Dreamers of the Day

"All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that all was vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dream with open eyes, and make it possible." -T.E. Lawrence, "The Seven Pillars of Wisdom"

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Control

“You wonder if your chance’ll ever come
or if you are stuck in square one.”
-Square One, Coldplay

Because of the generosity and hospitality of friends, I was able to ride a jet ski several weeks ago. These were not normal jet skis, but Volkswagens on water. With illegally large engines and calm waters, my friend and I flew around a lake. Bored with the typical maneuvers, we tried new moves. Our goal was to create the largest waves and my friend was creating nice waves. I followed his lead and at high speeds we would make sharp turns to send water flying. In my quest for the “large wave” I inevitably increased my speed. At about 45-50 mph, I decided to crank the steering and skip the “craft.” Not taking into consideration the lake water still on me, my inexperience and the laws of aerodynamics, I blindly performed the move. I have always wondered what flying without wings would be like and for the first time I experienced it. Fifteen feet later I skipped across the water and by God’s grace, was able to try again.
I pondered this moment because it awakened something in me. In my past, when confronted with “failures” or mistakes, I would try harder next time. As Jim, the independent mountain man in The Man from Snow River states about horse riding, “If you fall off, get back on.”
Get back on. There is nothing wrong with perseverance, hard work and determination, but before the second try, I first am learning about losing control. When I fail or when life “hits the fan”, my initial reaction is to gain control. Whether it is in finances, possessions, driving my car, running or friendships, I try to regroup and gain control. Losing control is one of the most painful things. Yet in the moment of losing control, I have learned to ask my self the questions, “Why did I lose control?”
Recently, like the jet ski, I have lost control of the future. My plans have dissipated and left me wondering. It is never a pleasant thing, but as I ponder the situation, the answer to “Why did I lose control” can be helpful. First, I may have deceived myself into thinking I was in control of everything to begin with. Because we are made in His image, I believe there is a certain realm of things that we are “in control of.” Spending money, words, actions and the amount of toothpaste I keep in my bathroom are examples of such areas. But I have found that the more possessions I accumulate, the easier it is to deceive me that I am in control of everything.
Going back to the jet ski, I did not fly off because I chose to fly off. I flew off because there was a force greater than mine and I was not aware of it. It was the point of pain, flying off, that helped me understand this knowledge. You can know of this force by experiencing it or watching others experience it. It exists—and much is the same with my life. I can try to “gain control” of my life and keep it safe and domesticated by filling it with situations where I can be in control. Or I can allow my life to be controlled by the Spirit and be led in situations that I have no control over. The former is much easier than the later, but in the former I tend to feel stuck in “square one.”
Why did I lose control….because there is Something greater than me. In confronting uncontrollable situations, do not react, but ponder where your heart is in the matter. Do not do what I did and run away from the pain by controlling other things, but cling to Him who is in control. He does not allow these experiences to harm us, but expose more of the truth. I am in control of certain areas of my life, but these areas are ephemeral. The areas that are everlasting are out of my control.

3 Comments:

At 1:29 PM, Blogger Emily said...

Jason!

You posted. And fantastically, at that. Yea! Thanks for the words...

Ephemeral: Excellent word. :)

By the way, are you aware that you have to be a registered blogger to leave comments on your site? I much prefer remaining 'anonymous'...

 
At 2:12 PM, Blogger amy said...

I must ditto Emily...everything she said...including the 'anonymous' section.

I've been secretly watching your site waiting for you to post again. Finally...!

It's been nice to get a 'wrongwaymayes' perspective since we don't read it in the emails anymore. ;)

 
At 3:12 PM, Blogger Creth said...

I'm still trying to gain control.

Even when I think I've "given it up"

...it's such a power struggle, and I'm always going to lose... I hope I'm gonna lose...

I hope that the Lord truly never leaves me, for then and only then do I have nothing.

 

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