The Ongoing Struggle with Control (And How God Answered My Prayer)

Book on Control- Excellent Christian non-fiction!

I heard the sound of glass rattling in the kitchen. Peeking in, I saw my guy kindly unloading the dishwasher.

My first response?

To *almost* inform him he was doing it wrong.

How does one unload a dishwasher incorrectly?

By breaking everything? By dumping dirt on the plates? Placing everything in the cereal cupboard?

Nope.

He was unloading the top rack, which holds mugs that sometimes collect water, before the bottom rack, which is perfectly dry.

As this ridiculous correction formed on my lips, God clapped His hand over my mouth. (Thank you, Jesus!)

See, moments earlier I’d started reading a book titled It’s All Under Control.

My finger was tracing a sidebar showcasing women’s reactions to the concept of the book.

One of the remarks read: “Control isn’t an issue for me, I just like having things go my way.”


I slipped on a beloved t-shirt a dear friend gave me. It’s front reads: “Writing is my superpower.”

Inside, I hoped that shirt would help me find the words that seemed to have gone missing. Writer’s block had been building up with every brick of “I’ve got this” I’d been laying in my too-tight schedule.

Trading word-production for word-absorption, I opened It’s All Under Control to discover this concept:

“We must not confuse our God-given abilities with our God-given assignments.”


My alarm sounded at 6:30, and then 6:45, and then 7. I rolled out of bed, got dressed, and grabbed by Bible. As per usual lately, I read until a verse grabbed me. In my head, I check off the “time with God” box.

By 9am, I couldn’t recall what I’d read. Or the reference. Or the book of the Bible.

Kicking myself, I dwelt not on the sorts of things Philippians 4 suggests, but instead on my lack of studiousness and steadfastness. How was I going to honor God if I couldn’t remember anything about the time I spent in His Word?

That evening, still frustrated with myself, I came across a chapter titled “Switcheroo: Why Every Control Freaks Needs to Take God Off Her To-Do List.”

Author Jennifer Dukes Lee challenged: “Quiet time is ineffective if I leave Jesus at my living room chair and get so busy that I forget to partner with him the rest of the day.


As I turned an opportunity over and over in my head, I chastised myself for unlearning an important lesson from God about saying “no.” FOMO and fear of disappointing and the sense that I “had to” tugged at my heart.

I remembered that just a few days prior, in the midst of frustration making plans, I told my husband, “If I don’t do it, it won’t get done! No one else will.” He looked back with the gentle expression that reminds me to listen to what’s coming out of my mouth.

That’s wasn’t Christ in me talking. Neither were the thoughts I was weighing as I considered the opportunity that probably couldn’t fit on my plate without exceeding a healthy portion size.

Wanting to avoid instead of face a decision, I reached for this book.

The chapter I was about to begin was titled “Room: It’s Time to ‘Do, Delegate, or Dismiss.””

I then faced with a new decision: is highlighting the whole chapter or just taking in the convicting, freeing, helpful truth better?


Some books are specific answers to prayer.

That’s what It’s All Under Control has been for me from the get-go.

I heard the title in early summer and started praying for the author, a friend. Then I had the God-given opportunity to meet her and hug her. When the launch team announcement went live, I missed the sign up because I so did NOT have it all under control for a few days- and I had forgotten God did.

God reminded me of His sovereignty kindly and gently by placing me on the launch team anyway. Plus, He provided an extra book. And another extra book.

Are you also the sort that strives to have it all under control and consistently forgets that God already does? Maybe this book is one way God would like to answer your prayer for peace, too.

<I received an advanced copy of this book.

I’m super thankful for it and this review is really what I thought of it!>


Comment before 9/23/18 on this post (or on one of the social media posts about this) and you’ll be entered to WIN A FREE COPY of It’s All Under Control.


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13 Replies to “The Ongoing Struggle with Control (And How God Answered My Prayer)

  1. Bethany, so here’s what I’ve learned in the last couple of years: There’s nothing like being put in a situation where you have no control to help you realize how much you like being in control. 🙂 I’d like to think I don’t need this book, but I am 100 percent confident that when I read it, I will find that I actually need it very much. (Same thing happened with Love Idol, by the way.) Also, I had to smile at the dishwasher story, but not because I have a preferred way of loading the dishwasher, of course (cough, cough). Great review!

    1. Lois, my goodness from all you’ve shared I’m sure you’ve been learning that intensely! I thought I had “learned the lesson already” when I picked up Love Idol too….same thing….needed it. I’d wager It’s All Under Control will be that way too when you read it. It’s just that kind of book. : )

  2. I totally relate with your dishwasher story! This is all me! I’m about two chapters into this book right now, and it’s hitting me right where I’m at! Loved the review! Can’t wait to keep going!

  3. I’m enjoying reading everyone’s thoughts on this book and I love your story of how God used it to answer your prayer! (PS- no need to include me in the giveaway as I’ve read the book and the postage costs would be horrible!)

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