Did you know that I once brought my own forks to China? It’s true!
A few years ago, my husband, Phil, was invited to teach at Liaoning Normal University in Dalian, China. While I was so excited about this amazing, once-in-a-lifetime trip, I also realized I had a problem.
I cannot eat with chopsticks, and I knew forks would probably be hard to find. So, I packed my own forks—after all, I gotta be in control of my meals!
But meals are not the only area of life where I like control. Oh, the truth is, a lot of times, I create my own stress just by trying to be in charge of everything.
Maybe you can relate. Do you seek to be in control, perhaps sometimes even more than you seek to know God?
Let me tell you about my friend Angie:
When Angie was pregnant with their fourth daughter, Audrey, they learned that their baby girl would not survive outside the womb. During those difficult days of her pregnancy, Angie began blogging as a way to keep friends and family updated. Her blog, Bring the Rain, became a way to share her heart.
A decade later, Angie continues to share her own ups and downs in an effort to encourage others in their faith. She didn’t grow up a believer in Christ, so now her big thing is to make the Bible feel accessible.
For Angie—who loves knowledge and the answers it can bring—it was a struggle to seek God more than she sought to control. Oh, I know how she feels, don’t you? But, over the years, God has taught her what it means to posture herself toward Him. And she’s sharing how you can do the same.
Here are three questions, based on our conversation, to help you seek God more than you seek to control.
3 Questions to Help You Seek God More Than You Seek Control
- Am I settling or seeking? Control settles, while faith seeks. In Acts 3:1-10, we read the story of a lame beggar at the temple gate. This man just wanted to get through each day by collecting silver and gold. But when Peter and John encounter him, they offer him something greater: healing. Are you ever like this man? Do you settle for less from God? This lesser thing may be control, knowledge, or even religion. Yet God wants you to look Him in the eye, see that His gaze is on you, and seek the better things He has for you.
- Do I feel exhausted or satisfied? Control exhausts, while a growing relationship with God satisfies. In Genesis, Eve had already been given love, but it wasn’t enough for her. She wanted the control that the knowledge of the tree brought. Yet, look at what happened immediately after—she and Adam felt shame and they hid from God. God ends up asking where they are, but not because He’d lost them. He wanted to know what the posture of their hearts was. Control seeks knowledge of God, instead of a relationship with God. If you are feeling exhausted from trying to be in control, let it go. You are already loved deeply by God, find your satisfaction in Him.
- Do I demand answers or am I willing to trust? Control wants answers, while love trusts. When you walk through incredible loss, you may want to be able to explain it or package it nicely. But, instead, you can “rebrand” what it means as a Christian to walk through loss by calling things like they are and trusting God with your feelings. God’s love is much more powerful than any answer you could ever get.
When we seek God and sacrifice our agendas, we may not feel like we’re in control. But we will feel loved and carried by God—just like Angie has.
So, remember, whatever you are dealing with, you can do all things through Christ who gives you strength!
This post originally appeared on JenniferRothschild.com and was republished with permission.
Jennifer Rothschild has written 14 books, including the bestseller Lessons I Learned in the Dark and Me, Myself, and Lies. She’s been featured on Good Morning America and Dr. Phil and is the founder of Fresh Grounded Faith events. Jennifer became blind at age 15 and now helps others live beyond limits.