Ever feel like things are getting out of hand? Your stress level getting out of hand? Have a difficult relationship putting your pants in a bunch? I’d like to help you with that.
No, I’m not going to do your work for you, or have that conversation you need to have, or even play rainforest music and give you a massage. Here’s what I can do though. I can change your perspective.
Did you know all the stress your feeling is based on an illusion? That all the weight you’re carrying isn’t helping you and you don’t really even need to carry it? In fact, your stress level is not only decreasing your quality of life, it’s actually shortening your life. For what? For something that we think we can master but actually masters us.
What are we talking about? Control. More accurately, the illusion of control. There’s so many things in this life we thing we’re in control of. How we live. Our job. Our spouse. Our kids. Our income. Our standard of living. Our preferences. Our relationships. On and on. We think if we can just work hard enough, do and say the right things, if we just push the right buttons things will work out like we want.
It’s just not true.
That’s why we’re so devastated when our lack of control is so completely revealed to us. When we lose our job. When a hurricane wipes out not just our house, but our entire neighborhood or city. When someone else can ruin our reputation. When our kids do things we’ve told them a hundred times not to.
We can barely control ourselves. We say thing we know we shouldn’t. We do things we even while telling ourselves not to do it. We get emotional and make choices that come back to haunt us. Anger, desire, apathy.
Our illusion is strengthen by the times our exercise of control pays off. I meet that deadline. I navigate that relationship. I make the hard call. The more I exert control and it works in my favor, the more I believe that I can really master my destiny.
But it’s not true. There are things I can manage, but I’m never in control of them.
When I finally admit I don’t have control, you know what I experience?
That’s right. Freedom is the ability to pour yourself heart and soul into something and not be responsible for being in control of it. I’m free to give everything I have to make it the best. I’m free to walk away. I’m free to trust Jesus for the outcome. My job is faithfulness and dedication. God’s job is success.
This isn’t a release of responsibility. This doesn’t mean we don’t measure, evaluate or strategize. What it means is I recognize that ultimately someone else is in control. Jesus. And when I can live there, I can enjoy success but not tie my self-worth to it. I can appreciate the good things in life without being dependent on it for my happiness.
My illusion of control is a bad master. My belief that God has gifted me uniquely and called me to give my best gives me peace and security in me and whatever I do.
What are you trying to control? How strong is your illusion you can master everything in your life? How willing are you to really trust God with your whole life, not just what you think you can’t handle? Give him your whole life and discover what freedom really is. You’ll be amazed at the difference.