Do you ever have those days where you say or do something that you immediately regret?
I know I definitely have. In fact today was one of those days. I said something, and as soon as it came out, I wished that I could’ve taken it back. The problem is that I couldn’t. The damage had been done, and unfortunately, I had to and am still working to pick up the pieces. Anger and frustration with myself as well as embarrassment mixed together in a rather unpleasant feeling that made me want to bolt from the room. Not to mention it was the first time something like this had happened in this particular setting.
The worst part was that my words and actions completely shattered someone’s picture of who I was. I was no longer that person they thought I was all because I suddenly felt like I was drowning and just needed it all to stop.
I could blame it on too many hours at work, too much homework, too many things going on, not feeling good, but the reality was that several things had sent me spiraling and this particular situation simply sent me over the edge.
I’ve always been an overachiever and tend to put too much pressure on myself. I’ve always been a good student, and in somehow convinced myself that if I didn’t do well in school, not only would I disappoint myself but I would also let my parents done. The thing is that my parents don’t care whether I get an ‘A’ or a ‘B’ on an exam, but somehow it has been warped in my head to think that they do. What they do care about is how much effort I put into things and they aren’t afraid to call me out if they think I’m not putting in enough effort (which is a good thing, mom and dad). So this morning when I found out that I got B’s on two exams that I thought I did well on, I went into panic mode thinking I was going to let them down and they were going to be upset. I didn’t understand what had gone wrong for me to school the way I did. Cue the beginning of the spinning.
I also tend to overcommit and do more things that I have the energy and the time for. Some days I don’t even know how I balance it all, but somehow I manage going to school fulltime and working nearly 20 hours a week. The thing is at this point in the semester, it begins to catch up to me. I am exhausted, and the idea of working six hours today seemed overwhelming. Mentally, I was too tired to even try to stop the rapidly building panic with my grades.
End with the fact that my personal life seems to just be one crisis after another, and I’ve been trying to handle it all myself, you get an amazing recipe for disaster.
So what is the point of me even telling you about this?
The point is that there is one thing that could’ve kept me from spiraling. Something simple, but for someone as type A and controlling as I am, it is extremely hard.
Give up my control.
I’ve often described my life as the very end of a Jenga game. All the blocks are balanced on one block that is wobbly at best. Except every time the wobble wins, and the blocks that were so carefully balanced come tumbling down. My life is a lot like that; something causes that one block to wobble, and because I am human and imperfect, all my carefully balanced blocks come tumbling down in a rather spectacular fashion.
But the thing is there is a much better foundation out there then a single wobbly human Jenga block. God tells us over and over in the Bible that He is our foundation, our rock, our solid ground. Jesus tells the parable of the man who built his house on the sand and the man who built his house on the rock. The man who built his house on the sand ends up devastated when the house so beautifully constructed comes falling down when the floods come.
The thing is, we are often that while we wish we were the man who built the house on the rock, we are more often the man who built his house on the sand. When things come tumble down, we look up at the sky, shaking our fists and asking God why.
Like I said, I am very particular about things. I have my routines, and when something changes, I’m not always the first to adapt. So the idea of giving up control, even to God, who I know has my absolute best interest at heart, is terrifying. But the really hard part isn’t giving up my dreams or my aspiration, but rather the simple day to day things. It’s hard for me to see how God is working in the small things, and to give those things up to him seems like a big chance.
The thing is on the days when I consciously give up control to Him in the morning, I avoid saying or doing things that I later regret. On those days, I have more self-control and patience with people, and things that would normally bother me hardly make a difference. So if anything, today while it was horrible, it reminded me that I have to give up control and even better, I get to give up control.
God is never going to let me down, and His ways are always better then mine. When I give up control to Him and let Him led me, amazing things happen. Imagine if that happened every day of my life. I don’t know about you, but that sounds way better then the mess I made today.