2020 has given another meaning to the phrase “God is in control”. Clearly, I’m not in control of anything. I’ve tried to control the situations that surround me. Guess what? I’ve come to the conclusion that there isn’t enough organizational planning in the world that can supersede the divine orchestration of God.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve had to watch my father’s health attempt to deteriorate in front of my eyes. To see the man who taught me how to ride a bike, the man who proofread my sermons, the man who has always my sounding board for direction break down in front of me broke my heart in places I didn’t know could be broken.
I’ve only seen my father cry two times. The first time occurred at his ordination. He was so happy! The second time I saw my father cry was at my grandmother’s funeral. Seeing my father, Reverend Randolph Evans crumble at his prognosis illuminated the fragility of human life. For so many years, my Father was my Pastor and now it’s my turn to be his.
Now, I walk him through prayer and devotion.
Now, I speak life into him because his condition constricts his ability to speak for himself.
Now, I read him Bible stories.
I won’t lie, I questioned God. But that feeling quickly faded away. I can’t control this situation, but I can release my worry and allow God to carry out the plan that he has established for my parent’s life.
It’s not a coincidence that my father is now a patient at the hospice center he served at for over ten years. It’s not a coincidence that the same people that my father served are now serving him. His whole life was a set-up from the beginning!
I bounce back and forth from grief to gratitude daily as it relates to the status of my father’s health. Actually, I bounce back and forth from grief to gratitude daily over everything, but let’s stick to the point. I’m still processing the death of so many things I couldn’t control. I’m grieving plans that I can’t resurrect. I’m grieving behavior towards me that I naively accepted. I’m grieving my response to the behavior that I have naively accepted. I’m grieving delay. Unfortunately, I almost started to grieve the things that haven’t happened yet. BIG MISTAKE.
To clarify, this process of grieving isn’t always “doom and gloom”. My process has involved a lot of crying. I mean ugly crying. But, the process has also allowed me to reflect. There is such power in reflection, right? The situations that triggered immense disappointment have become a springboard for my wildest imaginations.
This process of grieving and releasing control has been traumatic, but I’ve discovered the goodness of God has always overshadowed my griefs… I just couldn’t see it when I was walking through the wilderness.
For those of you who are processing your life situations, and it appears that your bad days outweigh your good days, I get it. Despite your feelings and your current reality, you have to make the decision to choose joy. Once I choose joy, I started seeing life differently. I’m filled with gratitude towards God because he kept me from succumbing to my desire to quit. I’m even more grateful that God had complete control over every situation that I tried to put my hands in.
God is in control.
That’s the assurance that you need to hear.
It’s not that you aren incompetent, unintelligent or unable to complete tasks on your own – God just doesn’t need to you do things independently. We are designed to be dependent. In light of the growing women’s rights movement, being “dependent” sounds like a curse word. There are theologies centered around God being a woman because there are feminists who don’t believe in being submissive to a man or a deity with a male pronoun is suicide. So, let me be clear:
1. God is beyond gender. The use of “he” does not define God, it describes God in an allegorical context.
2. You should never want to be independent of God. He’s not a slave driver, he’s a Father.
3. It’s “ok” to be a woman and dependently independent.
I am woman who is completely dependent upon God for everything and I’m not unashamed of it. I’ve already messed up so much and my failures and weaknesses have taught me that I need a Savior.
I can’t heal my Father.
I don’t have a cure for my Father.
I can’t stop COVID-9 from spreading.
I can’t stop world hunger.
I can’t control anything but my level of surrender. My decision to submit to the leadership of Christ is something I can control. God doesn’t force us to love and trust him…. He shows that he’s trustworthy through his control and leadership.
In conclusion, release your desire to control and trust God’s plan for your life. His plan is better... trust that.