Giving Up Control

Giving Up Control

I recently had one of those embarrassing experiences that we dread as moms. I was in a hurry, but I needed to run into the pharmacy and pick up a prescription. I rushed the C’s out of the car and into the store and knew right away it was going to be bad. First, there was a line. We would have to wait, a recipe for disaster with toddlers. Second, I had just carried Caleb (age 1 1/2) instead of putting him in a stroller, and he immediately began squirming and squealing to get down. Connor (age 4) quickly found a display of canes {because they always have those at the pharmacy…?} and started pulling them out of their bin one by one. While still wrestling with Caleb, I tried to pull Con away from the canes and he obliged, only to start playing with a swinging door that separated the pharmacists from the rest of the store.

When it was finally my turn, I told the pharmacist my name over Caleb’s yelps, his hands and feet still flailing in all directions. She looked… and looked… and looked. And then she proceeded to inform me that no one had called in a prescription for me. Embarrassed by my kids’ behavior and annoyed because the nurse had specifically told me that she had already submitted my prescription to that pharmacy, I hauled the C’s back out to the car to try to figure it out.

I called my doctor {while standing outside the car since both boys were screaming inside}, we figured out what had happened, and she agreed to immediately resubmit my prescription. Taking a deep breath, I got back into the car, calmly explaining to my boys that we would be going back into the pharmacy and setting some ground rules for their behavior. Having learned my lesson the first time, I put Caleb into the umbrella stroller, asked Connor to hold my hand, and off we went. It was a totally different experience. Caleb sat quietly in his seat, occasionally pointing to an item in the store and naming what it was. Connor stayed by my side and waited patiently while the pharmacist filled my prescription. I paid for it, and we headed back out to the car.

As I drove home, reflecting on what had just happened, I realized that the two drastically different scenarios that had just played out were a lot like my spiritual life. When I’m rushing around trying to do everything on my own, too “busy” to stop and seek the Lord first, my plans often get thwarted and I end up like a screaming toddler, frustrated because things aren’t working out and doing everything in my power to do what I want to do. But when I take the time to set some “ground rules” with the Lord by reading His Word and spending time in prayer, I’m able to have an eternal perspective. Things still get crazy sometimes, but instead of those situations turning into a big, chaotic mess, I’m able to take a step back and give them up to God.

God didn’t just create us and then leave us to fend for ourselves. We were made to be in relationship with Him.  He wants us to spend time with Him and invest in that relationship. In return, our “spiritual fruit”—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control—thrives and we are able to live more purposeful, intentional lives, lives focused on Him (Galatians 5:22-23).

So what will we choose today? Will we continue to try to control our own lives, a road destined for failure? (Believe me, I’ve tried!!!) Or will we give it all to God, invest everything in that relationship, and allow Him to be in control?

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14 Comments

  1. now at home mom says:

    Two complete different scenarios Abby! I’m glad you were able to set rules the second time because you were more composed. Also glad your little boys listened to you. I can relate very much to your post today. When I’m in a rush or upset at something and bring Nate along with me somewhere, he doesn’t behave and I don’t always know what to do about it, I should calm down but it’s difficult.
    So beautiful and true what you wrote about control and let God control situations in our life. I agree with you about investing in our relationship with him every day! lovely post Abby! I hope you will have a great time this Mother’s day weekend with your beautiful family! 🙂

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thank you, Ingrid! Those little guys are tricky sometimes, right? They definitely keep me on my toes! Your sweet comments are always so encouraging to me–thank you so much for making me smile! Have a wonderful Mother’s Day with cute little Nate!

      ~Abby =)

  2. Sonya Barker~AtHomeWithTheBarkers says:

    What a perfect comparison Abby! I’m afraid to say I have been that toddler trying to get my way… plain and simple, it doesn’t work! Loved this post!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks, Sonya! Sadly, I am the difficult toddler more often than I’d care to admit! I’m a work in progress, that’s for sure! 😉 Hope you have a WONDERFUL Mother’s Day weekend with your family!

      ~Abby =)

  3. Lauren @ The Thinking Closet says:

    Wow, I love how you were able to learn a spiritual lesson from this situation with your sons…and to see yourself in them and their behavior. That takes maturity, girl! I tend to struggle with control in my relationship with God and your words are definitely convicting. Thank you for pointing me to God and for the important reminder to submit to His will, so that I can have a much smoother visit to the metaphorical pharmacy of life!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks, Lauren! Apparently I’m supposed to be the teacher, but I learn way more from them than I ever expected! God certainly has his own ways of teaching us what we need to know! 🙂 Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

      ~Abby =)

  4. Gabby Andrea says:

    Hi! Happy Mother’s Day! Thank you so much for this reminder. I’m a big planner but usually with big projects. Reading your post told me to “plan” on even the daily things. (Bells go off in my head). Why I never thought of this before, I have no idea but now I know it and will give it a try! Thank you, again!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks so much, Gabby! Hope you had a wonderful weekend!

      ~Abby =)

  5. Gloria Phillips (@simplygloria1) says:

    I love everything about this sweet post. I love the message. Happy Mother’s Day to you!
    (I’m your newest bloglovin follower)

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks so much, Gloria! I hope you had a wonderful Mother’s Day!

      ~Abby =)

  6. Erica {let why lead} says:

    What an apt analogy. Based on the title, I thought you were going to talk about letting go of controlling your kids (like letting them make messes), but I appreciated even more that in the end you brought it around to you (and by association, me – the reader). Best to you!

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks so much, Erica! I probably do need to let go and let them make more messes too, lol! Hope you had a wonderful weekend–thanks for stopping by!

      ~Abby =)

  7. lindanortje says:

    Thank you for joining us at our Let’s Get Social Sunday Party !

    Linda
    With A Blast

    1. abbylawson says:

      Thanks for hosting, Linda!! Hope you had a wonderful weekend!

      ~Abby =)

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