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Learning to Release Control

faith family friendship leadership Jan 27, 2024
learning to release control

4 minute read

By Bethany Rees

I have been watching The Chosen tv show lately that showcases the life of the disciples as they learn to follow Jesus (Amazon has all the seasons, Netflix has the first one). 

 The Chosen Trailer from Season 1

One thing that has really struck me in the show is not only the compassion and patience of Jesus, but the hardheadedness of the disciples as they struggle to give up control of what they are used to doing versus what they are called to do now. 

I know this struggle. I feel this struggle daily.

My mind is flooded with my wants, needs, and my ideas for how things should be. Yet Jesus is often countercultural to what we know and are used to. 

In Biblical times, the Pharisees were the religious leaders and experts on the scriptures. What did they do with this great influence? They tried to control behavior through a system of rigorous laws and ostracized those they could not control through judgment (shaming really). Their focus on control of the religion for God, kept them from embracing the relationship with God

As I ponder this concept in my own relationship with God, I can’t help but see this same battle in my parenting, or how I act towards my parents, siblings, friends, clients. Etc. How much more am I fighting for control of the decision than I am in embracing the relationship for growth in love and serving?

Don’t get me wrong, structure is a good thing because there will be chaos and conflict without it. However, when my heart crosses the line from organization to control…well, that’s where my heart tends to lose connection with those I wanted a relationship with in the first place. 

So here’s where the Holy Spirit is working within my constant internal battle: 

1) My Paradigm: 

I am a steward; a vessel in which God will work through. Nothing is mine and everything is God’s, so I will hold all things and relationships loosely. 

  • “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” ~Galatians 2:20
  • Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” ~1 Peter 4:10 NIV

 2) My Structure:

God created order, so I am not to trust structure more than I am to trust God. God will lead and inspire the organization needed, so I must pray for discernment to follow His Holy Spirit.  

  • “And For God is not a God of confusion but of peace.” ~ 1 Corinthians 14:33a  
  • “Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us,  and establish the work of our hands upon us; yes, establish the work of our hands!” ~ Psalm 90:17

3) My Opinion:

Most decisions we fight so hard to make mean nothing when it comes to eternity. The more I learn to love, the more I learn to live in harmony with others.

  • “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” ~Philippians 2:3-4 
  • “Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.” ~Romans 12:1-18

4) My Attitude:  

Pastor Charles Swindoll was right when he said “Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react.” The simple truth is that I can’t always control what happens to me. However, my attitude makes all the difference in the world when it comes to serving and leading others. 

  • Let all that you do be done in love.” ~1 Corinthians 16:14 
  • Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,” ~ Philippians 2:14-15

What should happen if I fight for and win control? I get what I want, when and how I want?! How selfish that sounds. 

God grant me and anyone that reads this your strength to say no to self and say yes to your calling.

Help us Father to release control so that we can earnestly pray “Your will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.”  


Know Better. Do Better. Live Better. Release Control!

Rocks before Sand!


“Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us,  and establish the work of our hands upon us; yes, establish the work of our hands!” ~ Psalm 90:17

Theme Song: 

Make Room (Lyrics) - Community Music

  References Used:

  • The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
  • Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
  • Swindoll, Charles R. Life Is 10% What Happens to You and 90% How You React. Thomas Nelson, 17 Jan. 2023.

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