Posted by: Botolff | November 16, 2009

Control can be the Open Door Invitation to Evil.

“Evil is (for the most part) unfeeling. It lacks sorrow when someone suffers and joy when there is happiness. But an evil person is more than emotionally detached; he simply will not allow himself to enter the heart of his victim as a person. The victim is an object – an entity to be controlled or destroyed– and not a living, breathing being who feels hurt, fear, sorrow, and shame. In that regard, evil sees the other as nothing more than a service to itself.” – Bold Love

Not all people who have a bent toward control are evil people.  After all, we all have a bent towards control on some level or another.  I want to remind us of what Bold Love says in this statement…”We all behave in evil ways at times.”  From the first fruit till now, we have been a people striving to be in control of our own lives.  Often we come to the conclusion that, if there is a God, he/she definitely doesn’t have our best interest in mind, and we had better “pick up the slack” or we’re in trouble.  I found myself wrestling with this just today. 

I was explaining to someone the glorious details surrounding a new business venture I am stepping into.  At the end of my explanation I said…”I am just so grateful to God that so many timely pieces of this puzzle have come into place for this to happen.”  It dawned on me that I really think I trust God to lead the way in this new venture.  Then I almost immediately found myself questioning why it is that I don’t trust him with my current financial condition, broken relationships I have with some people, and my struggle with being single.  I get so angry at him some days.  I am still reminded of a time about seven years ago when I was in the middle of my living room and very literally shook my fist in the air and said, “Fine, if you don’t care, then neither do I.  From this point on I’ll do whatever I want!”  Since that day, in some areas of my life, it seems I have had more heartache than I had in the first 29 years of my life combined.  We weren’t meant to take God’s place, which is good, because we suck at it.  I know from my personal experience of trying.

In my experience, the more selfishly controlling we become, the more evil we will perpetuate, and the more we will embrace wicked ways as our primary means of function in our world.  Evil people do exist, and but for the grace of God go I.  And by the way, I don’t believe that means God is not gracious in the lives of evil people, or that I am extra special because I have been blessed with some kind of grace that evil people aren’t blessed with.  Instead, I believe it is the contemplated acknowledgement of the grace God has offered to each of us that can keep us from going down paths contrary to our conscience that we otherwise have the freedom to go.  A couple of the reason’s why I am confident I am not an evil man is first because I have a keen awareness of how evil my heart can actually be; and second, because ultimately I don’t enjoy that part of me.  Although it seems at times like I’ve abandoned my conscience and wickedness has won, I’m not o.k. with that; and find myself at the “foot of the cross” asking for deliverance.  Years ago a friend taught me to love and depend on Psalm 51.  I know it because it knows me.  But evil people don’t know that kind of contrition.  Quite the contrary…“Evil uses false contrition to lull its victim to sleep so that it can regroup and try a different tactic.”  Control with no authentic conscience is very much at the root of evil.

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