Control

What Controls You?

Bible Study / Spiritual Formation //

For the love of Christ controls us.  2 Cor. 5:14

What controls you?  Dictionary.com defines “control” as: to exercise restraint or direction over; dominate; command.  In ministry, leadership and life, here are some things that I think we let control us:

–  Our emotions.  Maybe it is just because I am a girl, but way too often how I am feeling dictates too much of how I respond.  My emotions seem to “exercise direction over” my actions.  Whether it is reacting to my girls’ arguing in anger and frustration or breaking down in tears because baby woke up for the third time in the middle of the night or reacting emotionally to a church member’s complaint, when my emotions control my actions, that is a problem.

–  Our pride.  Too often we get very caught up in protecting what people think of us.  We make decisions and gear our worlds around protecting an image that exists mainly in our minds.  We want people to think we are super-Godly or super-mom or super-leader or whatever, and that pride controls us.

–  Our drivenness.  We should strive to do our best in life and in ministry, but when we are controlled by becoming bigger and better and more successful we just end up lost and empty.

–  Selfishness.  The root of all sin is our desire to put ourselves first.  We often are very slow to identify selfishness in ourselves, and when we do we are so quick to justify it away.  But the truth is, we are too often controlled by looking out for ourselves and what we want and what we need.

–  Fear.  When our actions and decisions are controlled by fear, we can not be walking in faith.  Our brain is filled with the “what if’s” and we allow those to speak louder than the truths of God’s word.  Life or leadership controlled by fear is a dark path.

So grateful that God gives us an alternative.  By believing and trusting in Him, the love of Christ should control us.

LOVE…

the 1 Corinthians kind… that is patient, kind, that doesn’t envy or boast, that isn’t arrogant or rude or irritable or resentful.  The kind that rejoices in the truth.

The kind that bears, believes, hopes and endures all things. 

And the most powerful part is that it isn’t my love.  Because my love doesn’t compare. My love fails and falters and seeps into being conditional.  But it is the love of CHRIST that controls us.

And He never fails.  And He never gives up.  And He grants grace upon grace.  His mercies are new every morning.

That is the love that should control us.

Our thoughts.

Our words.

Our actions.

Our attitudes.

Our lives.

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About the Author

I am a blessed children’s minister in Bradenton, Florida who is loving life trying to do what God wants me to do with all of the families at West Bradenton.  More importantly I’m trying to love my husband and raise my two crazy girls (and one on the way) to love Jesus with all that they’ve got.  I also really like ice cream.