Ministry Resources

The GO-GO Girl Gives Up Control

Author: Angela Craig


Selah has been a theme for many people’s lives throughout the last few years. Selah means to stop, pause, dwell, wait, and listen. There is a need to s-l-o-w d-o-w-n this fast pace circus of life. People are talking about it and many are acting on it. Some, are getting of the grid -leaving the amusement park of life completely. What about you? Where do you fall in the conversation about rest?

Since I was born, I could not hold still. My Grandmother called me the GO-GO Girl!

Stopping is not in my spirit.

This, PAUSE idea is a great concept, Intellectually, I get it. But I don’t necessarily want to STOP and try it.

For example, when my babies were little, people always said: Sleep when they sleep. Great advice. But I honestly wanted to know the woman who could sleep and keep her house clean and dinner on the table at the same time.

My husband told me once, “You think REST is a four letter word.” I told him, of course it is a four letter word:

R – E – S – T. See, four letters. “No.” he said. “You think REST means LAZY!”

The thinking that REST means LAZY is completely WRONG, but my husband was right. I did think REST meant LAZY. #guiltyascharged

How good are you at holding still? Let’s test your answer.

Get a timer ready for 1 minute. When you are ready, free of distractions, press start. Try to hold still, close your eyes. Breathe.


What are you feeling? Where does your mind wonder to? Are you temped to abandon the exercise or do you feel drawn into a place of peace?

We can talk about REST all day long, but how many of us are really doing it? When was the last time you took 1 minute to pause and bring yourself into alignment with the present moment? How often do you STOP to reflect on your how you are doing – physically, emotionally, and spiritually? When was the last time you stopped muscling through your to-do list long enough to ask God what He thought about it?

I have learned one thing about rest.

  • True rest requires surrender. Control and surrender are not compatible. Choose one. Choose wisely.
  • True rest requires surrender. Control and surrender are not compatible. Choose one. Choose wisely.
  • If you find it difficult to change your habits of being in constant motion, remember this: If you don’t change, your habits will change you through burnout, crisis of relationship or disease of your body. It is only a matter of time.

My wake-up call came in the form of a car accident and a traumatic brain injury. If I don’t rest, it causes all sorts of physical problems. If I try to push through, eventually my body will stop me and I will be held hostage from doing the very thing God has called me to do and the very things I love in life.

That being said, I still find it hard to slow down.

I am passionate about what I do. That fire drives my activity. Maybe you feel the same way. This is how God created us. In Genesis 2:15, we meet Adam in the garden who was put there to work the grounds and put them in order. Then a few verses later we meet Eve who becomes Adam’s companion and co-labor.

Work is part of our DNA.

Even Solomon wrote in the Holy Scriptures, “Work is a gift from God”.

Before sin entered the world, we were made to thrive in our work, not strive and toil into a life of burnout and disease.

You will be happy to know God has a solution for us.

In Isaiah 30:15-16 God tells us that our salvation and our strength depends on our surrender, our complete dependency on Him.

Isaiah 30:15-16 (Message)

“Your salvation requires you to turn back to me and stop your silly efforts to save yourselves. Your strength will come from settling down in complete dependence on me— The very thing you’ve been unwilling to do. You’ve said, ‘Nothing doing! We’ll rush off on horseback!’ You’ll rush off, all right! Just not far enough!

But it seems from these verses and in life we are too busy taking things into our own hands – rushing here and there. Some of us refuse to get off the horse. (Personally, I love horses! #GUILTYagain)

Psalm 91 reveals God’s promise to us when we choose to dwell and rest in the shelter of the Lord. He will provide everything we need. God promises to cover us and protect us. We can let go of fear and worry as He defends us and command His angels to attend to us. This is so much better than going it alone.

Psalm 91 (NIV)

1 Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. 2 I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”

3 Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. 4 He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. 5 You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, 6 nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday. 7 A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. 8 You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked.

9If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,” and you make the Most High your dwelling, 10 no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent. 11 For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; 12 they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. 13 You will tread on the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent.

14 “Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. 15 He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. 16 With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.”

5 steps to choosing surrender over control?

  • Make a daily choice to put God in the center of your life (John 15:4). Making God your center is different than putting Him first. If we put God first, we may be tempted to treat God like a to-do list item instead of a central part of our decision making and living. When we make God center, we are conscious of His presence and help in every moment of our life.
  • Recognize that dwelling in the house of the Lord doesn’t always mean non-action. We PAUSE to LISTEN. In Latin, the word, “obey” would not exist without the word “listen.” “The word we translate into English as obedience, literally means, a listening from below.”1
  • Create a habit of Selah. Selah means to stop, pause, dwell, wait, and listen. A life rhythm of Selah: stop, breathe, and listen for what God wants us to do next. Our first purpose in life is always, relationship with God, then with others.
  • Recognize, it is through surrender that God does His best work in and through our lives. This knowledge calls us to a place of trust and obedience.
  • God never asked us to muscle through life alone. He called us into relationship with Him so He could provide and respond to all our needs and desires. He is just that good!

1 McHugh, A. (2015). The Listening Life. Embracing Attentiveness in a World of Distractions. IVP Books. Downers Grove, IL.

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