The definition of control is: power to direct or determine; a relation of constraint of one entity (thing or person or group) by another; exercise authoritative control or power over; lessen the intensity of; temper; hold in restraint; hold or keep within limits; the activity of managing or exerting control over something; operate: handle and cause to function; dominance: the state that exists when one person or group has power over another; manipulate: control (others or oneself) or influence skillfully, usually to one's advantage; restraint: discipline in personal and social activities. These were just a few of the definitions I found.
The other morning in my quiet time with the Lord. I heard Him say, "Listen. Hear. Accept. Listen to Me. Hear Me. Accept Me." It has actually taken me a few days to reflect on what He revealed to me.
We spent the 4th with my family in Decatur. I started to notice that I was telling or asking Leighton to do certain things. Then after I would ask him, I would think to myself, "Why did I just ask him to do that when I could have done it, or he already knew how to do it." After about a day (or two) of doing this, he politely said, "Allison, you have been quite full of instruction." It stopped me in my tracks. I apologized and asked him to help me realize when I was instructing. I hate that I do this. I HATE it. Hate is a strong word. But, I do. The very thing I hate, I do. Why? Why Lord?
Control. This was His answer to me. Ok, Lord. I will listen. I will hear. I will accept. Control has had reign over me for a long time. It is almost innate. I do it, even when I don't realize it. But, my sin of control is being revealed to me a lot lately. The power to direct or determine another person's way somehow feels a void in me. Exercising this control over others takes my eye's off my own self. Why? Because I don't want to have to examine my heart and see what is wrong with it. I would rather exercise control over another and not look myself.
But, control doesn't stop there. I exercise control over pretty much "all" areas of my life. Husband, children, money, food and time. There are more, but these are the "big" ones. Which leads me to another "c" word. Comfort. I control to feel comfortable. Yep. That is me. I came to realize this on my trip to Alabama. I don't like to be out of my comfort zone. Where I feel safe. I feel safest sometimes at home with my little family. I feel comfortable there. I feel secure there. My anxiety creeps up on me when I feel like I am not in control. Not full blown panic attacks now. Close, but thankfully not the I can't breathe kind. When I start to feel anxious now, the Lord gently guides me back to Him. I am reminded of His Word. His Truth. His Promise. And I HAVE TO BELIEVE IT!
I have to listen and look for Him. I have to hear Him. I have to accept what He reveals to me. I have to be open to His instruction and guidance. I can not ever be "perfect". No matter how hard I try. It WILL never happen until I am in Heaven. Not here. There is NOTHING perfect on this earth and as hard as I try, it will never be. I have to accept this. I have to accept who the Lord created me to be. I have to not be scared of examining myself and finding the sin in my life. The Only One who can change me is Him.
1 Corinthians 10:13 says, "No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it."
Please forgive me for wanting to have control over all areas of my life. Help me to listen, hear and accept You. Help me to not be afraid of not being in control. Help me realize that You created me just the way You wanted too and that is enough. Please help me to accept the love You have for me. Please help me accept the love from other people in my life. Let Your love come through me. Fill me with Your love so that I can love others as You have loved me.
In Jesus' Name, Amen