direct everything and see to everything and you surrender to human strength, or worse—to men themselves, trusting in their intervention—this is what hinders my words and my views. Oh how much I wish from you this surrender, to help you; and how I suffer when I see you so agitated! Satan tries to do exactly this: to agitate you and to remove you from my protection and to throw you into the jaws of human initiative. So, trust only in me, rest in me, surrender to me in everything.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 7

I perform miracles in proportion to your full surrender to me and to your not thinking of yourselves. I sow treasure troves of graces when you are in the deepest poverty. No person of reason, no thinker, has ever performed miracles, not even among the saints. He does divine works whosoever surrenders to God. So don’t think about it any more, because your mind is acute and for you it is very hard to see evil and to trust in me and to not think of yourself. Do this for all your needs, do this all of you and you will see great continual silent miracles. I will take care of things, I promise this to you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 8

Close your eyes and let yourself be carried away on the flowing current of my grace; close your eyes and do not think of the present, turning your thoughts away from the future just as you would from temptation. Repose in me, believing in my goodness, and I promise you by my love that if you say “You take care of it” I will take care of it all; I will console you, liberate you and guide you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 9

Pray always in readiness to surrender, and you will receive from it great peace and great rewards, even when I confer on you the grace of immolation, of repentance, and of love. Then what does suffering matter? It seems impossible to you? Close your eyes and say with all your soul, “Jesus, you take care of it.” Do not be afraid, I will take care of things and you will bless my name by humbling yourself. A thousand prayers cannot equal one single act of surrender, remember this well. There is no novena more effective than this.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything!

Mother, I am yours now and forever.

Through you and with you

I always want to belong

completely to Jesus.

These words come from the living experience of the presence of Jesus in the prayer life of Father Dolindo Ruotolo and you are invited to make them your own as you pray the novena.

Is there a part of your life that you need to surrender more completely to God? Pray this novena and let us know what happens in the comments at the bottom of the page.

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About Taylor Tripodi

Taylor Tripodi is a twenty-something cradle Catholic from Cleveland, Ohio aspiring for sainthood. She graduated from Franciscan University, majoring in theology and catechetics and is now a full-time musician, traveling all over and spreading God’s unfailing love through word and song. In her spare time she enjoys making scented candles, seeking adventure, and being present to her large, crazy, Italian family. Want to hear her sing? Check out

Featured photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

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