I was in Walmart today, and as I leave the bread aisle, I hear screaming a couple of aisles over. As the words came into audio focus, there was hateful profanity and very aggressive language that startled me. I peaked around the corner just in to see some Walmart employees closing on the location to control the conflict.
It seems that everywhere we look these days, you can usually find something or someone that seems out of control. Whether it’s a stranger going off in Walmart, road rage on Malabar Road, politicians in our government, the media, our kids, our jobs, our marriages or a deep personal struggle within ourselves that no one else knows, it’s not hard to find an issue with control.
If we aren’t losing it, we’re trying to gain it, but here’s a thought…do we ever really achieve it? We try to control our career, our children or our lives, but one moment that we never see could change it all. I know one thing for sure…if I ever had control of everything, I would make a mess.
In the Bible, the writer, King Solomon writes these words. “We can make our plans, but the LORD determines our steps.” (Proverbs 16:19). What this says is that we really don’t have any control. Oh we make our plans and we act like we have control, but we really don’t.
The only control that God ever promises that we can have is “self-control”. One of the fruit of the Spirit, or the byproduct of following Christ, is self-control. What that means for us that when we put ourselves under the control of Jesus, he gives us back the ability to control ourselves. Until we live for something other than our whims, our control rests in our desires, but when we live for Christ, we are given the ability to live beyond our desires, under control.
Here’s an easy way to remember it. You cannot control your environment, but with Christ, you can control yourself.
Jim Campbell (@jwcamp on Twitter) is the Lead Pastor of Bay West Church,
which meets at 100 Emerson Drive in Palm Bay on Sundays at 11am.
For more info on Bay West Church, Like us on facebook.com/baywestchurch, or see baywestchurch.com.