I am notorious for trying to figure out the outcome of a situation before it happens. I come up with all the possible scenarios, and then analyze each one. For a long time, I had absolutely no idea why I did this. Now, I have come to realize that I am trying to control what may happen in my life … As if, right?
Where did the need to control stem from? As I look back over the years, I had a series of unforeseen occurrences take place in my life. You know those life events that leave you breathless, like sudden death or divorce in the family. After several incidents that I was not expecting, I started to project worst-case scenarios over my circumstances. I did this to “prepare” myself for the so-called tragedies that may happen. Soon, I just began to live expecting the worst so that I would not be thrown-off by unexpected events. This seemed to be the safer approach for me, however, this only intensified my need for control.
Trying to figure out life before it happens will cause you to be super-heightened, guarded, and anxious. It does not prevent fear, but escalates fear. After years of thinking and believing this way, the enemy’s lies were built in my mind; strongholds were formed.
What you believe becomes your reality.
I believed the lie that I had to prepare, figure-out, and control what I could in life so that I would never be caught off guard again. This way of living is exhausting, and it shows that we are having trouble trusting God. Through the hurt and pain that I experienced I began to have difficulty trusting God, and believing that He was good all the time. Please do not judge me in this. As my family would say, “Walk a mile in my shoes first.”
This is not to justify my behavior, but I was struck many times by events that caused me some trauma. War veterans are oftentimes diagnosed with PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) in part because of the trauma they experienced during war. Veterans are not the only ones who can experience PTSD, people who undergo traumatic, life-altering incidents can as well.
Healing from damaged emotions can take time. What I have learned is that we are not meant to figure life out, nor control what comes into our lives. Figuring out life is based on fear–fear of the unknown. Take life as it comes, and live one day at a time.
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things-sufficient for the day is its own trouble. Matthew 6:34
Thinking about what could happen in a situation produces unwanted fear, anxiousness, and releases stress hormones into our bodies.
True peace comes from believing God is in control of all your circumstances. Trusting God with every aspect of your life (even the things that you do not understand), will cause you to stay in peace and have rest in Him.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God, and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
Do you find yourself trying to figure out things in your life, or trying to control? What do you believe is the real reason for this?