Monday, April 22, 2013

Truth or Lie #15: The Pathway to True Joy is to Relinquish Control

Truth:    The pathway to true joy is to relinquish control.

Lie:         I will only find true joy when I have what I want and have accomplished my own personal goals. 

I remember the moment like it was yesterday.

I was driving to work, upset about something. I couldn’t tell you now what it was. But something wasn’t right (or the way I wanted). And I was toying with thoughts that the way life was meant God’s kindness had run out.

Either that, or He had turned the other direction, and it was time for me to step in and take charge.

As these thoughts festered in my mind, I rounded a curve in the road. Suddenly, the mountain I head toward every day loomed in front of me.

Mt. Hood

It stood there like handwriting on the wall, as the Spirit brought this promise to mind: 
"For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed;
but my kindness shall not depart from thee." (Isaiah 54:10) 

Suddenly, I realized I wasn’t just doubting the kindness of God.

I was believing the lie that I knew how to be kinder to myself than God did.

I was believing the lie that to relinquish all control to my heavenly Father meant I would have to accept less than perfect, less than my greatest dreams, and, along with that, the joy that I was searching for in hopes and things.

As I gazed at the majestic beauty of the mountain in front of me, I found myself awed even more that God’s kindness to me would outlast that mountain.

He knew me before He created Mt. Hood.
He planned my days and loved me in them before I even began living them myself.
He will continue to love me when Mt. Hood is gone, and I find myself living in the place He’s preparing for me.

One day, the glimpses of His kindness now will be seen in the light of His riches. Only then will we realize those riches were being lavished on us all along—even in the days when they seemed to be absent.

Relinquishing control to a God as kind as He is means choosing to accept His ways, even when they don’t make sense. 

Relinquishing control means letting go of the joys we’re grasping for, so our hands are free to accept the greater joys that accompany submission to His choices.

When the dreams He has decided for us are fulfilled, we’ll be so caught up in the joy of His choice, we’ll wonder what we saw in the hopes we were planning for ourselves.

The truth is . . . the pathway to true joy is to relinquish control.

Relinquish control to a God kinder than we are.

Relinquish control to a God whose kindness will outlast time and eternity.

Related Post: MS and Broken Dreams: Bethany's Story (Guest Blog Post at Kimberly Rae's blog)

This is Part 15 in a series, called “Truth or Lie,” based on the book, Lies Women Believe: and the Truth that Sets them Free, by Nancy Leigh DeMoss.

In the final chapter, Nancy highlights 22 freeing truths that are essential to our Christian lives.

Come back each Monday (or subscribe to Capacity Corner) as we look together at these 22 truths one-by-one.

Feel free to share your own thoughts below!

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