Due to circumstances throughout my childhood, I suffered through years of feeling broken and damaged. Because of this, I was very vulnerable to more pain. I didn’t much care for the feeling of helplessness caused by the magnitude of my external circumstances. So, I decided when I turned 18 years old that no one would be able to control me from that day forward.
Since I grew up bound by tough restrictions, I rarely got to experience many worldly things. Despite this fact, what I had experienced through my pain was all I needed to know. There wouldn’t be one thing that would change my mind in owning control. Not even a conversation with my much older, knowledgeable and wiser self.
So, I began my new chapter of owning control. However, this was only portrayed by my external self. Internally, I was full of pride. I determined that people would either love me or hate me. If they chose the latter, then I would show them the exit door from my life.
Due to this change, I began to build walls around my heart. In an attempt to be less vulnerable, I resolved to let very few people get to know who I really was. In doing so, I allowed my external self to be more vulnerable to a world of dangers- caused by drinking and night stays with strangers. Trying to take control of my external circumstances caused my brokenness and damage to be much worse than before.
At the core of my being I was indeed helpless. The deeper root of these pains were caused by something I had not yet come to realize. The truth: I felt rejected by a dad that just couldn’t fulfill his roll of being a father. That rejection fueled my search for attention in all the wrong places. It created a longing for a false love. It desired for approval from others.
Fast forward in time to nearly a decade later, I began my search to get back to God’s heart. I studied what it truly meant to be set apart from the world and to live for Him. I asked God for deeper knowledge and understanding from His Word, which is THE Truth. Here is what I learned:
- To let go of control and surrender all of my past to the One who created me. Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.- James 4:7 (NIV)
- When I accepted Jesus into my heart and asked to be made anew by the blood of His sacrifice, my old self died! I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.- Galatians 2:20 (NIV)
- I’m not the sum of that younger version of myself. No longer do I have to live under the scrutiny of shame, regret and condemnation. Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.- Romans 8:1-2 (NIV)
- I can walk in freedom, because Christ was my ransom, and He paid in full my atonement when He died on the cross. But the Scriptures declare that we are all prisoners of sin, so we receive God’s promise of freedom only by believing in Jesus Christ.- Galatians 3:22 (NLT)
- God can make good from any painful situation. I now understand that He can create purpose through my past rejection. For Jesus is the one referred to in the Scriptures, where it says,‘The stone that you builders rejected has now become the cornerstone.’- Acts 4:11 (NLT)
This whole process of learning to surrender my control can be summed up in one picture. I imagine myself as clay and God as my Potter. Untouched clay appears to be a heaping mess. If I, the clay, attempt to control my external circumstances, I would still be a heaping mess, and then some! Oh, but to give up control to the hands of my Potter- He is continually regulating those external circumstances. He has shaved off that mess of who I once was and made me a new creation.
In Christ, my new creation is a self that is righteous, blameless, and holy. The only thing that is required for me to control?!.. simply believing in my Creator.
“What sorrow awaits those who argue with their Creator. Does a clay pot argue with its maker? Does the clay dispute with the one who shapes it, saying, ‘Stop, you’re doing it wrong!’ Does the pot exclaim, ‘How clumsy can you be?’ … This is what the Lord says— the Holy One of Israel and your Creator: “Do you question what I do for my children? Do you give me orders about the work of my hands? I am the one who made the earth and created people to live on it.”- Isaiah 45:9-10, 12 (NLT)