If you had asked me if I liked being in control my response would have quickly been NO! Even my temperament says that I don’t have a desire to control myself or others. I’ve been talking with others and reading some stuff recently that God has used to open my eyes to ways I do control.
I am reading a book with a friend titled “Grace for the Good Girl”. There’s a part in the book where the author describes a situation she encountered at a local bookstore. She watched a little girl trying to decide if she should purchase a package of pretty pencils or an activity book. Her father told her she could get one thing. She was very torn about what she should get. The author could tell that the girl really wanted the pencils but she also really wanted to do what she “should” do so she asked her father for his opinion. He told her it was her decision but he also explained that the pencils required trimming and wouldn’t last as long as the activity book. Again he said that it was her choice though. She felt that her dad wanted her to get the book. The author put herself in the little girls shoes and thought about what she would do. She decided that she probably would have gotten the activity book just to make sure her dad was pleased with her decision but deep down would’ve been sad and blamed her dad in her mind for this sadness. The author kept watching to see what happened. The little girl walked out with pencils! The author was so proud of her but it also brought out shame and guilt for how she made decisions in life.
This is a perfect example of how I “quietly hide” control. There’s a few things going on here. I don’t want any problems. I don’t want anyone upset with me or to think I am stupid, incompetent, etc. I control how they see me but inside I’m sad. And one of the biggest things…….I don’t think I’m important enough for my desires and opinions to be special or more important than someone else’s. That’s what it really boils down to. But I don’t really want that known so I just “control” how things play out. I would’ve definitely walked out with the activity book.
I’m chewing on all of this with God right now. He says that I am special. He says that I am worthy. He gives me desires. He killed my old self and made me new. That is done. That is true. I just don’t always trust in that truth. That’s when the shame creeps in and I instead start believing that I’m not enough.
The only way to recognize these lies for what they are is to know and trust in the truth. I can just keep telling myself to stop. Then that just reminds me that I’m a failure when I can’t and the cycle continues. The only thing that combats lies and darkness is truth and light. Letting God tell me truths and experiencing them little bits at the time brings in the light. I have to know the truth before I see the lies.
We are in and out of valleys. I’m not always wallowing in this. When I trust that God is delighted in me and that I am worthy then I experience Him and others in a different way. I recently had a birthday. Neil kept asking what I wanted to do and really wanted it to be all about me. I could have easily bought into the lie that I’m not worthy and chose things that I thought he wanted so he would be happy. Instead, I experienced the love he was giving me by enjoying my favorite things. I experienced God’s love for me through Neil. We both enjoyed each other. There was no hidden control. There was only freedom to love and experience love.
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