I heard this weekend that 40% of our personalities are due to “our raising.” I don’t know who came up with those figures but I do believe that events in our childhood change us.
For instance, I know that having my Mommy go to heaven when I was 10 changed who I was forever. How can it not? I believe that my fear of sudden bad change relates directly to the fact that my mother got up to go fix supper, and in the doorway between the dining room and kitchen, went to heaven instead. Trauma. It changes us.
However, I see in my nieces and nephews the same dislike for conflict and bad change. I see it when we watch movies or when they hear a story. I don’t believe it’s more than the norm, but there must be some of that in the 60% of their genetic makeup. I hope they get through childhood without anything happening to accentuate that tendency.
Or do I?
I know I struggle as a Christian with trusting God. I am managerial (aka bossy) and like to be in control. What if the worst-case scenario happens? I think maybe, just maybe I can help God. If I admit it what I am really saying in my heart of hearts is—I think I can do a better job than God! Well.
This summer God put a situation in my life I never thought to fear. It was so far beyond the realm of what I ever dreamed up that it hit me like a train out of nowhere. I can’t fix it. Only God can.
I am helpless in myself with no answers other than those that come from God. But guess what? God has been pouring HIS help from heaven like He’s taken the fire hydrant, aimed the nozzle at my family and opened it up full-blast. He has shown me that HE has the power, HE has the knowledge. HE’S GOT IT!
So, this weekend I went to the Christian Communicators Conference where I expected to learn how to be more professional in my speaking opportunities. Little did I know.
Oh, that was part of it. I learned A LOT. But what God really did was in my heart. He showed me, through listening to amazing stories of the power of God on the lives of these 31 women that He Has IT! I learned that if I keep my focus on Him I can overcome any barrier Satan would like to put in my path.
And then I thought He was done.
On the last morning we took a photo. As I sat on a staircase surrounded by new friends, God spoke to me. He reminded me of all the things He’s done the past few months. What about the verses He gave me at just the right moment? What about the breakthrough of the night before? He reminded me that He has IT.
As I stood up this new thought flew through my brain. I have no reason to be afraid. None.
It was a simple moment. No tears. No drama. Just the still small voice of God turning the key of change in my heart.
This morning I prayed. Lord, this day is yours. Do with it what you want.
Oh, I’ve prayed that before but it’s always followed by moments of terror over what HE will do to me since I’ve been foolish enough to ask HIM to control my day. Today, it was followed by peace.
And that’s when I knew God had changed that 40% of my personality. Oh, I’m sure the 60% hereditary inclination to managerialness will still attempt to take control. But I have something now I didn’t. I have confidence in the safety of trusting the God who “has it”!
So for my nieces and nephews—I won’t pray that their lives will be pain free. Instead I’ll pray their hearts will be tender to face each trial knowing that God HAS IT—and them firmly in His Grip!
And the peace of God which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7
Miriam Jones Bradley is an Inspirational Author and Speaker. She has lived “from sea to shining sea”, but spent most of her life in the Great Plains. She has worked as a nurse for the past 29 years. She enjoys speaking about the writing process and recording memories. In addition to the Double Cousins Mystery Series, she is the author of All I Have Needed—A Legacy for Life. She and her husband, Dr. Bruce Bradley, make their home in North Carolina.