Sunday, April 08, 2007

Should we take control of our lives?

Yesterday, over breakfast, I was reading the back a cereal box promoting a fitness book which, if I buy it, will allow me "to take control of my life." This is a common refrain of the self-help literature, and it raises an interesting question. As Christians, should we seek to control our lives or to give control away?

As a spiritual exercise, I'm going through the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. I love the this program because it presents spiritual truths using different language that I hear in Christianity, so they get me thinking in new ways. I would recommend it to anyone.

I'm currently on step #3: "Make a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understand Him." In short, we are to give up control of our lives and give it to someone else. Sort of like a small-business person selling the business to a larger concern and running the same business, but now as an employee rather than a boss.

Why in the world would anyone willingly give control of our lives to someone else? Autonomy is so highly valued in our society (and it is epitomized by tenured professors) that this is a psychologically-revolutionary concept for Americans.

(P.S., I think that I'm going to be on this step for awhile.)


AThousandThousand said...

Hello. I was just passing through and I like your posts. is there a way where I can subscribe to your blogs? not sure what a 'feeder' is...but I don't think that's the link that I need? I'm so lost. I'm new to Blogger. Oy! Anywhoo. Thanks! Happy Easter! :D

Brad Wright said...

Frankly, I'm not sure how subscription works. I think a lot of people use google reader ( to subscribe to various blogs (and then read them all in one place, like a newspaper).

Any advice from other readers about this?

Thanks for posting.

sarah said...

I use netvibes.

Greg Prosch said...

Regarding your post on control: A teacher that I know and am still a student of in a fashion constantly says, "All meaning is context dependant". I would respond that it depends on the context ;-)

As for subscriptions... You can add a FeedBurner ( widget to your site and people can get an email sent to them when you add a new post. It works like a charm for me. Also, a lot of people don't have RSS aggregators yet or, like me, don't like to use them regularly.