by Rick Warren — October 13, 2021
From Connecting With God: The Lord's Prayer
“Let go of your concerns! Then you will know that I am God. I rule the nations. I rule the earth."
Psalm 46:10 (GW)
That choice is a battle because there are things in life you want to control. You want to make your own rules. But relief from stress always starts with letting God be God. It always starts with saying, “God, I’m giving up control, because only you can control the things that are out of control in my life.”
The number one reason you’re under stress is because you’re trying to control things that only God can control. You can’t control your spouse, your kids, your job, your future, or your past. When you try to play God, it puts you in opposition to God. Not only are you going to lose that conflict, but you’re also going to be tired—and stressed.
Psalm 46:10 says, “Let go of your concerns! Then you will know that I am God. I rule the nations. I rule the earth” (GW).
I don’t know what you’ll face this week. You don’t know either. But I can already tell you what God wants you to do: Let go of control and trust that he is in control.
Let go and know! This is the first step to serenity.
When people face out-of-control situations and feel stressed, we often go to one of two extremes. For some of you, the more out-of-control your life gets, the harder you try to control it. Others do the exact opposite: You just give up and have a pity party.
Both of those reactions to stress are foolish. They don’t work. Instead of being a victim or becoming hyper-controlling, you need to pray a prayer of surrender.
Millions of people pray the Serenity Prayer, which is based on the Lord’s Prayer, but most have never read the last eight lines to the prayer: “Living one day at a time, enjoying one moment at a time; accepting hardship as a pathway to peace; taking, as Jesus did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it; trusting that You will make all things right if I surrender to Your will; so that I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with You forever in the next. Amen.”
That’s where the power is! Power comes when you surrender to God anything you’ve been trying to control. And that will lead you to living a life of serenity.