If you’re ever driving in stressful conditions, the last person you want driving your car is my grandma (sorry Nana, I know you’re reading this). My family likes to poke fun at her, and just this past Mother’s Day weekend they were at it again. I don’t know how exactly it came up, but my family’s impersonation of her driving an out-of-control car had us all laughing hysterically. They say she just throws her hands up and starts screaming and praying to God; however, my grandma claims they are just being overdramatic, she never lets go of the wheel. Regardless, we had a good time laughing about it.
Practically speaking, letting go of the steering wheel is probably the last thing anyone should do when a car spins out of control. Imagine driving down an icy road, when all of a sudden the tires start to spin and the back end of the vehicle starts moving in a completely different direction; now, what do you do? Certainly not let go of the wheel! Who knows where the car will steer itself if left to the forces of nature.
But the more I thought about it, the more it made me think of my life. What do we do when our life starts to spin out of control and we don’t know what to do? In this particular case, I think it’s a good idea to throw up our hands and surrender the control to Christ. Actually, surrendering to Christ should occur daily, not just when disaster strikes. As we walk, run, saunter, skip, or even crawl through life, do we give God the control daily? Are we throwing our hands up, trusting Him to lead us?
I don’t know about you, but I can confidently say that I want God to have complete control in my life. I want to trust Him completely in ALL things, from the little to the big. But I can also confidently say that this is much easier said than done. I continuously try to hand over the control to Jesus, but then I have my moments where I selfishly snatch it back. I know in my heart that He is much more dependent and reliable in caring for my heart than I am, yet I’m so prone to forget this.
Now back to the car scenario for a minute. What happens if we do let go of the wheel after losing control? Who knows where the car will end up! Maybe by chance all will be well, but there’s also a good chance further disaster will occur; it’s quite a gamble if you ask me. So, what happens if we don’t surrender to Christ after disaster strikes in life? The world is full of lies disguised as comforts that we can sometimes easily turn to. If I buy this new outfit it’ll help lift my spirits up. This alcohol will help me forget for just a little bit. That man/woman will make me feel better. It can be so easy to turn to the “comforts” this world offers, for it’s much less strenuous than surrendering our hurts to Christ. But those comforts? They will eventually fall away or not be enough anymore, and the hole they were supposed to fill will still be there.
It would have been so easy for me to turn away from God in the days following my dads’ death, blaming Him for taking my dad too soon. I could have wallowed in my self-pity endlessly, not letting myself heal. Or I could have said screw you to the world and started making choices that made me feel good in the moment. And I will be honest with you, there were moments were I thought about it. I just wanted something quick to help fill the hole in me. But by the grace of God, I didn’t. The Lord filled me with so much strength, and he placed incredible people in my path that encouraged and loved me. God is more than adequately sufficient to “supply all your need” (Philippians 4:19) when going through deep waters.
I graduated college just over a week ago (woooo!), but now I’m in the “what now?” phase. Of course most of my peers probably had this question answered before graduating, but I like to be different and go against the norm…okay maybe that’s not completely true, but it makes me feel better! Yes, I am 22 years old and a fresh graduate, but no, I have absolutely no idea what I want. I wish I were kidding you right now. I don’t know if I want to continue on with school; sell all my belongings and move across the country; enter some sort of ministry; or just pursue a job. Seriously. No. Clue. And honestly, I’m not really okay with it. It’s not exactly my idea of a good time, but it’s where I’m at right now and I just have to work with it. The thing is, I trust God completely, but the patience thing is where I need a little work. And it’s very obvious that He is using this time to foster that patience in me. That might be exactly His point in this current season, to build some patience within my “hurry on to the next adventure” heart of mine.
But there’s another thought that I’ve been mulling over: it’s not really about me. In a world and culture that is constantly telling me to do what I want and what makes me feel good, my faith tells me the opposite. 1 Thessalonians 4:7 says that God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. I don’t know about you, but I know for a fact that the sinful desires in my heart definitely do not reflect a holy life. I’m not supposed to live a life that pleases me, but rather one in which pleases God.
So the question I ought to be asking myself is: how can I best serve God? This is ultimately why I’m here, right? This is the question I must seek to answer. God has given each of us unique personalities, passions, abilities, and gifts that we are able to use to serve Him. The combination of all of these will lead me to a place in which I can best serve God AND satisfy the desires He places in my heart. I sometimes wish I could just get there now, but there’s a process to it. Cue the cliché, but there’s a reason and season for everything. God is 100% using this time of my life and He has a plan for it.
Each day I must release the control I think I have over my life and relinquish it to a faithful God who sees eternity. Just throw up my hands, pleading with God to take my heart and make it more of His. Not only will this action lead me to a place of complete surrender to the Lord, but also a place in which I find the satisfaction this world will never be able to fulfill.
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. // Romans 12:1-2