Control freak is such a strong word. I prefer to describe myself as a type-A personality. I love my “to-do” list. It is more like an external hard-drive of my memory bank. I swear I would be lost without it. My daily routine is pretty repetitive and predictable. This helps me focus and be productive. I plan my day, my meals, my workouts, and everything else in between. I believe this is a good discipline most of the time. But, it can also be a stronghold for me at times. I like to be in control. It feels good and secure. And if you’re honest, you probably like being in control too. I don’t like the emotions being out of control triggers. Typically, the more out of control I feel, the more emotional I become internally and externally. My thought pattern usually goes something like this, if I can get this situation to align back up with my plan I wont feel all these uncontrollable emotions and I will be back in control of things. In reality, I cannot control anything except the way I respond to these circumstances. But, control isn’t based on reality. It is based on feelings that aren’t always true.
The problem with our feelings is they come from our heart. We can’t trust our heart. Jeremiah 17:9, “The heart is more deceitful than all else & is desperately sick; who can understand it?” Feelings can & will lead us astray if we aren’t careful. They don’t always tell the truth. Our perception can make us feel a certain way that is not based on reality. Let me give you an example. Some days I look in the mirror & see a severely over weight person. I feel fat. I feel overweight. I feel ugly. Is that the truth? No, but I feel that way in that moment. Why? Who knows?? I might have had a bad day or someone said something to me that hurt my feelings. Whatever the reason, it’s not based on reality. It is based on my untrustworthy feelings. You just can’t trust those suckers! So, if I feel in control of my life, does that mean I am in control? No! It’s pseudo control. Satan deceives us to believe that we are controlling things because we feel in control. The reality is that God is actually in control. My day may go according to plan, but that doesn’t mean I controlled the outcome. God allowed it to go that way. He is the One in ultimate control. I was never in control to begin with, but when I believe my feelings of being in control, I am being deceived. It is a lie from the enemy. Satan does not want me to trust God or depend on Him. He casts doubt about God & wants me to trust my heart & depend on myself. Why? Because Satan knows the truth about God, he knows God is good, God has my best interest, & God’s plan is the best. Satan doesn’t want us to know the truth. That kind of truth sets people free. Freedom from anxiety, worry, uncertainty, the unknown, and ultimately, freedom from being a control freak which causes so many of us to live in fear. The only way to know the truth about God is to trust Him fully, let go of control, & willingly surrender our plans, hopes, dreams, desires, & fears to Him. Only then will we come to know Him in a deeper way that leads to a deeper trust & greater faith in Him. Trust Him to work things out according to His plan, believing in faith that it is the best plan & for our good even when it doesn’t feel good.
My circumstances haven’t aligned up with my plan lately. I was given something that I poured my heart & soul into. I loved this gift very much, but it has been taken away for reasons unknown to me. My emotions have triggered feelings of anger, insecurity, & fear. I don’t feel secure or in control anymore. I am angry because this thing I invested so much time & energy into has been taken away. I am afraid & fearful of what’s ahead because I don’t know if it will go my way or be for my good. The thing that got taken away was good & now it’s gone. This was not a part of my plan. It feels pretty bad. I kind of feel like God messed up, forgot about me, or doesn’t have good plans for my future. What if my definition of good is not the same as God’s? Why would God take something away from me that was good? Why would God take something back that He gave me? Maybe it is good, but now it’s not good for me. Maybe, the good thing did its job, but now I have to let it go in order to move forward. Maybe, God doesn’t feel so good right now. Does that mean God isn’t good? No! The truth is God is always good despite what I feel. But, I have to believe the truth about God & trust Him instead of my feelings. My plan is not bad, but apparently it is no longer good for me. I think I know best, but that is a lie. God knows best. The second part of the verse about the heart is in Jeremiah 17:10, “I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, even to give to each man according to his ways, according to the results (fruit) of his deeds.” He knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows our true intentions, our character, & what is in our heart. He knows best. He knows things that we don’t know about the present & the future. He knows if our character can handle the desires of our heart, if we are ready to receive them, & He knows if these things are actually good for us. I do not know for certain what’s best for me. I only think I know based on how I feel right now. If there is something God isn’t allowing, it is probably not good for us. If He has taken something away, maybe it was time to let it go, or it was going to cause us harm. If we trust our feelings that say this is not fair, God doesn’t know best, God has forgotten me, or God is not good, those feelings will lead us astray. We may try to make our plan happen and end up with a lot of regrets. Or, end up in a season filled with anger, isolation, & discontentment. I’ve been there. It isn’t fun. It is actually a lot harder to be angry & in the self-pity mindset than to go into the unknown with God & trust Him. The truth is God is in control & when life feels out of control, He is still in control. We can trust God with whatever it is that isn’t going our way or feeling good because He is always good.
Where are you trying to control things in your life?
Where is your heart trying to lead you astray?
What lies are you believing?
What lies do you need to replace with the truth? Compare your thoughts/feelings with the truth…Rebuke the lies with the truth of God’s word.