Monday, June 23, 2014

Taking the Back Seat

Proverbs 19:21

Many are the plans in a person's heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.

Psalms 46:10

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations,
    I will be exalted in the earth.”

I have never been good at taking a back seat. I like to be the one in control. In school I always tried to take the leadership role on group projects- that way I could monitor progress and make sure that everything was done on time and to my standards. I don't even like to sit in the back seat of the car when someone else is driving. If I am not the one behind the wheel, then I at least want to be in the front passenger seat so I have a clear vision of the road, any impending dangers, and the direction that we are going. 

I am sad to say that I often take that same position when it comes to things that I should place in God's hands. Sometimes I find myself a bit uncertain about God's plan for me at a given point in time. I THINK I know what God's will is, but then I find myself second-guessing and thinking that maybe I am reading it all wrong. Sometimes I think that I just know what needs to be done and I step in and try to do it my way.

I suppose that I come by it naturally. Most women that I know like to be in control of things too.

As I was reminded in chapter 3 of Let. It. Go. there is even biblical evidence that being in control is a characteristic shared by many women. 

Let's start with Eve herself, back there in the Garden of Eden God warned Adam "you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die." When the serpent told her that this was not the case and that it would merely open her eyes and make her like God, Eve decided to take control of the situation and eat of the fruit. Then she also offered the fruit to Adam and he ate. We all know the consequences of their actions. 

Eve isn't the only woman who went with her own desires. As Lot, his daughters, and his wife fled Sodom they were instructed not to look back and not to stop. Lot's wife decided that she had to see what was happening and, against instructions, gazed one last time upon Sodom, at which point she was turned into a pillar of salt. 

So..... now I know that there are others out there just like me..... women who like to be the one making the decisions and guiding the action.  What next?

Well....... as I was reading Chapter 3 of Karen Ehman's book there were 2 times that my "light bulb" came on.

I can try and try and try to be in charge so that things will go MY way...... but there will ALWAYS be times when things DON'T work out. At some point there is always going to be a kink in my plan, a fly in my ointment, or someone else who ends up on top. No one single person can get everything that he or she wants. Instead, I need to remember what Psalms 46:10 says. I need to be still and recognize that God has a plan too and that I need to be willing to slip into that back seat and cruise along at his speed and in his direction.

I have been asking and praying the wrong thing..............  Like some of you, no doubt, I have found myself sometimes praying, "Lord, take this from me," or "Lord, solve this problem." On page 53 of chapter 3 the light bulb came on again and let me see that I needed to be saying, "Lord, what are you trying to teach me?" or "Lord, use this to show me how I can be closer to you." 

This brought to mind a hymn from my childhood, "Nearer My God to Thee." Darkness may come, my pillow may be a stone, but God can use those circumstances to help me draw closer to him.... to learn more about his perfectly designed plan for me and for my life.

Listen closely to the words of this sweet hymn. During the coming week, look for opportunities when you can take the back seat and allow God to be the driver. Allow him to reveal his plan and his reason behind that plan. Draw nearer to God and allow him to be in control.

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