Lessons from God this Summer: Control Freak gets Humbled

Lessons from God this Summer: Control Freak gets Humbled
Posted on Sep 4, 2016 in Devotions
by: Erika MendozaYouth Camp 2016
I confidently came into summer 2016 with a great feeling that for once, I felt as though my life was together and I thought I had a control on it. However, I was not expecting a turnover so quickly. My summer consisted of Father-daughter time with God, bonding with family, serving my youth group, and work. For the most part, I had a pretty set schedule that scarcely stressed me out. I was also given the privilege to become a leader for my youth group and after asking God, He told me to go for it. I am beyond thankful for this blessing because when I reminisce about this summer, I see how God faithfully shaped me into that leader He wanted me to be and that I did not expect. And that’s the beauty of a growing relationship with God, you will become more and more like Him and not just you, but other people will see God’s glorious work.

Before youth camp, our student pastor asked us to identify why we are ashamed of sharing the Gospel and what we can do to overcome it. The main reason why I did not share Christ was because I do not have a control of what I would say and their response after I had shared the Good News. I remember having a long conversation with God about my problem and He reminded me of Himself—that He is in me. I have the Holy Spirit living in me and the humbling Truth He spoke to me in Matthew 10:18-20 says, “On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.” God tells me not to worry because He is sovereign during the conversation and anything that may happen after that.

Camp passed and I was beyond joyful of God’s lessons and blessings—one of the biggest blessings is knowing God has redeemed my brother! It was now time to prep for vacation Bible school and that was when stress from wanting to be in control crept in. Above that, I am also not very patient, which is another lesson God is (still) teaching me. I brought my stress before God and He used my peers and youth group to show me what He sees: progress because of teamwork and love because of the passion of doing it all for Him. And this became probably the best VBS and all the glory goes to Him!

However, a few days after VBS, I had some free time to think about the multiple things God wanted me to pursue. So out of obedience, I started researching various schools’ nursing programs and inquiring and planning about my availability, class and work schedules for the semester. Shortly after, I began feeling overwhelmed, confused, and upset. I tried to plan everything out and make everything fit but I couldn’t. This made me question why God would give me all these responsibilities and desires when He knew even my school schedule would be a lot to handle by itself. It may not seem like such a big deal, but I easily become overwhelmed and cry as a result. I talked to God about the problems with His plans. And when I felt He was just silent, I went back to crying and had multiple anxiety attacks. I also stopped doing my Father-daughter time because I was scared to come in weak and just disappoint Him. I wanted to run away from the confusion, loneliness, and the never-ending questions on my mind. I wanted to just be worry-free with my best friends, but for some reason, I felt as though God did not allow that to happen. In time, I realized he made my friends’ schedules busy so they would not have the time for me, so I wouldn’t be able to turn to them, so that I can turn to Him. I recalled the song, “I couldn’t run His presence. I couldn’t run from His arms. Jesus, He loves me, He is for me.” In the midst of crying, I clearly heard Him echo Psalms 46:10, “Be still and know that I am God.” God wanted me to stop crying, stop trying to fight anxiety, and stop relying on myself and others. I was humbled when God told me that I am weak and that He is God so His strength can cover my weakness. He explained to me that the reason why I felt depressed was because I was trying to find ways to control everything that would be going on in my life. Matthew 6:33 says, “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” In the midst of the chaos in my head, I needed Him, to seek Him, not answers. After that enlightenment, I asked God to take away the burden of wanting control over things I couldn’t handle and the chain of anxiety that grips me. And He did. My sovereign, all-knowing Father blessed me even more by revealing the reason for one of His plans for me.

Therefore, if you are struggling with anxiety, trust, or the need to control/ know things in advance, I can assure you that my God promises everything will work out for the good of those who love Him and have been called for His purpose. God provides His saving grace every day, even on your worst days. I’ve been reminded that people from the Old Testament had gone through turmoil such as Job. Job’s response is humbling because he continued seeking after God, finding his Joy. God is always good and was faithful to Job. And the God from the Old Testament is the same now, He is constant and ever-so faithful, and that is something to praise Him about. God will reveal Himself and His plans in His time; so just seek after the only One you need.

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