Holding On Tight

holding-on-tight

I’ve lived most of my life in what you might call the “fast lane.” I am always going from one place to the next, whether it’s dance class, church, work, or time with friends. I also like to do everything myself.

Sound familiar? I know that it’s pretty common among millennials in my generation; we want to squeeze every second of time for all its worth. It makes us feel like we’re accomplishing something, like we’re worthwhile, like doing these things will make us more lovable. So what happens when you stop?

I found out exactly what happens last month when I had elbow surgery to repair some torn ligaments and muscles. Time stopped. Then, after the first few extremely difficult days, it started moving again, but at a snail’s pace. I couldn’t do anything on my own. I had to ask for help to open a jar of salsa and put my hair in a ponytail. It took me an hour to take a bath because I couldn’t get my cast wet. I felt completely helpless, like a child again … and I didn’t like it, not one little bit.

I think the reason this process has been so difficult is that I am in love with control. When I couldn’t do normal household and work tasks without help, I had to depend on other people. What if they did things differently (read: WRONG) than me?

This chance to slow my life down has really given me the opportunity to do some self-evaluation that I haven’t had much time for recently. Control is exactly what God wants us to give up when we offer ourselves as living sacrifices (Romans 12).

The thing about control is that when we clench our fists around it, we are acting and making decisions based on our own extremely time- and space-limited vantage points. When we give the control to God, we can be confident that he who can see everything and is fair and just will piece everything together according to his will.

As I’m learning this lesson, I’m hoping to also share it with the men at Emmaus. Giving up control can be so difficult, especially when our men have so little of it already. I hope that showing them how faithful God has been in my life when I loosen my grip will be a living testament to the fact that we can trust him, that he actually has our best interest in mind.

That’s one of the things that I love about Emmaus: we can live our lives together, encouraging each other to trust God more and more.

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