In 1984 Whodini released a song titled, The Freaks Come Out At Night. A long, long time ago my older cousin and his friends performed this song at the Union High school talent show. I’ll never forget watching the crowd going crazy when one of them jumped off the stage turning the performance up a notch. My little mind knew nothing about said freaks and why they came out at night, but the song and performance were contagious. In 2019 I’d have to say that Whodini’s words still ring true. The freaks do come out at night.
I have a confession……. I’m a FREAK! A control freak that is. And the freaks definitely come out at night. Control freaks are often masked as helpful willing servants. We have clever ways of inserting our opinions and suggestions on the way things should or should not be done. Sometimes we’re created out of a place of pride but more often than not control freaks are a result of experiencing a lack of control at some point in life. It doesn’t necessarily matter what the defining moment the result is the same. One feels as if the only way they can ensure things are done properly is if the control freak themselves has a hand in it.
During the daytime control freaks look fine. You may not even be able to tell who the true freaks are when things are going great the sun is shining and everything is running smooth. However, there’s generally trouble brewing just under the surface. If you’d take the time to peel back a few layers you’d see that one inconvenience could cause everything to implode. But since us freaks have a way of convincing people everything is “fine” no one ever takes time to peel those layers back.
The thing about life is that there is always a nighttime season. There is always a season that causes things to get dark and truth ends up being exposed. Things are not “fine”. There are usually multiple fires waiting to either be put out or run wild. I wish I could title this piece “How to stop being a control freak”; but I can’t. What I can bring to the table are some steps that allowed me to accept the fact that no matter what it looks like, I am not in control.
- Go boldly to the throne of grace: Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess.For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. Hebrews 4:14-16 NIV We have to remember that we have a high priest who can empathize/understand/share our feelings. It’s ok to feel the need to control things. It’s not ok to withhold our short comings from our conversations with God. Imagine how Jesus felt when he was praying in the garden asking God to somehow avoid the cross but humbling himself to the will of the father for his life. If Jesus can relinquish control to the father, he can grant us grace to do the same.
- Go back to the beginning: In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. Genesis 1:1-3KJV. Sometimes I meditate on creation. I ask myself, do I truly believe Gods word? If the answer is yes that means that the God of the universe who created heaven, earth and all things in between also created me. This statement of truth holds so much weight. Compared to God I literally have no control. I can’t even turn on my bedroom light without getting out of bed and relying on my local power company to supply electricity. Yet God created the sun with 4 words. The creation story helps me to understand just how big God is and that He is more than qualified to control my life and all things I encounter.
- Warning! Don’t make yourself into a golden calf: The first of the 10 commandments states: I am the Lordyour God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. “You shall have no other gods before me. Exodus 20:2-3 NIV. However, in the 32nd chapter of Exodus the children of Israel did just that. They made a golden calf to worship because they were not happy with the process associated with freedom through the Most High. (Exodus 32:1-25). I’m always afraid that my reluctance to relinquishing control and allow the creator to reign supreme over every area of my life is the equivalent of placing my will, knowledge and understanding in a position that is equal to or above God. This is a very dangerous place to be in. Only bad things can come from this heart posture. Trust me! I know. When I find myself nearing this place I take the time to be honest with God about what I’m feeling and ask him to give me the strength to yield to his will.
- Let God build you a tribe: ……Simon (who is called Peter) and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John;Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him. Matthew 10:2-4 NIV. Jesus built a tribe! These were men of different backgrounds and occupations. He could have very well performed miracles and wonders without this crew. However, we know that he does everything in community. We were not built to walk this road alone. None of the disciples were God in human form. Not one was the same as Jesus. Still they all played a part in a journey that forever changed the world. Even Judas. Your tribe may not look like you, they may not talk like you; but if you let God build it your tribe will help to write your story to the glory of the Most High God. It wasn’t until I enlisted the help of my God given tribe that I realized just how out of control my life truly was.
Like most things letting go and letting God is easier said than done. The reward of allowing Jesus Christ to be Lord of your life is worth the struggle. Jesus has truly been the cure for my anxieties, fears, insecurities, shortcomings and control issues. He has healed my body and he has provided mana from heaven when I had no earthly resources. I challenge you to yield to Gods will for your life. Try Him and see if he will not open up the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it! Malachi 3:10
Father God this evening we come boldly to the throne of grace
Asking for strength enough to be weak
Father I ask on behalf of every person with control issues that they would let go and allow you to write their story
For those who are not ready to let go I ask that you show them who you are God and that they would recognize your sovereignty and as they let go little by little you would increase their measure of faith
God I ask that we would learn to place ourselves, our children, family, career, finances, anxieties, fears, health, governments, every thing that you have given us dominion over back into your over qualified hands
I pray that we would find rest in your arms and come to realize that whatever it looks like; if we keep our hearts and minds focused on you we will not fall
In Jesus’ name we pray