Friday, March 23, 2012

Control Freak

I have some callouses on my hands. Not the callouses of hard and long-term training, like a gymnast or a guitarist. I wish these callouses said something about my work ethic. No, these are new. These callouses are that of a control freak.

See, here's the deal. I'm having a baby in a couple of months and when I walk my dog, Ruby, she really walks me. I decided that this would not do when I'm trying to push a stroller and "walk" my dog. My plan: retrain my dog to act properly on a leash. The only problem is that Ruby is a bit stronger than I am. But I have a will. On our walks, I would hold the leash so tightly that my hands were rubbed raw. Thus the callouses. If you can't see where this is going, I'll spell it out for you. My dog was winning. My attempt at retraining my dog was failing miserably. I can only hold the leash so tightly. I'm weak(er than my dog).

No, really, I am just weak. And this led me to a conclusion. This situation happens probably daily in my life. I decide that something is not the way it should be and then I try to man-handle it until I'm satisfied with the results. And I usually end up failing miserably. I'll try again and again to make it work, but my heart just gets calloused. Why? Because I am weak.

Sounds like a vicious cycle. Thankfully, I've discovered an exit ramp. Are you ready for this?

Let go.

But it's not really that easy is it? I couldn't just let go of Ruby's leash. She would run away, especially if she saw a cat. So, we got a training collar and then I let go. It's amazing the difference the proper equipment can make. I mean, Ruby is practically training herself and my hands are becoming soft again! In my case, the proper equipment can be something as simple as a mindset to getting outside perspective and help. When a situation arises that I think won't do and my insides scream, "control, don't let go," I turn to a thankfulness mindset. I thank God that he has prepared me for such a time as this. Or I thank Him that He will provide what I lack. He will give strength where I'm weak. And He will give counsel where my wisdom falls short. This is what makes it possible for me to let go. Because, really, my hands are just trying to wrestle control from His. When I let go, I get to see God move.

So, I'm still a recovering control freak, but one day at a time I'm seeing that letting go is far superior to getting callouses.