I’m reminded weekly as a pastor that life is messy. Sometimes, life seems like a series of calculated steps to remind you of one thing: you are not in control. We can fight for control, think we’re in control, and even live our lives under the illusion that we’re in control. But then, a messy situation rears its head right dab in the middle of your life.
This was not the way it was supposed to be.
And, instead of releasing control to Jesus, we often double-down on maintaining control:
I’ll get it right next time.
Friends, Jesus came in the flesh to show you a better way.
We mistakenly think that peace and control have a direct causal relationship: more control = more peace. The more that I can control my life, my family, and my environment, the more that peace will flood my heart. We are hesitant (and even terrified) of trusting anybody outside of ourselves. After all, this is my life, and I better get it right!
The irony is that our love of control (okay, being a “control freak”) is actually the gateway to living a life of constant pressure. And stress. And living under the coming rain cloud of potential failure. What if I can’t keep all these plates in the air?
That is why faith is at the heart of the Christian life. Faith is resting in the refuge that God provides. Faith is a (childlike) trusting in the goodness of God. God is for me, not against me.
I experience a release and freedom at the level of my soul when I recognize (and remember) that Jesus truly desires that I experience the fullness of joy.
Take this verse to heart: “These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.” (John 15:11)
What if I could exchange the joy of Jesus for my love of control? Perhaps that would make all the difference in my life. Perhaps Jesus could give me exactly what I have been searching to find all of my life. Perhaps joy is to be found “in Jesus”. Think about it.
Grateful to be with you in this journey towards joy,