If you are a parent you can probably relate to this situation. Getting your kid to do what you want them to do.
Today, I was sitting on our front porch while the kids played outside. One of them caught my attention when he was doing something he and I both knew he wasn't supposed to. I immediately told him to stop doing what he was doing. Being stubborn, he of course hesitated a moment before doing what I asked. I could feel my blood pressure begin to rise as I knew it bothered me that he did not respond the instant I said something. Stopping to gather my thoughts for a second, I wondered why I was getting so worked up. Then the Lord revealed something to me. I noticed the struggle I was feeling for control. I couldn't fully control what my child was going to do, as much as I wish I could of. He probably wanted that control just as much as I did. I began to wonder if this had more to do with me wanting to control my child? Or the fact that I am realizing how much I am not in control of my life at all.
Control is something that can make us feel a false sense of security. If we know we are somehow, we might be able to predict what is next. But that is definitely not how things go. Kids grow up faster than we want them to. Life seems to fly by quicker. Someone makes a decision that we don't like. Events in our world happen that scare us. All these things, and more bring out this tension in our personal lives. We want to be in control, when we are not.
How do we deal with this?
I find that when I struggle with control issues, the biggest thing I can do is this: admit that I am not in control. God is. It's not always easy to remember, especially in the midst of trying situations, but acknowledging it is the first step.
Second, I need to ask the Lord to help me trust him. He is completely faithful, and able to handle all that concerns me. I would be doing myself a huge favor to live in an awareness of his control. Anything that happens in my life is passed through his loving hands first. He is able to take anything that I face, and use it to mold me into the person he wants me to be. Ultimately for his glory, and my best interest.
And third, I need to learn to identify when I am most tempted to try and grab onto control in my life again. In the types of situations that might be scary, or I may not know the end result are areas to be aware of. Knowing this, I can stop and release control over to Jesus again before moving any further with my day.
Above all, there is no reason not to release control of our lives over to Jesus. He is worthy. Everything exists because of him. Nothing happens without him knowing about it. Anxiety, fear, and worry can tempt us to try and hold on to what isn't even under our control in the first place.
Throughout life there will always be the temptation to hold on to control. The question is, who will we let have control?
May we rest in Jesus, and relinquish control over to him.