That One Thing
by Billy Beasley
We like the illusion of control in our lives, don't we? That is all control is…an illusion. I believe that control factor keeps many of us from turning the wheel of this life completely over to God. It is like we have a list. Okay God, this, this, and that can go, but I need this.
I have shared previously about driving down the road and saying, “Lord, You take the wheel. Whatever the path is that You lay out for me I will walk it even if I have to surrender my dreams.” But I still want to take over the wheel at times. Why, I do not know. My Father has proven to be a far more capable driver of my life than I am.
A very wise spiritual woman shared something with me one day that I have never forgotten. Carol spoke of someone who was giving nearly every part of their life to God but there was one thing that even though they knew it to be wrong they refused to surrender.
That last thing is the one thing many of us will grasp so tightly and we refuse to give it up. We either think it defines us or maybe we believe we know better than God what we need in our lives. I was the poster child for this behavior. It is pretty arrogant when you think of it, right? I mean to think that any of us know better than the almighty God.
I believe in the light of God without question and I am also very aware of the darkness of this world. Sometimes, it appears as if that is all that surrounds us. It is easy to lose hope. The scriptures are mocked and sadly many churches have succumbed to downgrading the Bible if it dares to offend. It is Church Lite at its finest. Leaders pat people on the back and tell the congregation what they want to hear. They forget the importance that Jesus placed on scriptures—downplaying it by saying that was for that time.
2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.
One of my favorite scriptures, even when I was far from God is Hebrews 13:8. There was comfort that I could count on Him to remain the same.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
I once wrote a blog about how God is the potter and I am the clay. But isn't it human nature to try to spin that the other way? I sure did. I suspect most if not all of us have at one point or another.
That one last thing we cling to so fiercely. I think I know why. Because the evil one knows that once we let go of that he has lost the battle. It is over. So, he will bring everything at his disposal to try to prevent that.
I hung on to my desire to have the right woman first and to have my dream of being a published author. “Let me have those, God. Then I will surrender.” The truth is I would still have hung on to what I wanted even if I found those dreams. There will always be one more thing to cling to.
I have heard people say that once they have that one thing they lack that then they will turn it over to God, or that they were trying to turn it over. It is not something you have to try to do. There is also nothing or no one in this world worth keeping the fullness of relationship with God from you.
I learned that when I turned the wheel over as I drove down the road. I tell people often that my vision of that day is that God, turned to the host around Him, and said, “I have his attention. Let’s go to work.”
And did He ever go to work. He knew that I meant what I said.
I did not rush up an aisle or visit a priest. I did not go through a series of steps. I simply released. That is all it takes. Surrender all your heart. My day of turning the wheel over occurred in January of 2012. By September of 2013 I was enjoying my fifth month of marriage with my wife, Julie, who surpassed all my hopes I ever had about a woman. That same month I received an email from a traditional publisher offering me a contract for The River Hideaway. A story about two young men, one black, one white, and the friendship that they strike up during the racially charged times of 1967. I wrote most of the story in 1998 and had given up getting published after countless rejections.
On Sunday mornings, as I walk the auditorium at Lifepoint Church, one of my regular prayers is for that person who is trying to live life with one foot in the kingdom and one foot in the world. That today might be the day they step with both feet into the kingdom of God.
Everyone loves Jeremiah 29:11. For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
But read a little bit further.
“Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.”
All, or both feet in the kingdom.
Try it…What do you have to lose?
About the Author
Billy Beasley resides in Carolina Beach, NC with his wife Julie and their Australian Cattle Dog, Teke. They are active members of Lifepoint Church in Wilmington, NC.
Billy is the author of The River Hideaway - a traditionally published work of faith based fiction and the newly published novel, The Preacher's Letter. He shares two simple beliefs with his favorite character in this novel. Faith in God and a conviction that ‘Hearts have no color’.
You can read his “Sunday Inspiration” column on the 2nd Sunday each month here at Mustard Seed Sentinel.