I actually started this post about a week ago. The message still remains powerful to me today, so I decided to go ahead and finish and publish it. Enjoy.
I heard a snap today! If you think about it, hearing a snap is usually not a positive experience. When you hear the snap of a bone, that's definitely not a good thing. Pain, a trip to the hospital, and weeks of recovery follow pretty quickly after that. In old movies, hearing the snap of a twig outside does not mean that someone you love is on their way to visit. Even snapping one's fingers usually means you're trying to get someone's attention, but it's usually stemming from frustration or you are trying to get someone to stop and listen when they had failed to do so previously. The snapping of gum, if it is not your own, can put you on edge. A snap usually means something is broken, whether it's the silence, a bone, or something else of value.
What I heard today, though, was definitely a positive thing! Although it was in my head, it was as clear as if I had actually picked up a branch and snapped it in half. It was the sound of control being broken.
Something that most people agree on is that no one can have control over our lives unless we let them. That's the free will God has given us. I WANT to reliquish control to my Lord Jesus and no one else, but much of the time, I have it backwards. I think a lot of people can relate. I've been pondering why it is so hard to give control to the God of the universe with a perfect track record, but yet we easily give it to the negative chains in our lives, be it people or experiences.
Dave and I have recently had someone come into the jungle of our lives with a machete, swinging it wildly without care to the havoc, pain, and destruction he has caused. We wanted to grab the machete, make it stop, and bring order back to our family, but we usually only got wounded in the attempt. The source behind the machete remained in hiding and thus became even more in control, only letting himself out long enough to cut once again. His method was cruel and hateful, and he didn't seem to care that he could bring innocent family members and kids down in the process.
One of the most difficult parts to deal with was that it was someone from our beloved church. Not knowing who it was meant looking into faces we have known for years, some we have trusted with some significant baggage, and wondered, "Is it you? Could you have done this? and WHY?"
Now, why would I want to give control over to someone like that? The obvious answer is that I DON'T want to, but when he seems to have all the weapons, then what am I to do? The serenity prayer became a lifeline.
"God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage the change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference." A beautiful prayer that continues with much more truth, but it's this first part that resonates with me.
This is where I heard the snap...when my head as well as my heart finally completelly absorbed the truth of that prayer. As I said earlier, the sound of the snap was something being broken...control was broken! I never really had it, and I was no longer giving it to the wrong person. Freedom! I cannot control him, but I can control my own response. And in this case, the best response is to pray my way through it with family and friends and to put on the full armor of God. If God is for me, who can be against me?
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