So many times in my life I felt that I needed to be in control. I had to control everything to ensure that I no longer felt hurt, sadness, abandonment, loss or whatever else it was that I was dealing with at the time. I found that the more I tried to control my life the more my Expectations increased. I expected more from others and I certainly expected more from myself. I often times held “unrealistic” expectations and I chased what the world taught me to chase with a vengeance. I expected things to be a “certain” way and if they did not turn out the way I “expected” then I had dashed hopes. I found myself riding a vicious roller Coaster that never seemed to end. My expectations increased as my need for control increased and when I felt out of control, I felt hopeless. What a terrible way to live!
As I look back (hindsight is always 20/20) I can just see what a broken system I was functioning in. The world’s system. Be more. Do more. Control more. Expect more. If you aren’t “this” or you haven’t achieved “that” then you aren’t good enough. This unfortunately is a system that MANY people function in day to day and more importantly, it’s a FALSE system that many people build their entire lives on. Their expectations increase, their demands increase but their “fruit” doesn’t seem to increase. This system is quite opposite of what God’s word teaches. Our gracious God gave us a system for living that allows us to release expectation, release control and literally experience the FULLNESS of all that He has for us! How amazing this is!
God teaches that we ARE enough in Him. All we have to do is obey God and leave the consequences to Him. He opens the door to us to have a deep personal relationship with Him. We can bring our prayers, wishes, dreams, hopes and goals before Him so that He can filter what HIS best is for us. He wants to be an active part of our life (our DAY TO DAY walk) no matter how small it may seem. It is a system built on LOVE. No demands, no control, no expectations, no contingencies, just pure unconditional unadulterated LOVE. If you could only for a fraction of a second feel His arms around you, His warm embrace, His great love for you, you would know and it would bring you to tears.
He GAVE so that we could receive all that He has for us but it takes us leaving behind the worldly system and embracing His system. As it says in Psalm 34:4, “I sought the Lord and He delivered me from all my fears”. God is our deliverer and our great Healer and I strongly believe that He wants us to be so JOYFUL and so full of Him that we have no concept of fear, control or lacking.
Where does a need for control stem from? Fear. Fear of failure, fear of loss or even fear of not measuring up. Fear rears its ugliness in many different ways but God says in Isaiah 41:10 “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
When I finally stopped trying to make things work my way and I accepted Gods best for my life, things changed. My need to control dissipated and my expectations were released. I experienced what I lovingly term “DEEP BELLY JOY”. I am able to live by His system for my life and while I am human and will continue to make mistakes as long as I breath, I know there is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus. I know He loves me, He forgives me and if I need to be lovingly corrected, I will grow from it. I love how God can use each and every thing for His goodness and glory. No matter how ugly or vile it may seem, God can turn ashes to beauty. He can restore our lives and help us GROW from the things the enemy sent to kill and destroy.
Many of the things that once “owned” me God stripped me of. He stripped everything that blocked my vision of Him and I pray that you can learn the lessons I did without having to go through the stripping process but if you do just know, God is cupping you in His hands. His plans for you are great and His love for you is great. Let Him do His work because only goodness will come of it. I look back at some of my toughest times (which weren’t that long ago) and I thank God for unanswered prayers and intervening no matter how uncomfortable it was at the time. When we are most uncomfortable, God is usually doing His greatest works in us.
Learning to let Jesus take the wheel can be one of the toughest things to do in the beginning but trust me, you get really comfy as a passenger! He replaces that which was lost and He restores that which was broken. He controls so that you no longer have to. Your identity is not in this world. It is not based on how people treat you, what they do to you, how they talk to you. Your identity is not in your job, your home or the car you drive. Your identity is not in the numbers on your paycheck or in the clothes you wear. Your identity is in Him and Him alone. I pray that you grasp this concept early on and realize how wildly loved you are. Let go and “let God” in your life and open yourself up to a world you can’t even begin to imagine.
My prayers are for you to experience this deeply intimate, amazing and breathtaking relationship with our loving Father. The Creator of all things and the one who knew YOU before you were even born. His plans for you are far greater than what you may see right now.