"Today I am powerless, even though anointed king…"
-- II Samuel 3:39a
It's like a soft-shoe dance, really. Power and control. We spend hours, energy, education, money, values, and even our souls in order to have power and control in life. For some of us it's power and control over others that we seek. But what is undeniably common among us all is the desire to have power and control over our own lives. Much of the angst, anger, anxiety, ambivalence, depression and degradation in our lives is a result of feeling powerless and out of control. We struggle within ourselves and with others to establish or re-establish our dominance and find ourselves retreating and feeling embarrassed when that dominance is stripped from us.
The way to ease this inner chaos is to observe and relax. When we are able to observe the fact that we do not have control or power in a particular situation in our lives, there is an immediate release of tension. When we refuse to identify our powerlessness, however, we struggle even harder to gain or maintain what is not really ours. Once we have observed and there has been a release of tension, we can relax into the situation, allowing ourselves to be carried gently along like a carefree twig bobbing and floating over the rocks and stones of a shallow stream. When we do these two things, observe and relax, we create an empty space within our soul, a pocket into which the precious jewels of surprising grace can be poured. As we allow our souls to remain empty, our eyes will feast on the brilliance of what might never have been ours had we been in control - had we been powerful. There are times to exercise power and control, and there are times when power and control get in the way of grace. The task is to learn to distinguish between the two.
O God, if truth be told, I have only to watch the wonder of the changing creation to know who really has power and control. Keep me in that soft, supple place of humility before you.
These meditations by Renee Miller first appeared at explorefaith.org
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