10/18/2018 4 Comments
Wellness Check: Control
A Self-Evaluation + Self-Reflection Through Journal Entries
It’s time to get real.
My recent blog posts have been fun + full of adventure, activity, awe but something has been pressing on my heart for some time now that I feel like needs sharing. It’s time for me to be honest with myself, and in order to do that I need to allow my heart to be vulnerable + raw so that I can have some accountability in my life, from myself as a self-reminder, as well as from others around me who care about my well-being.
So here it is. These are some journal entries I have had over the past year or so compiled into a single post, in a somewhat coherent fashion. Please feel free to leave a comment or email me separately if you have any questions, reactions, concerns, advice.
I am fully aware of the surfacing lifestyle pattern I am living that is contrary to a life with God. my flesh longs for self-dependence, self-will, self-sufficiency. I don’t know why I continually struggle with wanting to know everything for the future + wanting to control every aspect of my life. I don’t know why I can’t fully trust my God who has great plans for me—plans that exceed what I could ever imagine (Ephesians 3:20) + that He will undoubtedly bring to completion (Philippians 1:6). I want to stop depending on my own limited view, knowledge, resources, ability + rely fully, completely, wholeheartedly on Him. I want to let go of my own notions + simply surrender. Lord, forgive me of my desire to plan my own steps. help me to focus my mind on your faithfulness, power, wisdom, creativity + lean on your guidance + plans for my life.
this obsession with gaining control has profound effects on seeing, hearing, being with Jesus.
it’s ironic that I continually seek to have control when it only creates more stress + worry for myself. I can easily be free of this weighty burden if I just let go of my grip and give it over to God, trusting Him to handle the reins. His ways are always better than mine even when I don’t want to believe it or quite understand it (Jeremiah 29:11, Isaiah 55:8-9, Proverbs 3:5-6).
it's ironic that I continually seek to have control when it is only an illusion. I know full + well that it is unattainable for me to grasp because God is in total control, yet I’m still so persistent in chasing after it, to the point of neglecting other priorities.
last night I was brought down to my knees in prayer with the Father. I am aware + appalled at my sin, so I admitted my faults to God. He overwhelmed me with reassurance. this struggle has been impossible for me to get past because I have been fighting it alone rather than through His strength (John 15:5, Luke 1:37, 18:27, Philippians 4:13). I am returning to the Father with arms wide open so that He will bring me back + restore me (Jeremiah 15:19), amplifying His great power through my weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9). the process of purging this from my life is lengthy, difficult, painful but God is severing my dependence on these things so that I can be made whole + well + mature in Him. through this process, God is crafting my testimony + through my testimony, others will also hear of His grace, goodness, glory + be drawn near to Him (2 Corinthians 1:3-7).
the enemy is pretty crafty in the lies that he tells me (John 8:44, Genesis 3:1). and often, it’s really difficult for me not to believe them. he knows my weakest points—even the ones I’m unaware of—and he attacks. I see it as one of those National Geographic, Planet Earth type of scenes where the predatory animal goes in for the youngest, slowest, weakest of the prey they’re after.
Satan attacks the Christians who are growing in their faith, knowledge, love of Christ and he aims to pull them away by using whatever means he can through confusion + lies. confusion yields a realm of blurriness to what we know to be true about God + the lies bring a world of darkness. fortunately, light exposes truth, and that light has come in the form of Jesus Christ (John 8:12, John 12:35, Psalm 27:1, 1 John 1:5) who brings all darkness to light, and declares what is true + trustworthy.
I’ve somehow lost the ability to have real + honest conversations with others around me either out of my own introverted nature, or more often than not, because of the constant chaos + noise around us that begs for our time + attention away, making genuine conversation or sitting in stillness difficult to attain. time and time again I’ve had the conversation role play in my head of asking my parents to take me to visit a therapist. and every time the thought has crossed my mind has been when I was in prayer with God. somehow it’s just now occurred to me that God IS my therapist. He is my healer (Psalm 147:3), my comforter (2 Corinthians 1:3-4), my source of peace (John 14:27, John 16:33). He is my Father, my Leader, my all-accessible, always-available Counselor. undoubtedly God places other mentors and helpers in my life, but no person on this Earth can supply me with the guidance, grace, comfort, contentment as He can. no person can ever come close to replacing the gift that is my relationship with the Lord. I need Him in my high, mountain top moments and I need Him when I am at my lowest, struggling with the desires of my heart + the thoughts in my mind. He already knows every bit of my inner workings (Psalm 139) so there is nothing to hold back or hide from. He won’t be surprised or think of me differently or be scared away by what I bring to the table, but offers me His open + loving ears, arms, heart. in His presence, I am in a place of complete openness + vulnerability.
10/18/2018 07:31:15 am
10/18/2018 08:04:55 am
“Do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?” (Luke 12:22-26)
10/18/2018 08:11:48 pm
You're such an extraordinary young Christian woman. God has blessed you and has great plans for your life. I always enjoy reading your blog because God has given you a gift - the ability to express yourself with words in a very special way along with many other creative talents (like cooking and photography).
Meemaw and Pappaw
10/26/2018 01:32:50 pm
How gratifying and inspiring to receive you latest blog and know that you are already discovering the path of happiness, solace and "rest" in completely entrusting yourself to the Lordship of our Savior. In your transparent revelation of your struggle with wanting to control much of the outcomes of your plans with your noble goals, you clearly showed what mankind has had in his fallen nature since he was created - pride, selfishness, doubting God. self reliance! All of us can relate to how Paul had his inner conflict with this same problem in Romans 7:14-25. We fall into this trap of duty to achieve with "our" abilities, obedience and timetable rather than desiring to have our Lord in control with His purpose and will at work. As you truly trust Him to enable you through the power of His Spirit to attain those goals with needed planning, guidance, discipline and wisdom, you will eventually learn to rest in Him and release your control, but allow Him to be actively at work in these plans. The Lord has to show us through circumstances, some often requiring brokenness of how much we really need Him to be in control. Otherwise, we put such tremendous pressure on ourselves. He really wants to bear the "yokes" (hardships, trials, difficulties, disappointments) in our lives as His children. If we are too busy trying to find the solutions ourselves, we miss the blessing of knowing/seeing His sovereign power at work. One of the greatest levels of maturity in your walk with the Lord is to rely less on yourself (independence) and commit more to a steadfast dependence on Him. Only then can you have the strength to continue on the path of reaching those desired outcomes with your plans. He wants more than anything to know that you seek Him and His righteousness which will give Him His due honor and glory not only for you, but also before others to see (Matthew 6:33). In Proverbs 16:9 and Psalms 138:8 we are reminded that God is really the One who is sovereign in our outcomes. Yes, we make our plans, but He alone has the power, knowledge and awareness of all that concerns us to see those plans become a reality. We literally are "laid bare" before Him (Heb. 4:13)in everything concerning our lives and motives. The secret to a happy Christian life is knowing that God's plans for you are good (Jeremiah 29:11, Romans 8:28) and He will never forsake you in achieving what He has ordained and gifted you to be able to do for His glory. The whole purpose of our creation is to bring Him this due praise with our lives, talents, time, resources and desires. There is an old chorus that we used to sing many years ago that said, "I'm learning to LEAN on Jesus". It seems that you are at this point of not only leaning on Jesus, but gradually resting in His control as you are hidden in His righteousness with the indwelling Holy Spirit to be your constant Helper. We commend you for this very important and necessary step in your continuing maturation as a Christian. May He always increase in your life as you decrease in your self will to help Him do what only He can and wants to do for and with you.
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