Journaling has made the process of reflecting on this past summer much easier. Only through reviewing what I wrote then, could I possibly remember each stage of this growth in detail. For instance, it was July 28, 2013 that I had a significant insight into how my drive to stay in control was distancing myself from God.
It actually started the day before – which also happened to be the 20th anniversary of my diagnosis with diabetes! I heard the John Michael Talbot song Come Worship the Lord on Pandora, while out on a walk. Glancing down at the screen, I saw “(Psalm 95)” next to the song title. The words and melody are so moving and humbling. Returning home, I immediately opened the bible to Psalm 95. Reading through this psalm of praise, I thought about the majesty of God and our privilege to sing joyfully to him.
At church the very next day, I did a double take when I saw that Pastor Brian was preaching on Psalm 95. Simply a coincidence? Sure, maybe. But, it sure felt like I was supposed to be learning a lesson from this verse.
Pastor Brian put these words in an entirely new perspective for me. He explained that the word worship is a form of the English term for worth and therefore means “to ascribe ultimate value to something.” Hence, since God is all powerful and perfect, we should ascribe ultimate value to Him, the Creator.
The sermon went on to pointedly state that we are all worshiping something. It’s either the one true and living God (the Creator) or it’s something of His creation. Anything of creation that we worship, instead of God, will ultimately distort and destroy us.
This led to the obvious question: “What have you been worshiping as Lord?”
The realization hit me – I’d been worshiping myself. Or, maybe more accurately, I valued my own sense of control, my planning, productivity, ability, and happiness, above all else. This made me think of Matthew 6:24 – No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other… Although this verse speaks specifically of the contrast between God and money, the lesson seems to be applicable.
How could I surrender to God as my master when I was occupied with keeping control over my life and happiness?
This helped me to reframe my unhealthy desire to plan and control the future as a sinful stance toward the Lord. Basically I was declaring myself capable of maintaining my life and happiness rather than depending on the will of the Creator. Since this is clearly a ridiculous and illogical behavior- I felt affirmed that this was something I desparately needed to change.