I’ve always known that this was true, but for some reason, I seem to forget and have to learn it over and over again. Maybe that’s why God continually brings me to the impatient end of myself; that place where there is simply nothing you can do except bellyache or rise above it. Well, this week I’m learning the old lessons all over again.
I spent a week spinning so many plates: two jobs, an active family, and tons of responsibilities. In both jobs I was forced to a place where matters were completely out of control. I was a very uncomfortable place, filled with uncertainty. I started to find myself trying to control the outcome on several fronts, all at the same time. Busy little worker bee. Always busy. I was beginning to panic because I felt overwhelmed by a number of concurrent issues that were out of my control. And then it hit me. Why am I at all concerned with the stuff that is out of my control?
Why do I think that stuff belongs to me in the first place? Why do I try to take on even MORE responsibility for things that I don’t have to be responsible for? When I sat down and wrote out the list of stuff that I actually AM responsible for, I realized that the list was not only manageable, but it was filled with the stuff I really enjoyed doing anyway. All the stressful stuff beyond my control was driving me crazy and it was MY CHOICE to let it drive me crazy. I don’t actually have to feel bad for NOT trying to control the things that are OUT of my control anyway. So guess what; starting today, I’m letting go of the stuff I can’t control and I am giving it all back to God. Not that I expect that God is going to do all the work, there are other people who do control those situations, and they can take the responsibility for them. But I am going to trust that God loves me enough to guide my path as those uncontrollable things take their final shape. I don’t have to try to determine the outcome in some effort to either protect myself or the people I love. God will take care of us.
Ultimately my control issues have been wrapped up in my trust issues. Here’s what I have to trust: God does actually love me enough to take care of me. That’s all there is to it. That’s why I can release control of all these concerns, not because I trust that God exists, not because I trust that He is powerful and that He is concerned with my life. I can let go because I trust that He loves me.
John 16:25-28I think I feel better already...
“Though I have been speaking figuratively, a time is coming when I will no longer use this kind of language but will tell you plainly about my Father. In that day you will ask in my name. I am not saying that I will ask the Father on your behalf. No, the Father himself loves you because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God.”
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