Do You Like to Be In Control?

Do You Like to Be In Control?
by Gail Millan

 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
Matthew 6:21 (ESV)

“Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.”
Colossians 3:2 (ESV)

Most of us want to be in control of our lives when really, God is in control. I have a particular life lesson that my husband and I learned earlier this year. This is how it changed our lives…

When we are self-sufficient, it can be difficult to “let go and let God” for we are used to being in charge of our own life, making our own decisions and choices, and taking care of ourselves.

We don’t like surprises, so we try to control not just our present, but our future, too. We want to know everything that is going to happen ahead of time, but it’s really fear that causes us to be a control freak. We don’t want to be caught unaware because it can be scary!

We especially don’t want anyone telling us how to live our life, for we know best! If we tend to worry, we justify making our own plans by somehow convincing ourselves that our way is the best. Besides, who knows us best other than God? We tell ourselves, “I work hard,” and “I deserve it,” then continue to overspend on “stuff”. Some of that stuff is still sitting in a closet not being used, so that is money down the drain. We make decisions and live with the outcome while underneath (in denial) we are worried about what may happen, but tell ourselves, “It’s OK. God doesn’t mind if I buy stuff,” or “God is blessing me with abundance (of stuff).”

I had come from a background with no boundaries, and my husband had too many. I believed in the “rewards” system of buying stuff whenever I wanted it, without proper financial boundaries. My husband is patient and can wait to save up for an item, whereas I will use credit to get it now.

Last year, my husband and I were feeling the effects of too many bills and not enough income to keep from living from paycheck to paycheck. There were financial mistakes, mostly by me, as I’m the one who spends like there is no tomorrow. I think it’s called “retail therapy!” Well, tomorrow came and our credit cards were maxed out (and to make matters worse, there were too many credit cards).

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”
Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV)

I said, “We need to read from Katie’s new book Be Revived.” I opened up to a chapter about the Grace Court, and read the whole chapter out loud. We did the activations together, then prayed afterwards. For the first time, worrying, “Will God provide or not,” was not my automatic response. We both went on, completely forgetting about our declaration in the Grace Court, and didn’t even think about it.  Katie’s book is very anointed. I believe that anointing put us in a new place of peace that did not allow one anxious thought about our financial needs.

“Do not be anxious about anything…”
Philippians 4:6 (NIV)

About three weeks later, I received a call from my sister. Her husband is doing amazingly well in his businesses and they wanted to give to us out of their blessings. They knew we could use extra finances to pay off credit cards, and they were now out of debt and wanted us to experience the same. So, they gave us a gift, not a loan, and it was a huge amount! We were able to pay off several credit cards and bank an amount as a cushion, and are trying not to use that cushion.

The goodness of God astounded us! We knew this gift was a direct result of going to the Grace Court and repenting of making our own decisions, making wrong purchases, and being rebellious to spend money as we wanted. This gift challenged us to believe that we needed to learn a lesson, not repeat the same financial mistakes, and be better stewards of our finances.

“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
Matthew 6:33 (ESV)

We have been giving to ministries for years. But, there was something about going into the Grace Court and doing everything Katie said to do. After all, the book’s wisdom comes from God, through a woman in ministry who has overcome many financial trials, and knows that your soul needs to be healed to handle finances properly.

Who is in control? God is! There is something about serving God that transforms us. He set up holy boundaries regarding finances in His Word. If we follow them, we are blessed. “Stuff” is no longer an idol. We want to love Him more and more and no longer worship “stuff”, but worship the King!

There is complete peace when loving God, for you learn to trust Him with everything! “Stuff” cannot do this; it is an idol, deaf and dumb. Stuff can’t love you, protect you, or even talk to you. God can and does. Our life can only be complete and fulfilled when we are surrendered to His will. Then we can fulfill our expected end!
Jeremiah 29:11

Do you recall a time when you did not allow God to be in control of your life? What made you realize that you had done that? How did you relinquish that control? Let us know about it by sharing below! 

Comments (7)
Cindy D May
Posted at 19:08h, 28 December Reply

That verse, so well known--lean not on your own understanding. That is what I had to change. And I know I haven't arrived. But it's interesting how it's so natural to think leaning on our own understanding, or the understanding our parents taught us, is "wisdom." For me, it's usually reading a book that collects all of the Scriptures on a subject and teaches on it that really renews my mind in that area. I have been the more frugal, but my husband was the spender. It reflected our upbringing. When we read Randy Alcorn's "Money, Possessions and Eternity", I was shocked to hear how much God had to say about money--and I grew up reading the Bible, but somehow it wasn't transferring from head to heart and hands. Hearing his word on one subject, and reminding myself that human wisdom is not wisdom at all, led us to the decision to become debt-free in 2007. We were debt-free with our cars and credit card, but had been taught by our parents to buy a home and not waste money on rent. It sounds so right, but it doesn't work, because it's not God's way. HIs way is no debt---and definitely giving at minimum a tithe, and giving as often and as much as we can. In 2007, 2 years after the first real estate market crash, we were $3 million in debt with properties, our main home. When we sold our home, and moved into a condo (to rent), I was so sure that we would never own another home. We had overbought, over decorated, and while we paid far less for the rented condo than the huge mortgage payments on houses that were upside down.... 2 years later in 2009, the market really bottomed out. The crazy thing....my husband is a realtor! We sold our $500,000 home for $350,000 and with that one took our outstanding debt so we would not short the bank. And in just those 2 years, we became debt-free, purchasing a home for less than $50,000----in a different location, but the freedom we felt was worth every bit of loss of dignity or pride as far as where we lived. And now 10 years later, the house has quintupled in value. Only God could do all this. The blessing always follows obedience. I'm so thankful for the things my parents taught me that matched Scripture. And now I'm thankful to know that ALL debt is not God's way. And his blessings are generous and kind. The Bible has become to me a book I want to ingest. It's not just a box to check, but following it can save us from everything the enemy wants to do to destroy us. I just love God, now that I understand who He really is, instead of believing the lies of the enemy. Every single verse is packed with power. I want a flash-drive to download it into me! Nothing is impossible with God. I ask Him for crazy things---well, crazy by man's standard, but I think wise according to what this wonderful book teaches us.

Thelma
Posted at 03:50h, 18 December Reply

Thanks you for sharing that Gail. I am so glad God meets us where we are!

GERALD J OLSESKI,JR,CM,DD
Posted at 03:24h, 18 December Reply

Nice Job Gail. There was one time,this was before I was ordained. The year was 1991. I was a freshman in high school. It was a rough time for me. When I ended up in the hospital for sever depression. I love God and believed in HIM, but I lacked to trust. Looking back on, that I was wrong not to trust God. But back then I was really hurting. I was in so much emotional pain. Today I trust HIM with my whole heart and soul. God I am sorry I did not trust you back then. Please for give me for that. God thank you, for healing me and for setting me free, from my emotional pain. God thank you for sending me to help others, online. God continue to bless Pastor Katie and her team. In Jesus Name I pray. Amen.

Jim
Posted at 01:36h, 18 December Reply

Thank You Katie for your devotionals. I identify with much of the things that you present here. This devotional is a good one and hits home. Basically though I do worship, praise the Father, Lord Jesus , Holy Spirit every single day I am carrying a load so big it has been crushing me for years. 80% of my income goes to paying back with massive interest what I thought would be temporary loans for my Trucking business in Alaska. But long winters, lost jobs, etc, put me in that place. It actually started when I was full time in an Assembly of God church doing everything there including often filling in for Pastors in the pulpit, teaching adult classes, Men's ministry leader, Use to lead worship, Even taught the teen age classes for several years, as well as massive amount of church grounds work. But I was single and lonely all those years. At one point the door of lust opened in my life. I didn't commit fornication or Adultery but I sure did in my heart and mind. All of that I have renounced ,repented, totally turned away, even know Jesus totally loves me and forgives me for that time I was weak in my life. So I established everything I use to preach is all true, sinners need a Savior I use to think it was those guys I was sharing with, then I came to know it was totally me everyday that needs the Savior just as much as all the people I shared Christ with. Anyway Thank You for continuing to send me the devotions. At 65 I'm still working, collecting some retirement because I have to, didn't want to but, still trucking, mechanic work, splitting firewood, whatever it takes, I always tell people I plan to live 120 years and my Strength not abated and I eye not dim like Moses ,unless the Lord says come home Hey that's perfectly fine to. He knows. My prayer and hope in the Lord these days is to FLIP the % to 80% taking care of doing the things of life and 20% at the most paying back the debts. I really pray the Lord would deliver me from 100% of the debt. That is actually what I appeal for every single day. I have no question Jimbo here has tried to manage and figure out his life, fix all my own mistakes, etc, Totally the way I was raised by well intended Christian parents and generally the way that family always does things. Oh Yes I went through several years of drinking. partying, smoking, you name it until I was about 20 the Lord got hold of my life traveling cross country on a M/C trip of all things, I was a fighter, a cusser, And Redheaded hot head in those days. Had long hair, a beard, looked like a viking. Well Scandinavian background so makes sense Okay Sorry for all the info TMI I know but Thanks again and God Bless I appreciate your Prayers Jim

BRIAN HARRIS
Posted at 21:30h, 17 December Reply

JESUS CHRIST LOVES YOU AND I LOVE YOU TOO! I WAS DATING A WOMAN THAT SEEMED TO BE WAYWARD, SO I WENT ON A FAST AND PRAYER ABOUT HER. THREE PROPHETS THAT DID NOT KNOW MY SITUATION ALL SAID OUT OF NOWHERE “SON GOD IS SAYING LEAVE HER ALONE”! THIS CONFIRMED WHAT I FELT IN MY SPIRIT SO I STRAIGHTWAY BROKE UP WITH HER! AFTER THE PAST 15 YEARS OF UNSUCCESSFUL DATING AS A CHRISTIAN I FELT GOD CALLING ME TO MATTHEW 6:33 BUT SEEK YE FIRST THE KINGDOM OF GOD, AND HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS; AND ALL THESE THINGS SHALL BE ADDED UNTO YOU. THIS WAS CONFIRMED BY SEVERAL PREACHERS SO I DID THIS MORE SO THAN THE PAST. AFTER THIS I STARTED READING THE BIBLE MORE, WORSHIPPING AND PRAISING GOD MORE, I FASTED AND PRAYED MORE! THEN PROPHETS THAT DID NOT EVEN KNOW ME SAID GOD IS SENDING ME MY WIFE AND BRIDGING THE GAP BETWEEN US, GLORY ALLELUIA THANK YOU JESUS! THEN I READ THE BOOK “FACE to FACE APPEARANCES from JESUS”. AFTER READING FACE to FACE APPEARANCES from JESUS, GOD OPENED UP MY DREAMS TO BECOME MORE VIVID, CLEARER, AND HAS GIVEN ME OVER FOUR DREAMS ABOUT MY WIFE ALLELUIA GLORY BE TO GOD!!! THESE THINGS NEVER HAPPENED TO ME UNTIL I STOPPED WORRYING ABOUT THINGS, STOPPED TRYING TO CONTROL THEM, AND LET GOD BE IN CONTROL MATTHEW 6:33! MY OLD PASTOR USE TO SAY “DO NOT PUT THE CART BEFORE THE HORSE” AND THATS JUST WHAT I WAS DOING! YES MEN CAN GO OUT AND FIND A WIFE BUT THERE IS ANOTHER TYPE OF MAN THAT REMAINS STILL SEEKING FIRST THE KINGDOM OF GOD AND THEN LIKE ADAM, GOD WILL BRING THE WIFE TO THE MAN; LIKE ISSAC, GOD WILL BRING THE WIFE TO THE MAN; LIKE BOAZ, GOD WILL BRING THE WIFE TO THE MAN AMEN! GOD KNOWS I DO PSALM 37:4 DELIGHT THYSELF ALSO IN THE LORD; AND HE SHALL GIVE THER THE DESIRES OF THINE HEART. GOD KNOWS IT IS THE DESIRE OF MY HEART TO RECEIVE MANIFESTATION OF MY WIFE, GET MARRIED, AND US TO RAISE OUR CHILDREN TOGETHER WHICH WE WILL DO IN JESUS CHRIST MIGHTY NAME AMEN!

Pamela
Posted at 17:56h, 17 December Reply

I am so thankful for God’s grace in my life. My husband is like the lady in this story he has always been bailed out of his over spending by his mother, until she passed away. I had always had to plan to get things because I didn’t come from a family who was able to do that. I found myself angry at my husband because he would just buy whatever he wanted without any consideration for out children or me. I realized what the scripture meant by not being unevenly yoked . Even though I was not the one spending the credit and being out of control we are one . I had to pray for both of us and repent too. God has delivered my husband from this mostly and this has therefore delivered me too. We are now living a debt free life because of trusting Jesus Christ and his promises. Thank you for sharing this story somehow it helps to remove shame knowing that God is in control and that other people have experienced the same problem and deliverance

Geri Riggs
Posted at 17:39h, 17 December Reply

Awesome testimony. I too have had too many charges to our credit card and went to the grace court and God has made a way for me to pay off the debt at 0 percent interest. I don't mind doing going without to do that, because I don't want to go back to letting the spending get out of control, although I am very happy for you that you received a financial blessing. That could happen to us too I know. But right now, I am so grateful He has made a way, because a few weeks ago it looked like there was no way!

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