Lesson 13: The wash cycle belongs to God

directorHave you ever wished you could force God’s hand? Wave a wand? Have the ability to literally go back in time –  in a sense play movie maker with your life. This is a bit of a rhetorical question as I already know anyone reading this is nodding as these questions are being read. Sometimes you hit a disastrous low spot in your life and you begin to focus on all the regrets, all the things you would do differently if you had your life over. It can get quite depressing and it never results in feeling fabulous or like you deserve any kind of medal. No, it just leaves a bad taste in your mouth – something like day old sardines in garlic – and it makes you wonder if in a few years’ time you may be looking back at this very moment wishing you had made some other ulterior choices.

When us human beings want something, we want it and we want it immediately  Our instant gratification philosophy and habitual living leads us to place where we will quite fashion out some kind of 6-inch-nail plan just to make it happen. We connive and shift and shuffle just to organise a means to getting that “want” into our reality.

I have done that so many times in my life. In fact, it is most of those times, now looking back, that I would to do over. Sometimes the “want” is easy and happens with no fuss, no barriers, obstacles or problems, just simple clean sailing – “want’ delivered. It is those not so easy “wants” that we find ourselves in a little spin about.

wash cycle

So let’s say you have had your eye on a new washing machine. The old one is still great on the spin and rinse cycle is really doing the job just fine but you want the űber chic, black, shiny one that dispenses the washing powder and softener with the simple touch of a button. “how utterly divine da’ling…” So even though cash is a bit tight you do your sums and figure that if you put half on the credit card, half of the half on the overdraft, 50 bucks quietly loaned from the kids allowance and the rest out of the grocery money, it can be done… and you do it, ‘want’ delivered! The day comes for this fabulous washing machine to arrive. It is oh so shiny and it’s űber quiet too. It’s installed and washing all those clothes with such style – the only problem is you and the family are eating baked beans for the rest of the month and to make it just a little more exciting your spouse has just enthusiastically shared that the boss has been invited for one of your delicious 3 course dinners… Well you could always eat baked beans while watching a 3 course spin, rinse and clean cycle!

The moral of the story is that when your “wants” are feeling a little hard to come by – sometimes we just need to let go. Sometimes the path of least resistance (in these cases) leads to greater peace. There are going to be those times when the answer is “no, wait, no now or no never.

We need to be able to process, accept or submit to the greater will of God. Sometimes the very thing we are so determined to have is the very thing holding us back. Not because we aren’t meant to be blessed but because our focus is entirely off balance. It won’t spin properly even if you had the best űber machine on the market – when your life is off balance it will not flow… rinse, spit or wobble. Being off balance can only lead to the death of a wash cycle

When the dream, visions, desires or your passion becomes your entire focus and all decisions are based on this direction, you need to take a step back and review your heart.

What are you doing to make it happen?

Are you trying everything in your power to make it happen?

Are you lying awake at night stressing and panicking, searching for a way to make it possible?

Are you allowing this to consume your thinking and has it messed with your usually cheerful disposition?

Are you stressed, wound up, tired and weary?

Is what inspired your dream now becoming a load you feel unable to carry?

game control

If you answered yes to most of these questions, I am bravely going to state that it is 99% possible that this has become an idol in your heart. And how can I say this? Because I have just emerged from this understanding this myself and it’s not the first time that I have found myself realising this.

So it is time to take a step back and to take your hands off the controls, yes, you can do it…slowly but deliberately lift those hands off the controls, nice and steady…that’s it…now put them down at your side.

You and I just don’t have what it takes to play God. We are not the masters of the so called ‘wash cycle‘. You just don’t have the ability to see the picture He sees. So often these decisions and attempts to fix or propel the events forward, just end up slowing them down.So how do we get perspective on this situation? Maybe it’s time to ask yourself some frank questions and maybe it’s time to be blatantly honest with yourself, it seems to me this is always the most effective, be it tough policy.

1. Can I let go of this dream/desire?

2. If I do let go does it mean I have failed or that it will be lost forever?

3. Do I believe that God is in control or am I the only one that can make things happen?

4. What are the possibilities if I do let go?

5. Has being on control taken hold of me head and my heart?

6. How has it impacted me?

7. How has it impacted my family?

8. What do I need to do to get myself back on track and in balanced thinking?

9. How can I shift my thinking to do this?

10. What scripture/thoughts will keep me focused and positive?

11. Who can support me in being accountable to make the shift and keep it?

12. What do I believe my purpose is?

It’s time to shift your focus from self to God. You can’t expect the find peace or contentment when you are consumed with your stuff. You also can’t expect to have a balanced and clear perspective on your current situation if you are not willing to look honestly at yourself. The only time you can shift your current position is – not by manipulation of events or people – but by taking the steps to thinking differently, being honest with yourself and making the choice to change, one small step at a time.

God's  way signPlaying God is a tough game, which we clearly are not qualified to even attempt – we can never hope to compete with Him – after all He is the one who created the earth in just 7 days and we still trying to invent a decent non-stick frying plan in 2013. He has it in His hands and there is nothing we can or cannot do to move His hand – He alone knows the time that will be exactly perfect for us. If we would just stop our frantic panicking and fussing when it seems to be going wrong and is not aligning with our plans and expectations we would be able to see this.

If we would instead keep praying, praising and believing that He has our future carefully planned – He has plans to prosper us – Jeremiah 29 verse 11.

Trust that plan and instead of trying to play God why don’t you lean back and rest in God instead.

Wash, spin and rinse with style but most of all, with widom.  Just don’t give up, you are closer than you think!

Michelle

 

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3 comments

  1. Love the washing machine analogy! “Wash, spin and rinse with style but most of all, with wisdom.” Ha! The premise of putting our lives in God’s hands is one I do agree with in principle, however I see the application as a bit more “earthy”. Scriptures often call humans “God’s children” and say we are made in His image. So, how would you like your children, who are made in your image, Mich, to approach their lives? To that end I think we should allow God to work through us by our choices- simple to say and yet difficult to do. There is an old Country and Western song “Jesus Take the Wheel” where in a bad storm, the driver just lets go of the steering wheel and “lets” Jesus drive. I was a longhaul trucker in North America for many years and I can tell you it doesn’t work quite that way – but close. Some of the storms in which I’ve driven were not fit for humans to endure. And with millions of miles of experience , I found it was possible to keep my hands on the wheel and let God use my hands to drive – always worked out. It is my feeling that He does not want us to remove our hands from the wheel but rather to make choices with our hands that reflect His will. And, as simple as that sounds it is, as I am sure you know, exceedingly difficult to do. Anyway, great post – very thought provoking. Thank You!

    1. HI Paul – I agree – we cannot literally sit back and wait for God to do what it is we need to be doing – we have to ask Him to lead, guide and give us the discernment and wisdom, through His word, to do the right thing. I have found that waiting has been the busiest time of learning in my life. I like what you said about ‘our choices reflecting His will” that is post on. We don’t always get it right though…
      I would like my children to live a life that reflects God’s character – making choices that will bring life in abundance and not leave them broken and lost. In my mind letting go does not mean doing nothing it means to stop worrying and trusting that what I have done will bring blessing – even when I make the wrong choices – He is there to catch me and help me pick up the pieces…and as you say it is not easy to do

      I hope my spinning thinking makes sense…
      Be blessed and thank you for your wise words

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