Loss of Control

Recently my friend Kim came to visit. Or should I say, she was kind and made her layover longer to hang out with me for a couple of hours before heading on to her final destination? I was still very much in the “get to know each other” phase of friendship here in Germany, so whatever the case, I was so hungry for a friend with history. You know what I mean, someone with whom you already have an established relationship, who knows some of your quirks, who’s already figured out that you’ve been known to put your foot in it, and that you talk too much when you’re excited…

So, poor Kim. I’d talked her EAR off for hours. And now I was driving her back to the airport when my GPS just stopped working. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize this fact until I was headed over a giant bridge over the Rhine. I may not know a lot, but I DO know that the Frankfurt airport does not reside on the other side of the Rhine River. I started to freak out and drive and try to figure out how to get back on track all at once. What was worse is that Kim’s flight was in…ooooooh…..30 minutes. We’re about 20 minutes from the airport. 

I thankfully got us back on track pretty quickly and then started to profusely apologize to Kim, who, while I had been busy sorting out the drive had gotten very quiet. I figured it was because she was upset with me….who wouldn’t be?! I was possibly going to make her miss her flight! But then again….she didn’t seem upset. 

Sure enough, Kim’s response was not one of a person annoyed with my failings but instead, she apologized that sitting in the car was bringing all her sleepiness to the forefront (remember she’d been awake for about a day and a half at this point, traveling) and then she said, “When you travel as much as I do you can’t get upset with these kinds of delays! You just have to trust the Lord is in control and then do your best.” 

She made her flight. 

I got lost on the way home because the GPS quit again, but the REAL point of this post is Kim’s response. 

“You just have to trust the Lord is in control and then do your best.” 

So much to unpack there. But it’s been with me a lot over the last month since it happened. For me to believe and live out a statement like that then I need to work on two important lies in my life. 

“You can’t trust God.” – This boils down to me not thinking God is 100% trustworthy, that His will is not perfectly, perfectly good. When bad things happen there’s some little part of me that doubts His great goodness. 

Which brings me to….

“I should be in control.” – If I just work hard enough and get everything right (perfectionism, anyone?) then I can get this right because MY plan is good. I am better than God….Remind you of any original sin right there? Ugh. 

Yes, over the last year or so I’ve been working hard on my tendencies toward anxiety. With those feelings of anxiety comes a great desire to “get control” or just to be controlling. OR does my controlling nature make me anxious? It’s a vicious cycle to be sure. But the sinfulness there is striking. How thankful I am that the Lord is not letting me just stay in this cycle of sin, that he’s allowing me to work on this sinfulness in my life.

Now that I’ve got this little story on paper I realize how perfectly suited the illustration of the GPS is! I am forever like that little GPS spouting out “turn right on Berlinerstrasse” in that annoying voice of hers and then just freezing up in the middle of traffic on the way to the airport. And yet the Lord never loses the signal. He is perfectly good and perfectly in control.

2 thoughts on “Loss of Control

  1. Leave it to me to get to the heart of it all…if you use Siri on your phone for your GPS, you can choose to have a male voice. Even better, an Australian male voice. You’re welcome!

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