Open Hands - Elisabeth Klein

Confession: I am a control freak.

I have a feeling that sentence surprises no one.  No one is shocked by that revelation.  I’m not even. I’m fully aware of my control-freak tendencies. However, I am grateful to say that I am light years from the controlly woman I was a few years ago.

But still. Surrendering. Letting go. Trusting. These are all things I struggle with.

Which is why I’m super glad that my sweet church is doing a new series called “trusting God with…”.  I so need this.  It just feels like the perfect way to start a new year.

And here’s what I’ve already gotten, only one week in.

“Surrender is saying yes to our reality, be it suffering or joy.” – (probably ridiculously butchering) my pastor, Scott Hodge

It’s about being present.  It’s about not resisting our life and what’s happening in it, what God is trying to do in us and through us, what he’s trying to tell us.

Here’s an interesting thought for me: I have learned the past ten or so years – as one heartache after another has rolled into this sweet little life of mine – to embrace suffering. To lean into it. To enter into it. To beg God to teach me through it. Hard times, I totally get. Bring it on, my soul says (the rest of me recants, but I am only human). I totally get how to walk through a hard time.

However, happiness? Joy? Light? Goodness? Abundance? Wholeness?

Umm, foreign concepts. Do not get me wrong: I am not whining or complaining.

My life is FILLED to overflowing with good and beautiful things.  And I am a grateful, grateful girl for every sweet gift that lands in my lap.  And yet.

And yet I embrace the hard times and don’t seem to know what to do with the good times.  I mean, I live through good times. I thank God for the good times. But I’m not sure I sit with the good times and really soak them in.

Basically, I don’t think I know how to just enjoy happiness. How crazy is that??

All of life is a risk. We have no idea what’s coming just around the bend. If there’s something horrible going on in our lives today, it might not be there tomorrow.

And conversely, if there is something sweet and good that is bringing me happiness and Jesus appears to be all over it, I just want to enjoy it fully. I don’t want to rush ahead. I don’t want to play out the worst case scenario to its end, robbing myself of joy today.  And I don’t want to stop something good just because it may end poorly or simply may end.

I want to Untitledlet go of control. I want to stop being that controlly woman who thinks she knows what’s best. Because let’s be clear here: I have no idea. I have no idea, truly, what’s best for me, and I have no idea, really, what God is up to.

So, open hands and an open heart to all of my life – all of the bad and hard, but yes, Lord, open to all of the good and beautiful and joy. Open me up wide to whatever you have for me, sweet Jesus.