I can be the most laid back, flexible person most of the time. I don’t mean to make myself sound like I’ve got it all together or like I’m just so awesome I’m flexible all the time; but I’m typically pretty flexible.
When with friends, I don’t mind going where they want to eat instead of where I want to eat.
At work, if I am needed on another project or another space, I don’t mind moving.
Easy, simple things like that I can be INCREDIBLY flexible for. But the more I truly know myself, the more I realize that I am a bit of a control freak. It’s not that I have to be in control of every situation, or that when a problem needs to be solved it has to be done my way, but rather I’m a bit of a planner. And by a bit of a planner I mean I’m really a planner….like I already have my morning figured out tomorrow and I know what errands in what order I will run tomorrow after work. A friend and I are planning a vacation in October and I’m like OCD planning and finding fun things to do–and it’s the most exciting thing in the world.
I like to plan out my days and I have my life planned out, too…except that the way I thought my life should go when I was 20 didn’t exactly work out. In fact, if you had told 20-year-old-me all the things I’d have done and places I’d have lived since then I would have laughed. And then I probably would have had a nervous twitch because it SO wasn’t how my life was supposed to go.
A very wise woman I know lives her life in such a way that she gives everything, every plan completely to God. She felt God calling her to move to another country, so she prayed about it, began pursuing the means to make it happen, and asked God to close the doors if it wasn’t His Will. Things fell through and doors were closed, but the door to move wasn’t closed. She still moved and God provided, it just wasn’t in this neat and tidy plan that I would have concocted. And it probably wasn’t the way she expected it to happen but she was willing to to give it completely to God and asked him to shut the door if it wasn’t His Will.
I was talking with a friend recently who was faced with two paths; to stay on the path she had or to take a new job and a new path. I excitedly told her the story of my wise friend asking God to shut the doors if it wasn’t His Will.
But I don’t know if I could truly ask God to shut the doors if it wasn’t His Will. I don’t know if I could tell God, “This is my plan, this is how I see it, shut the doors if it isn’t your will.” It terrifies me to think of it, what if the deepest desires of my heart don’t come true? What if the amazing, mystical plan I have for my life isn’t God’s Will?
I have this need to be in control. Such a need that I struggle with asking the God of the universe, the God who created me, the God who so awesomely orchestrated the last 29 years of my life–including plans I would have shuddered to think were for me–I struggle with asking God to take my plans and close the doors if it isn’t His Will.
In reality, God’s will will prevail. 10 years ago I never would have thought that I would have been a camp counselor, I was too shy, there was NO WAY that I would have planned that. But God did, and it was one of the greatest things ever to happen to me.
God hasn’t let me down yet. The plans I had that haven’t come true, have been replaced by even greater life events, even greater life paths, but I still struggle to give up my dream life plan.
I’m a control freak. I’m a broken, sinful, control freak without knowledge of the big picture and yet I think my plans just might be better than God’s.
It terrifies me to ask God to start shutting doors if they aren’t His Will. And yet I claim to trust Him, I claim to follow Him, I claim to love HIm.
God promises that He has a plan for our lives.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11
He promises to be there with us.
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6
I love God. I love the plan He has had for me. I love looking back and seeing how His plan prevailed over mine, and how His plan was truly more awesome than the plan I had for me. So I’m a planner, a control freak, throwing that all to the wind. Throwing it all to God, to the one who created me, who loves me more than I can ever imagine. And asking God to close the doors if it isn’t His will.
It’s a bit terrifying.
It’s a bit nerve-wracking.
I’m sure I’ll try to take back my plans.
But in the end, I know that His plan is FAR better than mine.
In the end, I trust Him far more than I trust myself.
Close some doors. Calm my fears. Show me your plans, for you, oh Lord are my strength, my shield, my King.