by Jenny Harrison
“The closest to being in control we will ever be is in that moment that we realize we’re not.”
Ok. I am going to confess right off the bat! I am one of those people who like things orderly and “in control”. You can always count on me to have THE plan and well-thought-out-particulars for any event.
However, I realize that I have difficulty working outside of my comfort zone, and the effort I expend to remain comfortable has the opposite effect and keeps me sick and tired.
God in his wisdom, blessed me by providing individuals who love unconditionally and are willing to stick around and help me unpack my controlling “baggage”.
The easy-going “taking life one day at a time” nature of my husband has been a wonderful balance in our marriage. He continues to help me in the “letting go” department and for that I am grateful.
When God placed it on my heart to begin a women’s ministry, I wondered if maybe I had received the wrong memo. But what this woman of control found out was that it isn’t necessary to have it all together. I was asked to be obedient, not perfect.
God surrounded me with a group of ministry sisters who assist me in curbing my perfectionistic tendencies. By redirecting my focus when I become overwhelmed with details, increasingly I have experienced more joy in my life.
Let’s start with my precious sister-in-law Freida. When I lose my perspective and begin to feel overwhelmed, Freida will gently and calmly say, “Sis let’s pray.” The words that come from her lips are God inspired. It is impossible to walk away and not feel His magnificent presence. My eyes are no longer focused on the distracters around me but fixed on my Lord. I am reminded once again that He is the one with the Master plan, not I.
Michelle has the perfect balance of humor and honesty. She can deliver any message to this overactive child of Christ in a way I can process and digest. One day, when talking to Michelle, I felt wounded due to some hurtful words by another individual. As I shared the string of unflattering adjectives used to describe me, she lovingly dispelled the untruthful and hurtful words until I mentioned one of the comments that seemed to be spot on. Michelle chuckled and said, “Well sis, I think we are going to have to give them that one.” We both broke out in laughter. Thank you my sister for giving me the courage to take a deeper look at myself because the unwillingness to admit our flaws is one of the most damaging forms of control.
Melinda and Angie are our mother-daughter duo on the team. The best way to describe these two is they possess an “altered perspective” on life. One day Melinda noticed I was feeling a combination of frazzled and burdened. She said it sounded like I needed to be lifted up, and she was just the person to do it. She then exclaimed, “If you can’t get a grip, I will give you a lift — I will catapult you into the next county.” I began to laugh so hard I couldn’t breathe. When I could talk again I told her the idea was highly disturbing. She informed me that I should never question her methods.
Since our dear Angie (who lovingly refers to me as Aunt Jenny) is cut from the same cloth of DNA, I have no doubt she would assist her mother at the time of lift off.
So today, I want to celebrate freedom from the drudgery and misery of my self-imposed, rigid rules — all of my unnecessary “have to” and “ought to” do lists that keep me sick and tired.
I praise God for my husband who keeps me balanced, and for friends (as colorful as they may be) for loving me in spite of my quirks. Whether they pray, laugh with me, or threaten to launch me into next week, I am a better person because of each one of them.
Who has God placed in your life to bring out the best in you?
Copyright © 2013, Jenny Harrison, all rights reserved, Breath of Life Women’s Ministries. Quote from Brian Kessler.