the Need for Control
summer, we enjoyed a family vacation in Maui.
It was a wonderful trip with many exciting activities,
but one incident - a kayaking adventure - had
the greatest impact on me. God used this incident
to teach me how to release my need for control.
my husband and I were planning this vacation
we decided to book the entire trip on-line.
We had never done this before, but I'm pretty
good on the computer, so we dug out our credit
card, logged on and in only three hours we had
booked our vacation.
week or two later I went on-line again to book
some family activities while on our Maui vacation.
I booked a luau, a magic show and lastly, something
called a "Kayak and Snorkeling Adventure".
knew we were going to be required to kayak over
three miles that day? Who knew that one could
get seasick on a kayak? Who knew how out of
shape we really were?
first challenge of our kayaking adventure was
learning to kayak as a team. My husband was
paired up with our eight-year old daughter in
one kayak, and I was paired up with our fifteen-year
old son in the other.
second challenge was dealing with the sea itself.
Rather than cutting smoothly and swiftly through
scenic glassy waters, as I had envisioned, we
strained every muscle in our attempts to cut
through the choppy ocean swells.
my son is only fifteen, he is built like a tank,
standing several inches taller then me and outweighing
me by close to a hundred pounds. A football
player, he works out regularly - clearly a great
choice for the strong, backseat position.
were instructed that the backseat kayak occupant
was to use his paddles to steer the kayak, while
the front person just keeps on paddling. Once
we got out to the open sea, we discovered this
trip would require constant steering and readjustment
of our positions to avoid losing sight of our
really should not have been a problem, except
I refused to let go and allow my son to take
control. I kept trying to steer our kayak and
change course, thinking that I was in a better
position to judge where we should be going.
Consequently, my son and I were fighting each
other with our opposite moves. He finally said
to me "Mom, unless you stop trying to steer,
I can't do my job."
struggled to let go, but when I did, things
went much more smoothly.
used this incident to teach me a deeper lesson
about letting go of my need for control.
is God's desire to lead each one of us, to reveal
his will for our lives and lead us toward the
best decision in every circumstance.
we allow the Lord to steer, he makes our lives
an enjoyable adventure. But if we think we know
better and insist on taking over the controls
- watch out!
so easy to sidestep God's word and commands
in favor of doing our own thing. We may truly
love the Lord and yet have a stubborn streak
that deludes us into thinking that his word
does not apply to us or to certain situations.
When that happens, we have taken over the control
of our lives (the kayak) and we will go in circles
- getting nowhere with a whole lot of effort!
of it this way; the kayak guide is the word
of God. We always adjust our position to follow
the guide so we don't get lost. The backseat
rider in the kayak is the Holy Spirit, sent
to lead us into all truth. It's our job to paddle
hard (live our lives to the best of our ability).
It's his job to steer!
Friedrichsen is a Christian Speaker,
Columnist, and Radio Show Host living in Mammoth
Lakes, California. She speaks in church meetings,
conferences, and ladies retreats. Her latest
project is a dynamic seminar entitled "The
Abundant Life." To find out more about
Paula's ministry visit her website at: www.pfministries.com
or telephone: 760-935-4295
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