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Jesus take the wheel?? Makes a good song, right? But to give it to God and trust Him in difficult times is often easier said than done! How do you let go and let God be in control when you are going through trying times in life and every fiber of your being wants to hold onto the wheel? How do you give it to God and let Him navigate the roads of life?
Give it to God -Trusting God in Difficult Times
A couple of years ago, my husband and I went through a really tough time. We were living somewhere that wasn’t working out for us. We could just feel the need to move on.
It was a bad move to begin with, but was necessary for him to complete his doctorate.
It just seemed like nothing was working out for us there. Even my daughter, who was in her first year of high school, wasn’t happy and didn’t feel she fit in.
It was time to move on, but that would prove to be easier said than done.
He started applying for jobs all throughout the country. In his career, you don’t just look at one location. You basically have to be willing to go where the opportunity presents itself. Since he had gotten every job he ever interviewed for we thought this would be easy!
We were wrong.
Give it to God When You’re in the Wilderness
He had TONS of interviews! In fact, he had so many interviews I literally had to start a spreadsheet. I am not even joking.
I had to track all these phone interviews, and face-to-face interviews, where they were and the results of them. He was traveling all over the country on what seemed like a weekly basis and was usually one of two finalists for the position.
And yet one door after another slammed shut. He didn’t get the job.
We were at a loss. We didn’t understand what was going on! All of a sudden this man who always got the job wasn’t getting any!
Usually, it was because they would end up hiring an internal candidate or not hiring anyone at all! ‘Weird’ was the only way I could describe it. I am not just talking about one or two jobs. I am talking more like twenty!
It was honestly the most baffling time of our lives! It made no sense! One or two jobs, yeah I can see that. But tens of jobs? Something was going on!!
We were in our own personal wilderness with God leading the way, except we were too busy looking at where we THOUGHT we should be heading instead of looking for where God was leading us!
Give it to God – Entering My War Room
Then a job opened up in Connecticut where we had lived previously. My husband is from Connecticut originally and I had lived there for over fifteen years so it was really home for us. We had family there. We had really been wanting to move back home and here was this job that opened up! So of course, he applied.
He got the interview and flew to Connecticut and then, that same week, flew to another state for another interview.
While he was at the airport returning home from the interview in the other state, he called me. He said three words that still give me goosebumps.
We’re going home!
He got the job back home in Connecticut and we would be returning home in about six weeks. I immediately broke into tears.
As I went about the rest of my day, beginning to make arrangements to move, something hit me.
Two months before all this happened, before we even started looking for jobs, my husband and my daughter had made me a War Room in our house. I would go in each day and spend time in prayer, blog there, etc.
On the wall was a sheet of paper where I wrote out what I was praying for!
I had at that time started praying that God would make a way for us to go back home. I prayed for it every day!
Because we were unhappy with where we were and what was going on there, because we were worried about finding another job, because we were focused on the NOW and that job in Connecticut wouldn’t even be on the radar for another six months, I had forgotten that I had even prayed for it!
I was willing to let go and let God answer that prayer when I added it to my prayer list, BEFORE the difficulties arose. But it was easy to forget that request and to forget I was giving it to God and letting Him be in control when I was in the middle of all these trials.
I was focused on the situation that we were in and the jobs that were available at THAT moment and couldn’t see that God was working to answer my prayers just because the answer wasn’t visible yet.
I had this plan for how God should have worked things. I always believed I was giving it to God but the reality was I was directing Him. We often do that, don’t we?
Give it to God – Jesus Take the Wheel
We often hear this saying (and the song!), but do we truly live it?
It is often as though we are on this road trip with God behind the wheel. We are traveling this road that we THINK we know. And we see a turn to the left and we shout “God! Take this road! I know this road…it is perfect!! It is a shortcut!! It’s a great way to go!!”
But God keeps going!
Then another turn to the right! “God! Take THIS road!!! This road is easy! This road has some great scenery! It’s so nice! I know you’d love for me to see this road!!”
But God keeps going!
“God, turn HERE! This is the last road!! If we don’t turn here we are going to end up somewhere I don’t know!! We may end up somewhere horrible!!!”
But He keeps going!
Then we arrive where God was leading and it is the most beautiful destination! It is better than anything we could have imagined!! And if God had granted our wishes and turned down any of those detours, we wouldn’t be in the wonderful place we are now.
I prayed for so many states, so many jobs, so many opportunities!! We looked into each area he was interviewing in and thought how awesome it would be to live there. And each time God drove on past it.
It wasn’t that any of these other places were bad; they were all good! They just weren’t best!
God was answering my prayers, the prayers I had even forgotten about by that time because of all the stress and because each location looked better than where we were!! I thought I was able to easily give it to God but truth was, I wasn’t trusting God enough to see Him moving.
I was saying “Jesus take the wheel, as long as you go where I tell you!” We want Him to take the wheel but WE want to navigate! We say ‘let go and let God’ as long as He is doing it the way we picture!
Trusting God is in Control
No matter what you THINK may look good, God has better. What we THINK we want may only scratch the surface of the wonderful things God has in store!!
God has brought us home and placed us in a part of the state that we are absolutely in LOVE with.
At the time we couldn’t understand how he had been a finalist for almost every single job he went for and didn’t get a single offer. And I realize now, if God had allowed him to get ANY job offer prior to this one, he would have taken it because we were SO miserable where we were. Then we wouldn’t be where we are now.
Trusting God in difficult times really shouldn’t be something to fear!! He’s got you!! God is in control! So toss out the map YOU brought on the trip and don’t just let Jesus take the wheel, let Him do the navigating as well!
He knows the roads far better than you!! Just let go and let God handle it!
What are some ways you have struggled to give it to God in various situations? How did you overcome the temptation to handle it all yourself?
The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. - NIV
1 Peter 5:7
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. - NIV
Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established. - ESV
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. - ESV
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