Romans 12:12

"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer."

Love this! This is MY verse for 2013! Every time I become dissatisfied with my stage of life (i.e. living in The Barn instead of a "normal" house, husband's books not being published YET) I'm going to preach this scripture to myself.

I'm currently reading a YouVersion Bible study about surrender. I sought out this topic because being the control freak that I am, I often struggle with surrendering MY plan to God's plan. If you don't believe me, just ask my husband. He's so sweet though, he'd tell you how far I've come in the last 13 years. I have this timeline in my mind and reality just isn't matching up with it, which leads to frustration and some days even sadness.

This past Sunday was one of those days! I started barking out my plan to my husband out of no where. He asked me if I had prayed about it. Well, this was convicting (because of course I hadn't) so I responded with defiance and anger. It was bad, y'all, and he was like, "Where is this coming from?" Ironically, I hadn't read my Bible Sunday morning. Scott and I had this "discussion" Sunday night. Monday morning I woke up and didn't read my Bible. Again. Still being defiant, I suppose. I do my best deep thinkin' on my commute to work and realized that for some reason I associate surrender with weakness. This is a lie. Tuesday, I open up the study I'd skipped for 2 days and guess what?? Sunday's lesson was on SURRENDERING!!! Ha! If only I'd read it on the intended day. This fits the definition of irony, right?

I think a lot of this dissatisfaction is coming from fear too. This year marks the 10 year anniversary of Scott's quadruple bypass. I vividly remember sitting with him in Dr. Taylor's office and the doctor saying there was a 50% chance Scott would live ten years before needing another heart surgery. At the time, Scott said he refused to go through it again. Now that we're closer to that possibility, it is not unthinkable, but at those grim words we kind of came up with this TEN YEAR PLAN of our hopes and dreams. Well, it's crunch time and there are goals undone, unaccomplished. And I think that's where all this silliness is stemming from. How does that saying go... "Man can make his plans, but The Lord..." I never paid attention to the last part! I just kept making my plans.

So, in my study today the author asked the reader to ask ourselves what God is trying to teach us while we're waiting. I've never bothered to ask. I wasn't teachable. So, now I'm clinging to this verse in Romans because its a life-changer; it's life-giving. If I will just "Be JOYFUL in HOPE,
Patient in Affliction, Faithful in PRAYER" then God's plan for our life can happen and guess what?! It's a BETTER plan, exceedingly better than mine.

Are there any other control freaks out there? What is God trying to teach YOU about HIS Plan?
Any recovered planners that could offer us wisdom on our surrender-quest? Will you pray for me as I try?


  1. Stace, I saw such beauty in your transparency. Hearing what the Shepherd is saying becomes clearer as we shed our wants to His will. Joining you in prayer and for me to also becoming more transparent. Love you!

  2. Why is it so hard for us to learn that God isn't dumb, he isn't weak, and he doesn't hate us (or favor someone else over us)?

    I think this is a universal struggle, not just for "control freaks."

    It was Adam and Eve's struggle.

    Don't you think it was David's struggle when he couldn't/wouldn't surrender the Bathsheba moment (and its ramifications) to God?

    Thanks for sharing your story. There are a LOT of us who will be blessed by it.