The Paradox of Losing Control

Trusting another person is most difficult for me. When others have suggested trusting God or leaving it in God's hands, I have come away from such advice feeling confused and frustrated. I have never known how to trust God.

The other day, though, I was in a tight situation, though not one that was harmful. It was a good opportunity for a lesson. All of my concentration was focused on the bad things that were about to happen at the moment and the mountain of bad things that would result. My stomach was churning. My palms were sweating. My eyes kept moving from one indicator of impending doom to another. My mind was racing through how to get out of the situation once it had turned bad. In the midst of the turmoil, stress, and panic, the image of St. Peter walking on the water took the place of all of the gloom that was filling my mind. The face of St. Peter keeping his gaze on Christ instead of on the storm and the waves became the answer to the bad things that were about to happen. I stopped looking at the indicators of impending doom, looked straight ahead of me at an image of Jesus I had in my mind, starting praying one Hail Mary after another, and relaxed. Without being able to explain how, I knew that everything would be fine, simply because I wasn't in control.

That paradox was the lesson.

Trying to control everything and the frustration and the pain associated with those countless vain attempts is the price of not trusting anyone. Simply by trusting Christ as St. Peter did on that stormy lake relieves me of all of the pain, confusion, and frustration and makes it easier for me to focus on my relationship with God. Within that relationship I find the peace and the strength to fulfill the very few, specific responsibilities I have to God, the Church, my sons, my family, and myself. God takes care of everything else and it is futile and foolish for me to ever even try.

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