Tuesday, February 22nd, 2022
There’s an often repeated piece of advice in business and life that goes “control the controllables,” meaning that we should focus our efforts on things that we believe we can control versus those things that are out of our hands. But is anything in our lives truly under our control? God is sovereign and what happens in our lives is ultimately determined not by us, but by God. All things flow from Him, both the good blessings and the tests meant to grow our spiritual maturity. And even when we fail in a season of testing, God is there, still blessing us. Take Abram, who when a famine struck the land decided to control his controllables and fled to Egypt in search of food – turning from faith in God’s provision to what seemed like a sure thing in the pharoah’s provision. Abram met serious consequences in Egypt, but God was faithful – saving him and his wife, and even blessing them with riches on their way out.
So if we trust that God is so good as to bless us even when we turn from Him, why do we insist on controlling what we think we can control? Said another way, knowing that faith is what God wants first and foremost, do we still think more blessing will come from the work of our hands rather than our faith? What we insist on controlling, we take from God. By finding earthly means to satisfy our needs, we shut out the heavenly means God has for us if we just have faith. Imagine the testimony we would have of Abram if he remained in the promised land, continuing to do as God called him to do, even during the famine. Do we doubt that God would have provided for him? Of course not!
What’s more — if we live our lives focused on controlling the controllables, what do we do about the uncontrollables? Can we get through life on controllables alone? Of course not. In the end, this is an idiom we grasp onto in order to rationalize when things do not work out. We are left with no answers as to why things didn’t work out, but we take solace in the fact that we did our part. What if, instead, we focused on prayer, giving all to God, believing that whatever God provides will be good and even if challenging in the moment, counting it as all joy, anyway?
In the good times we will be reminded of God’s goodness and in the bad, we are reminded of His sovereignty, and promise to work all things for good. Overall, when we know from where life comes, we know where to go for life. Today, change your mindset to one of prayer about everything rather than control over the things we believe we can control.
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:6-7
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” – James 1:2-4
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” – Romans 8:28