HOW TO BE CONTROLLED (Examples from the Lives of Jesus and Moses) Happy & Under Control Part 2
There are only two men in the Bible called humble: Jesus and Moses. Neither of them were pushovers.
Matthew 11:29 (Jesus) “Take my yoke and put it on you, and learn from me, because I am Humble and humble in spirit; and you will find rest.”
Numbers 12:3 “Moses was a humble man,”
- Control is being understanding not demanding when someone serves me
How do you treat people who serve you? Waitresses, secretaries, clerks, tellers at the bank, fast food operators. Are you understanding or demanding?
Americans have a reputation overseas of being very, very pushy, very rude, very demanding, and not understanding. The secret of great service is to treat people with respect.
Luke 7:37-50 “When a woman who had lived a sinful life in that town learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, she brought an alabaster jar of perfume, and as she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them… Then Jesus said to her, ‘Your sins are forgiven. Your faith has saved you; go in peace.’”
- Control is being gentle not judgmental when somebody disappoints me .
Happiness comes when you can accept people who have not attained your level of perfection. They don’t have to reach up to your standards to be loved.
How do you react when somebody messes up his life? Do you excited about it: “I told you so! I could see it coming! Only a fool would have done that. I wouldn’t have been that dumb.” Do you have a secret sense of satisfaction when other people blow it? Humility is when people disappoint you, you are Humble, not judgmental.
The one thing that angered Jesus most, more than anything else in life, was self righteous religious people who were always judging others.
Moses is a good example of what to do. Numbers 12: 1-13 “Miriam began to talk against Moses because of his Cushite wife, for he had married a Cushite. The anger of the LORD
burned… when the cloud lifted from above the Tent, there stood Miriam–leprous, like snow. So Moses cried out to the LORD, “O God, please heal her!”
*Number 12 he was being criticized and insulted and put down. The issue was that he married a black lady, Zipporah was from Ethiopia. It was an interracial marriage and Moses’ brother and sister didn’t like it. They were griping. Moses refused to defend himself. He said, “God, I’m going to let You take care of this.” God always has better ways of getting even that we do. God said to Miriam, “You like white skin? How about a lot of it?” and He gave her leprosy. Moses did not say a word. He would not retaliate.
- Control is being tender without surrender when someone disagrees with me.
The fact is, you can’t please everybody in life. Just about the time you get Crowd A satisfied, Crowd B gets upset. One minute you’re the hero, the next minute you’re the zero. You need to learn to be tender without surrender. The test of maturity is how do you handle disagreeable people, people who irritate you, people who like to contradict you, people who like to get in arguments, like to quarrel with you. You have three alternatives:
You can retreat in fear,
You can attack in anger, or
You can respond in love.
Humility is not compromising your convictions. You can be tender without surrender. It’s not being passive, being a doormat, giving in, always letting the other person have their own way. That’s not Humility, it’s weakness.
It’s also not reacting in anger, if someone disagrees with you, you blow them away. Some people use verbal overkill, they explode people. Everything is a win/lose situation.
Gen. George S. Patton, said, “ You never fight a battle where winning doesn’t make any difference.” Don’t get into an argument over something that doesn’t matter anyway.”
An argumentative spirit indicates an ego problem. If you like to quarrel, if you like to get into arguments, you’ve got an ego problem. Jesus says, that a person who is Humble is happy because he is tender without surrender. Humility is learning to disagree agreeably. Humility is being able to walk hand in hand without seeing eye to eye. In a marriage, when two people agree on everything, one of them isn’t necessary. You eat with a knife and a fork, not two knives. We need variety.
John 13:6-8 He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?” Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” “No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.”
When people disagree with you, you can be passive, a doormat — “Go ahead, have your way.” — or you can fight them tooth and nail, blow up, get angry, fight back, be sarcastic. Or you can respond in love — a Humble answer.
We need to learn to be understanding, not demanding with people who serve us. And we need to be learn to be Humble, not judgement with people who let us down. We let people down. Happy are those who treat others the way God treats them. And we need to be tender without surrender when somebody disagrees with us.
- Control is being teachable, not unreachable when someone corrects me.
Humility is a teachable spirit. Humble people are eager to learn. Humble people don’t pretend they know it all. They know they don’t know it all and they don’t try to pretend they know it all.
Exodus 18:17-25“ Moses’ father-in-law replied, “What you are doing is not good. You and these
people who come to you will only wear yourselves out. The work is too heavy for you; you cannot
handle it alone. Listen now to me and I will give you some advice, and may God be with you.
…Moses listened to his father-in-law and did everything he said.
When your mate makes a constructive suggestion to you, how do you relate to it? Do you get uptight, defensive? Don’t consider the source, consider the suggestion. Humble people don’t have all the answers. Be very wary of people who have all the answers. Those are people you need to be afraid of. They’re dangerous.
Are you open or closed to new ideas? Are you open to change or closed to change? “We’ve always done it that way!” A Humble person — when someone corrects you, you’re teachable, not unreachable.
The wisest people that I know are the people who are the most eager, the most willing to learn. They have a teachable attitude. They don’t think they know it all. Will Rogers used to say, “I never met a man I didn’t like.” I honest believe I never met a man I couldn’t learn from. Everyone of you could teach me. We could teach each other. We’ve all had different experiences. Everyone is ignorant, just on different subjects. We need each other. We can learn from anybody if you just know the right questions.
Have you learned to learn from your kids? You can learn from your kids. Do you realize you can learn from your in laws? My in laws have taught me a lot. Do you realize you can learn from your enemies? Your biggest critics often help you out the most. Unintentionally. They may mean to hurt you but God can use that criticism to teach you and make you more sensitive in a certain area even though they have a wrong motive for it. Humility, we’re teachable not unreachable.
A quote I like: “I’d rather change my mind and succeed than have my own way and fail.” A Humble person is not a weak person, wimp. A Humble person is understanding, not demanding; Humble, not judgmental; teachable, not unreachable.
- Control is choosing to act not react when somebody hurts you.
Take the initiative. A fact of life is you will be hurt. You will have hurts in life. Life hurts. You will be hurt by other people — intentionally many times. The Humility issue is how do you respond to it? What is your normal reaction when people hurt you intentionally? Retaliate! Get even! We’re usually at our most creative best thinking up methods to get even. We are so good at thinking up creative strategies for revenge.
To retaliate is to react. They both start with “re” which is a response. All a reaction. Reaction. But to respond with forgiveness, even when they haven’t asked for it, is to act, to take the initiative.
John Powell, in his book, Why Am I Afraid To Tell You Who I Am?, said he was walking down the street with a friend and they stopped to get a paper. The man selling the paper was grumpy and discourteous, very rude. The friend, as he was walking away, said to the man, “You have a nice day, now!” John Powell asked his friend, “Is that man always that rude to you?” “Yes”. “Are you always that nice to him?” Friend said, “Yes, I’m not going to let one man ruin my day.”
Booker T. Washington, the great black scientist, faced prejudice all his life said, “I will never allow another man to control or ruin my life by making me hate him.”
The moment that you start retaliating, that you start seeking revenge, that you start trying to get even, you give up control of your life. You are no longer in control. You are reacting, not acting. That’s a position of weakness. Jesus said the Humble person knows how to let it go.
Luke 23:33-34“When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him, along with the criminals-one on his right, the other on his left. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
God says be an actor not a reactor in how we respond to life.
Humility is the ability to handle a hurt without retaliating.
What determines your emotions? Can you control your own emotions or does somebody else? Your emotions are either controlled by circumstances or by character. It’s your choice.
“That makes me so mad… so sad… feel so bad…” Circumstances are controlling how you feel. I choose to feel happy. I choose to not be depressed. Happiness is a choice. You’re emotions are either controlled by circumstances or by choices. Humble people are self controlled, controlling their reactions toward life.
Jesus promised, “Happy are the people who can control their reactions, for they will inherit the earth.” What does “inherit the earth” mean? You’ll be in control of your situation. The world is yours. The person who has self control of his emotions the world is his. He controls the situation because he’s not controlled by it. If you are a Humble person, you are no longer a victim. You control your choices.
Victor Frankl, the famous psychiatrist, went through Auchwitz. He said, “They took my clothes, my wife, my kids, my wedding ring. I stood naked before the SS and I realized they can take everything in my life but they cannot take my freedom to choose how I will respond to them.” That is a freedom you will always have. How do I react? How do I choose to react to those people who hurt me?
Jesus is saying that happiness belongs to people with self control. You say, “That leaves me out! I can’t control my reactions! I can’t get them under control!” Right. But I know somebody who can help you get them under control.
NEED MORE SELF CONTROL?
2 Tim. 1:7
For the Spirit that God has given us does not make us timid; instead, his Spirit fills us with power, love, and self-control.
The results are three fold: power, love, self control. The secret of controlling your reaction is letting God’s Spirit fill your life moment by moment. He’ll break all those bad habits, all those patterns of reacting, all those old ways of being negative, defensive, reacting in fear, in anger, in sarcasm. He can break all those old patterns in your life and fill your life with power, love self control.
- Greater power, love and self control come from giving GOD control
That is Humility. Power controlled by love. Even though you could blow them away you don’t. Jesus is the prime example of this. We’re talking about the lifestyle of Jesus Christ. He’s hanging on the cross and He could have called ten thousand angels. He could have blown up the world. Power controlled by love. This is the happy, relaxed, stress reduced type of life style. You roll with the punches. Things don’t fluster you because you’re in control of your reactions even though you can’t control the situation.
Some of you are stressed out. You’re stressed out by relationships. What do you need more than anything else? You need to develop the quality of Humility, the quality of controlling my reactions by the Spirit of God. When He comes into my life He gives me power controlled by love.
Prayer: “Jesus Christ, I need Your Spirit of power in my life. And I need Your Spirit of love and I need Your Spirit of self-control. This next week when people serve me, help me to be understanding. And Jesus Christ, when people disappoint me, help me to be gentle, not judgmental. And when people disagree with me, help me to be tender without surrender. When people want to correct me and offer suggestions, help me to be teachable and not unreachable. And, Lord, when people hurt me, help me to be an actor and not a reactor, to choose to respond with love and forgiveness and not react in retaliation. But to leave that to You. I want to be like You, Jesus Christ. I need Your help and power in my life.” We pray it in His name, Amen.