Pastor of Griggs in Greenville, SC. I write about the gospel, the church, and the soul. 

Control, Control, Control

Control, Control, Control


God is in control.

However, God has lent us some control to steward. In Genesis, he tells Adam to take dominion over the earth, meaning he has some measure of control over creation but not ultimate control over the universe.

It's easy in our human nature to forget that we have some control but not ultimate control. Thus, when circumstances that we cannot control arise, we get anxiety and start seeking the position of ultimate control, rather than the One with ultimate control.

This makes us control freaks, driving everyone around us nuts. We also over stimulate ourselves trying to nail down what we'd do in the millions of possible outcomes of a given circumstance.

When I'm anxious, I will go to great lengths to gain some semblance of ultimate control. Sometimes, I can obtain a sense of safety, but it's always fleeting, as another uncontrollable circumstance will arrive at my doorstep soon and I'll have to strive against the odds again.

When will strivings cease? When we humble ourselves.

"Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you." - 1 Peter 5:6

Humbling ourselves means naming what we're trying to control but cannot. So, look at your circumstances and pinpoint what you absolutely cannot control. Then, use prayer as a means to sit under the mighty hand of God, a hand with strength to control what you cannot, and "give him permission" to take control in whatever way he see's fit.

Pray something like this...

"God, if you in your wisdom can create the world, send your son to save me, and prepare an eternal home for me without me doing anything, I'm sure you can take control of this circumstance in such a way that does me good."

A season of waiting will come next. You will have to wait for that "proper time" the verse speaks of. This will be very difficult for your flesh, but will become easier as you gradually stop trying to will things to work out.

Finally, God will exalt you! Ingrain this into your brain, God uses his control to exalt, not to destroy. This is the gospel. He could have destroyed you already, instead through the cross and resurrection, he raised you from spiritual death to eternal life. He could have destroyed you during your last difficulty, instead you learned something and changed. This is what will happen every time until he exalts you to his physical presence.

Being a control freak won't help with anything. Resting under God's control can get you through everything.

Catastrophizing 101

Catastrophizing 101

Name Your Fear

Name Your Fear