Who is ultimately in control of your life? This challenging question was addressed by our Pastor yesterday morning and the way he addressed it challenged my heart. I totally believe God is in control of every area of my life, but when a curve ball sends me scrambling to find answers for something beyond my ability to control a situation, person, or event how do I respond?
November 7th was the 13th anniversary of acquiring my brain injury (the result of a car accident). Through the years God has grown me in countless ways either through readily surrendering to Him, or through the consequence of not readily surrendering to Him.
When someone acquires a brain injury, they are immediately thrown into a world of unknowns. Daily living is challenged by unfamiliarity, fear, chaos and trepidation. As days turn into weeks, months, then years, we slowly learn ways to cope---to adapt. Courage is required to test our abilities and limitations. We learn to monitor our surroundings, and thus somewhat control how well we progress on a new pathway of life. But what happens when circumstances produce situations we cannot control, no matter how hard we try?
I firmly believe God must be included in every step we take, every decision we make, and every situation we encounter. Becoming immersed in the classroom of re-discovery only makes life rewarding and fulfilling when the instructor is our Heavenly Father. He wants us to learn, to grow, to become stronger. But He is the only One who has full and complete control of everything. When difficult circumstances arise (brain injury/disability related or not) we must remember to ask ourselves, "Is this mine to control?" Many times life's challenges are far beyond our own control, so we totally stress out, panic or become fearful. This places us in a vulnerable position and when in such a position, we may make unwise decisions and/or fall apart.
God does not want that to happen. It is at such times that He encourages us to lay it all before Him, to surrender every part to Him, including our emotions and actions/reactions. Our Pastor kept referring to the following passage, saying it after every challenging situation he gave as examples. God really spoke to my heart through the way he did this....it is a passage I know well and love dearly, but I was powerfully reminded of the miraculous way God can ease an anxious heart when one purposefully stops what they are doing to seek out this passage. Almighty God, our Heavenly Father promises His children that He will fill us with HIS peace, a peace which will calm our hearts and minds regardless of situation or circumstance.
I encourage you to find a quiet place and read this passage every single time you experience doubt, fear, anxiety or uncertainty. It doesn't need to be an entire Bible Study.....just find a quiet place where God's Holy Word can speak to your heart clearly, without distraction or interruption. Perhaps memorize it for situations when there is no quiet place and everything is swirling around you. But don't just ramble it off---ask God to quiet your anxious heart, to calm your soul. God IS in control, at all times, and He is much bigger than we are to handle whatever life throws at us. We just need to seek Him out and listen to His words of reassurance. He is able to do far more than we can ever imagine. Trust Him. Seek the only peace which is beyond human understanding. Let Him guard your heart and mind. Doing so will change your life.
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the PEACE OF GOD, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
(Phil 4: 6, 7 NIV Life Application--Italics/Capitals added)
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