Giving Up Control

Giving up Control

I almost always feel the overwhelming need to figure out all. the. things. Now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. Not next year (when some of these un-named things are actually happening). But NOW. Before I sleep. Before I relax. Before I can focus on the here & now.

And yes, it is in part because that’s just how God made me. Type A. Planner. Organizer. People please-er. List maker.

But God is challenging me to see it’s also because I don’t fully trust him. I don’t want to bother him with things I can obviously (not) figure out quicker/better/more completely than He can. 

In my last post I don’t want to be comfortable I said that God and I were wrestling with some things.

Time to be vulnerable. I prayed and asked “What God?  What are you asking me to lay down? What do I hold more valuable than you? What is my Anything?” And he answered. Swiftly. Through emails, conversations with friends, devotionals, music, and his word. It’s the planning. The putting order over loving God and loving people.  The false sense of control I feel over my life when all the “i’s” are dotted and the “t’s” are crossed.

My need for control is controlling my need for God and my obedience to his calling and his command.

Control. That’s what we are wrestling about. He wants me to give it up. And Type A girl here…well, it makes my stomach churn when I consider the chaos and un-orderliness that will ensue.

But the girl who is starting to see the beauty in letting other people in and running recklessly towards God? The girl who wants to love Jesus and love others so recklessly, Jesus can show up each and every day and shine HIS glory and HIS goodness and HIS faithfulness and HIS provision?  She’s all for it.

Because the honest truth is – I don’t have it figured out. I am a mess. A broken, sinful, mess. And God loves me. I can plan and create order and pretend like I have it all under control. But that isn’t who I want to be. I don’t want to ignore Gods calling and commands for the sake of a life packaged with a pretty, neatly tied bow on top. Not for my friends. My family. My husband. My co-workers. It’s not real and it doesn’t proclaim the gospel. We don’t have time for that, friends.

I’ve been reading through Philippians the past few weeks. And it is exactly what I needed to hear (amen).

  • Dying to myself daily – Phil. 1:21 “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”
  • Counting others more worthy than me – Phil. 2:3-4 “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.”
  • Obedience – Phil. 2:7-8 “but [Christ] emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”
  • Living with the purpose of advancing the gospel – Phil. 2:15 “that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world…”

The time I spend creating order in my life?  It’s self-serving. It’s prideful. It can be so very helpful and I do see it as a gift – when it isn’t consuming. But when it is consuming like it has been lately? When it takes priority over what God is calling me to? Well, it really gets in the way of a manner of life worthy of the gospel. {Philippians 1:27}

It’s time to give up my need for order and control and to simply love & serve God and others: recklessly, tangibly and passionately.

Does it mean letting life become utter chaos? Absolutely not. But first, God. Even before my neatly planned, beautifully orchestrated day (that never goes as planned anyways). I’m not trying to rid myself of who God made me to be. But sometimes dying to myself and keeping God at the front of this crazy life means giving up the control my mind so desperately craves and letting God work through me. 

This incredible weight that keeps pressing on my heart? It’s not neat. It’s not orderly. It might be a vision for the near future or it might be for 10 years down the road. Although hubs and I are well aware it is something God has placed in both of our hearts, we have barely had the space to really let it sink in and process what this looks like for our family. But the first step is coming.

And after that first step comes a lot of things that from this side – look practically and emotionally impossible. Lots of things “we can’t do.”

But you know what I keep hearing from God? “You can’t do it. But I can.”

And that – that is exactly where I want to be. Our job is obedience. God’s job is everything else.

We don’t have the time. But we can make time and God can carry us.
We don’t have the resources. But we can make sacrifices to make room for God’s provision.
We want to protect our marriage. So we keep God at the center.
We can’t make this work logistically. But God is the master planner.
It will make this season in our lives more difficult. But with God all things are possible.

Take me deeper, Lord. Lead me where my trust is without borders. Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander.

So, maybe God says wait. Maybe this is for the future, when the time is more ideal than now. But maybe it’s not. Maybe the time will never be right and God is just waiting for our first step out in obedience. We are prayerfully seeking his guidance as to how we can serve Him well.

Will you pray with us? For wisdom and discernment about the future. For space to think and pray amidst our crazy. For hubs and I to be united and on the same page as we press on towards the goal. And for clear direction and very obvious closed doors if this weight on our hearts is not what God has for us in our current circumstances.


One thought on “Giving Up Control

  1. Hi Jessica! Love this post. It really was a needed reminder and challenge. I love order and often prioritize maintaining it over being with Jesus or obeying his Spirits prompting. Makes me think of when Jesus gently rebuked Martha. ““Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”” ‭‭Luke‬ ‭10:41-42‬ ‭Oh how I need to trust Him and choose what is better over having control and order. Good word! Thanks for sharing. Thanks for the “like” too. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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