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  • Melinda K. Bowens

So, what if I...stayed in my lane?

Let me be clear from the beginning with this post. I don’t mean staying in my lane as far as comparing to other people (which is a different topic for a different day), I mean staying in my lane when it comes to me trying to do things only God can do.

That was certainly different; I just jumped directly to the point this time. I know I typically begin almost everything I say and write with a story because I think stories are cool. A story is the only thing I have to paint a picture with words. Since I’m not exactly Picasso, words are my tools. And Jesus told stories (He called them parables) and no one was tripping, so I might as well keep the party going! But sometimes getting right to business is the best decision.


With that being said, something that God really brought to my attention lately is how I fight Him for the reign in my life. I openly share about my struggles with control. So at this point, me saying I’m controlling is like saying water is wet and fire is hot. No surprises there. However, this was a little different. This notion of fighting God was sneakier and far more subtle. I wish it were the blatant type of fighting where God says one thing and I just yell back, “I got this!” At least then, I would hear myself being a crazy person in the moment. This time God highlighted how I camouflage (or try to camouflage) seeking Him as a means of getting my way.

Eeeeeeekkkk! I could just hide my face in shame (but not really)! Well, I’m not exactly ashamed, but I am taken aback. Because how could I be mess up something like praying?! Like, is that even a thing?! And the answer is yes.

Now, before you start speeding reading through the Bible to figure out if I made that up, just keep reading for a moment.


The example God keeps bringing to my mind is how some of my lengthiest prayers weren’t prayers at all. They were more so really long petitions for Him to do what I wanted Him to do. On top of that, I then had the nerve to ask Him for specific steps to make my plan happen. My plan, not His, mine.

I think God put me in timeout, but I’m not 100% sure about that part. If He did, I deserved it.

But quietly, I am not the only one that deserves to be in timeout. Some of y’all need to be here with me too (we can make it a club). More often than I think we realize, we spend a good deal of time in “prayer” wanting the answers to specific questions and requesting steps to a plan that God never handed us. He may have given us the desire, but we took the idea and ran away with it. Now God is looking at us like, “Ummmmm that was only the beginning, do you want the rest or nah?!”


For me, I have wrestled with (among many other things) the direction I want my blog, books and speaking to take. Do I always want to remain lighthearted? Do I want to be more hard-hitting? Do I only want to be faith-based? What about my love for mental and emotional health/healing? Where does everything fit?

These are all probably great questions (in theory). However, they each missed the point and God so softly (not really) called that to my attention. The blog, books, and speaking were never my idea to start, so they were also not my ideas to maintain. *clutches pearls and edges* I clearly was not ready for that answer, but I needed it. Moreover, a few of us needed that answer because it gave us some release in life.

God made each of us stewards of the gifts and talents He provides. Stewards, not God by proxy, but stewards. Meaning, it is our job to take the directions given to us and implement them with swift obedience. It is not our job to plagiarize God’s idea then start doing our own thing. We each have a different role in life, but none of those roles includes casting credit as God Jr.


Question of the Day:

What would happen if you stayed in your lane?

Encouraging Verses:

For My thoughts are not your thoughts, and your ways are not My ways." This is the LORD's declaration." For as heaven is higher than earth, so My ways are higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.

Isaiah 55:8-9 HCSB

Jesus answered, "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.'

Matthew 22:37 GNT

But those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.

Matthew 23:12, NLT

A person's pride will humble him, but a humble spirit will gain honor.

Proverbs 29:23, CSB


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