Twice I read something to this effect yesterday, that the more power you exert in a given situation, the less control you are apt to have. The context was in reference to the caution that must be used with certain hand tools, knives, etc. One illustration was by a butcher’s apprentice; the other, a home remodeling expert’s web site.
It sounds like a paradox almost. Shouldn’t more power result in better control? But thinking back over the times I’ve slipped and cut myself with a butcher knife – yes, I can agree. I almost lost a few fingernails yesterday using a razor blade to remove window caulking.
It seems like control, or the need for it, is at the root of many of our life situations. Things get out of control because we ignore them or live in denial. Or issues arise over struggles resulting from our need to control our circumstances. This is especially apparent to me in the relational realm. In most situations, I am learning, I simply have no control over anything but my response. And then I’m reminded that self-control is one of the manifestations of the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:23-24). So why do I continually grasp for control of external things, when obviously, control is hardly where it’s at?
I’m not given to cheesy analogies, but the Galatians passage brings to mind an obvious application. The more my life becomes infused with the power of the Spirit, the less control I will have because I will be giving it over to God. Perhaps that should read, the “less control I will need.”
Much food for thought as I go about my day. And now, back to our regularly scheduled room makeover efforts!
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Galatians 5:22-25