Are you out of control? I'll admit, being in control or being the boss has always been something I highly valued. Being in charge and knowing what's going on seemed to be where I fit in the great scheme of things. I liked leading.
As a matter of fact, I liked it so much that I was always the one to make the decisions. I wanted to direct the outcomes to be what I wanted or at least what I felt were required.
Lately, though, being in control just takes too much energy. I'm not administering or managing. I'm simply trying to control the chaos and confusion.
In case you're wondering, that's not working.
As a child, I didn't like it when I saw adults in my life who seemed out of control. Even at a young age, I stepped in to be in control. At least then I'd know if supper got made or the clothes washed and dried.
Not knowing if it would get done would drive me more crazy than just doing it myself. These days, trying to do it all or make sure it all gets done is beyond exhausting and borders on a state of paralysis.
Giving God Control
Understanding this has been the best thing that has ever happened to me. I handed my need to control everything to God because I no longer had the capacity to do it. I didn't struggle with it. I just handed it to Him.
When He accepted my "gift," I didn't ask Him, "What do You give me in exchange?" I didn't want anything else to manage. Still, I was immediately engulfed in peace. What a welcome relief.
Then, insight and clarity began to flood me. God gave me a gift of leadership and administration, but He gave it to me to steward. That means I only have authority over the things He hands me.
This may not be a major revelation to you, but I am not God. However, as His daughter, I can lead you to Him if I am not trying to be Him.
Some gifts God gives us flow so naturally they begin to take over our lives and we become them. When that happens, they can overwhelm us to the point of exhaustion.
We need to rest, even from our gifts. God created the heavens, earth, plants, animals, mankind and everything we need to sustain life in a mere seven days (see Gen. 1:1). But notice, on the seventh day, He rested (see Gen. 2:1). He laid His gifts aside and rested. Was He still Creator? Yes, but He didn't let His gifts overwhelm Him.
Here's a question I've been asking myself. If the God of the universe rested on the seventh day, why do I think I have to work nonstop?
We need to guard our gifts in a sacred place in our hearts where God holds them until we need them. Then, He pulls them out and mixes them with a capacity so far beyond ourselves that we know we are no longer in control. God is.
"God wants to use you beyond your capacity, beyond your gifts, because then He gets the glory," Bill Johnson said.
These days I am seeking to be out of control so God can be in control. When that happens, I expect to see all of heaven break loose in my life. I will see miracles, acceleration of promises and supernatural favor in order for His will to be done on earth as it is in heaven (see Matt. 6:10).
All of this happens when we focus on what God wants instead of what we want. When we stop spinning in circles trying to control everything and everyone around us and just listen and follow our leader.
We were not made to control everything. We were made to steward the things God has entrusted to us by following Him.
To do otherwise will ruin our health, but if we allow God to be in control of the outcomes in our lives, we will "glow with health" and "vibrate with life":
"Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don't try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for God's voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he's the one who will keep you on track. Don't assume that you know it all. Run to God! Run from evil! Your body will glow with health, your very bones will vibrate with life!" (Prov. 3:5-8, MSG).
Are you ready to allow hand over to God everything you think you have to control? What are those things? Why do you continue to hang onto them when you know beyond a shadow of a doubt you can't control the outcome anyway? Are you ready to find time to rest in Him and allow Him to carry the load for you?
I've given up control, and I'm learning to rest in Him, but it's not a one-time event. I find I am daily having to give up control of some things again. God always patiently receives them back each time. Eventually, I decide it's a welcome relief and a sweet rest to have Him be in control of every single part of me.
Teresa Shields Parker is a wife, mother, business owner, life group leader, speaker and author of Sweet Grace: How I Lost 250 Pounds and Stopped Trying to Earn God's Favor and Sweet Grace Study Guide: Practical Steps to Lose Weight and Overcome Sugar Addiction and Sweet Freedom. Get a free chapter of her memoir on her blog at Teresa Shields Parker.com. Connect with her there or on her Facebook page or Twitter.
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