I have a serious control problem. My husband and kids will be the first to tell you it is true. I would like to chalk it up to raising three kids, but unfortunately it began way before that. You can ask my mom (smirk here).
Complete control sounds heavenly, but it is so far from it.
Control has its pitfalls – just ask anyone in a leadership role right now.
Control allows me to make choices that I am in charge of – me only. It makes me believe that I have some sort of ruling ability over my environment. This what-seems-amazing skill allows me to mandate what happens all around me. It gives me a false sense of security. Being in charge often does this.
As a teacher, I often do have control over my environment, then walks in that kid that throws things for a loop. Somehow he/she reminds me that one move outside of my control zone can shake up the entire classroom. My world tumbles to the ground, and I have to go back to rework my control back into the situation which takes tremendous time and effort on my part. Regaining control is frustrating, painstaking work.
If I have learned anything through all this COVID-19, it is that control is a facade. You may think you are in control, but you are anything but that.
I may think I am in charge of my world, my household, my business, my classroom, but that is soooo not the case.
Control is not all that it is cracked up to be. Sure you get to make decisions, give advice, and assume leadership, but with that comes the consequences of making the wrong choice. The pain of admitting your decision may have been the wrong one. The exhaustion of building everything all over again, once again, falling into the falsehood that you are in control.
It is a endless cycle of control, lose control, gain control, lose control, gain control.
Control often involves battles. Most likely because control affects others besides ourselves. I make choices that affect others – like a domino effect. Sound familiar? I often tell my students that their choices have consequences. These are not just consequences for themselves, but for others too. Sometimes our choices affect an entire community. We can find ourselves in a bees nest really quick because when we pull control from others, they tend to fight back. Battle after battle after battle. It is never-ending.
So, how do we change this all up? How do we know when we are suppose to be in control and when we are suppose to be a follower? How can we stop this endless cycle that leads to exhaustion and false security?
You know why?
Because we are never in control. God is.
I have spent every morning in prayer since this coronavirus began. I have pulled and tugged God to let me take the reigns. Finally, I realized, He never wants me in control. That is His job.
It takes obedience.
It includes tremendous amounts of prayer.
I have to confess….
I am not in control. I cannot handle the pitfalls of control. I am not equipped to be in control. I have way too much pride to be in control. I am not mentally or physically able to be in control. He is.
This is difficult and uncomfortable for me to say because it requires humility to say it. We are often given the opportunity of being a leader, but in the end, the ultimate leader is God, not us. It is a false title of leadership that we do not own.
1 Peter 5:6-7 Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
We are to be followers of Him. He will lead the way. We are along for the ride and are to be open to what He tells us to do.
Talk about the ultimate lack of control – that is us!
We are here, on this earth, for Him, because of Him. He is in control. We can fight it all we want. We can pretend that we are the leaders, the decision makers, the rulers of our domain, but we clearly are not even anything close to that.
So, let it go. Let Him work through you. He doesn’t make mistakes. His choices are perfect. His leadership is exactly what we need right now.