Control/Self-Control

August 6, 2019

“God writes upon our hearts the knowledge of His will… Our hearts must yearn for the things of God. The hunger to do His will is the key…we must seek God’s will in all that we do. This means turning every area of life over to Him.” (St. Cyril of Alexandria)

 

“Life's circumstances can make you bitter or better…There are a few different ways we can respond to them. We can let them control us; we can try to control them; or we can trust that God is in control no matter what and, with this understanding and discernment respond, to them as best we can.” (Rev. Fr. Charles Joanides, Sacramental Living Ministries)

 

“There are so many techniques and approaches today that teach us how to master our stress and anxiety, to take control of ourselves and our problems. Christianity teaches us turn our problems over to God. It is not an abdication of responsibility, quite the contrary. It is taking full responsibility without slipping into delusion that we can control and solve all our problems by our own power. To taste Christ’s promised peace by “outsourcing” our problems to God is a precious gift most of us do not accept.” (Sacramental Living Ministries)

 

“Yet do we welcome all that life brings? Do we trust enough in God? I dare say no, at least not wholeheartedly, though maybe if we did, we would find joy and inner peace. The “seasons” of our lives have many parts, including our day-to-day relationships with family members, friends, and co-workers, as well as the unexpected events that occur and the people whom God allows us to encounter. How do we react or respond, especially to things that are out of our control? Do we have love in our hearts for our neighbour? Let us consider Christ and how He welcomed all people, all circumstances, and everything that may have been unexpected. He engaged each person; He never turned anyone away regardless of how He was treated. And when it came time for Him to be arrested, He accepted this too; He trusted God in all things…So how can we trust more in God?...Releasing control is a necessary step in trusting God.” (Presvytera Ourania Chatzis)

 

“It is a great goodness to submit to the will of God. Then your soul is filled with the Lord only, and it has no other thought, it prays to God with a special purity, and feels the love of God, even though the body may suffer. When the soul has submitted wholly to the will of God, then the Lord Himself begins to lead it, and the soul learns directly from God, where before it had learnt from teachers and Scripture. But it is very rare that the Teacher of a soul should be the Lord Himself through the Holy Spirit, and few know of this, except those who live according to the will of God.” (St. Silouan the Athonite)

 

“God's Providence controls the universe. It is present everywhere. Providence is the sovereign Logos of God, imprinting form on the unformed materiality of the world, making and fashioning all things. Matter could not have acquired an articulated structure were it not for the directing power of the Logos Who is the Image, Intellect, Wisdom, and Providence of God.” (St. Anthony the Great)

 

“We call the Lord Jesus “Pantocrator,” which means “almighty,” or “ruler of all.”…What, then, is under our Lord’s feet? Everything – every achievement and empire of mankind, and even the evil demons who oppose God – is under the sway of the Ruler of all. The limited capacity of nature’s powers is exposed by Christ’s exaltation. Death, life, the farthest stars and galaxies, are all beneath His feet. None may resist His reign eternally. For the moment, however, He is restraining the full exercise of His sovereignty, giving us the chance to turn to Him, to pledge our fidelity and love to Him, amending our lives and living not for ourselves but unto Him as Savior and God.” (Dynamis 9/17/2018)

 

“Out of His high regard for humanity, the Sovereign of the universe left something under our own control and of which each of us is the sole master. I mean the will, a faculty which is free from bondage and independent, and is grounded in the freedom of the mind.” (St. Gregory of Nyssa)

 

“In doing God’s will, there must be partnership between our efforts and God’s control. He wants us to use our minds, to seek the advice of others, and to plan. Nevertheless, the results are up to Him. Planning, then, helps us act God’s way.” (Life Application Study Bible, Proverbs 16:1)

 

“A person who exercises self-control will not easily succumb to discouragement or the temptation to quit. Viewing all circumstances as coming from [i.e., permitted by] the hand of a loving Father who is in control of all things is the secret of perseverance.” (Foundation Study Bible, 2 Peter 1:6)

 

“God is alive and in control of the world. We cannot see all that God is doing, and we cannot see all that God will do. But we can be assured that He is God and will do what is right. Knowing this can give us confidence and hope in a confusing world…All we can truly rely on is faith in a God who is in control.” (Life Application Study Bible, Habakkuk 3:19, Jane Jarrell)

 

 “Ambiguity is all about loss of control. Control is a defense mechanism against immaturity and fear. We fear the things we are not mature enough to handle…Embracing ambiguity challenges our need to understand and control reality. After all, we are rational creatures with a God-given intellect. When we begin to embrace ambiguity we become less rigid, less black-and-white in our thinking. We become softer. We become more kind.” (Albert S. Rossi)

 

“Fear trades self-control for a controlling spirit, every single time.” (Beth Moore)

 

“When pain and suffering come upon us, we finally see not only that we are not in control of our lives but that we never were.” (Pastor Timothy Keller)

 

“...God is sovereign and in control, while at the same time He is close and personal.” (Life Application Study Bible, Acts 17:27,28)