Who’s In Control

Every Sunday I hang out in a small room at the back of my church. It is a room that houses all of our sound and video equipment. It gets pretty hectic turning mics on and off, adjusting the sound controls, changing displays during songs and sermons, and recording the audio of the service. 

It looks like I have control over everything that happens, doesn’t it?  But, I only have control over a bunch of buttons, knobs and switches. Nobody sees what I actually do, they only see the result of what I am doing. They are watching someone else. If I am not in tune with what people can see, I can cause the message to be distorted.

In reality, although I have complete control over what I am doing, I have no control over what is being done at the pulpit. It wouldn’t matter if I showed the wrong image on the screens. If it isn’t right, the service will be held up waiting for me to correct the problem. If I played the wrong audio for a song, the singer doesn’t just sing whatever I play. They wait for me to find the correct music. 

It may look like I’m in control, but I’m anything but in control! This is not the cockpit of an airplane. I am complimentary to the service – I don’t control it. I can make it go smoother, or I can be an irritant to those who came to be a part of the day. I have to react to what is happening in an effort to present the best face to the congregation. I could do whatever I wanted to do, but that wouldn’t last long before the church decided I didn’t need to do that job any longer.

Even tougher is when someone decides either intentionally or inadvertently change the order of events. I have to be on my toes, recognize it, and make the necessary adjustments. Most days, everything goes smoothly, but occasionally it is a challenge to keep up. The service is better when I follow along with the people in control.

My job on the soundboard is similar to my walk with God. I’m not in control – He is. If I want to present the best picture of who He is to the world, I have to follow His lead. Oh, I can do whatever I want to do, but it changes the presentation. God gives us perfect cues to keep the presentation on track to show who He is. We only have to follow those cues. I know my music director and my pastor pretty well. I can often anticipate what they will do in a service. It makes the task of following their lead easier for me. In the same way, the closer I am in my walk with God, the easier it is for me to follow His lead.

At one time or another we all have the illusion that we’re in the cockpit of an airplane controlling what it does. But, in reality, we’re all standing behind a mixing board controlling what God gave us. The question is: Are we going to continue to act as if we’re in control, ultimately making a mess of the presentation God has planned for our lives? Or, are we going to offer the best presentation possible by following His lead? The choice is mine and yours.

We’re always better off when we follow God’s lead. I hope you choose to follow his lead today!

Now go out and show the world your best presentation of Jesus!

Dean Thompson