• Jason Wade


29 Who has woe? Who has sorrow?

Who has strife? Who has complaints?

Who has needless bruises? Who has bloodshot eyes? 30 Those who linger over wine, who go to sample bowls of mixed wine. 31 Do not gaze at wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup,

when it goes down smoothly! 32 In the end it bites like a snake and poisons like a viper. 33 Your eyes will see strange sights, and your mind will imagine confusing things. 34 You will be like one sleeping on the high seas, lying on top of the rigging. 35 “They hit me,” you will say, “but I’m not hurt! They beat me, but I don’t feel it! When will I wake up so I can find another drink?”

Have you ever been out of control? I know that sounds like something that may be a loaded question, but there have been times in my life that I was totally out of control. One being the time recently when I had surgery for my kidney stones. I remember them wheeling me down the hall in the hospital and the lights passing by similarly to what you would see in a movie. All of a sudden I am in a room and they make me breathe in the oxygen and the next thing I know I am in a room trying to wake up. I had lost over an hour of my life and had no idea what happened. That is just one example in my life, but I know that I have had others. It is hard to be out of control and think that you are in control but that is the truth about the aspect of spiraling. You think you are capable of controlling your actions but in reality it is something we cannot control and need help to stand up again.

As we look in the mirror we understand some of the things that Solomon speaks of today. We see the woes, the hurt, the pain , the sorrow and the strife. We feel as through we cannot get out of this box that we placed ourselves in and we look for any and every way that we can escape. It is very difficult to come to the realization that being out of control is the only way that we feel in control. The reality of escaping the pain means that we are willing to try anything just so we don't have to experience the hurt anymore. I know that I have also done other crazy things to escape reality of who God has created me to be. I mean, I remember the time I thought that my life would be different if I could just get a tan. It was the first and

last time I "laid out in the sun". It was a miserable experience and helped me realize that I had to accept who God created me to be a ginger who will never tan and has to realize that I love the sun but the sun does not love me. Over my 20 plus year in student ministry I have seen people who have spiraled out of control and damaged themselves spiritually, emotionally and physically just to try to recreate themselves as someone they could never be. When the reality hits and they realize how out of control they are they begin to panic and search for something to help them disappear all together.

Solomon hits to the heart of the problem and helps us to see the reality of those who are lose control through the power of alcohol. I know that we can look at this in both ways, figuratively and literally, but I believe that we look at the power that being out of control can give us. I have seen people who truly become one of three people when they reach the point of no return. Some people become angry because inside they have been fighting this world and when they reach the point of being out of control their emotions turn their fear into anger. They want to return the hurt of all of the people that have ever hurt them and they will take it out on anyone and everyone. The next is the one who seems to be fearless. When they reach the point of being out of control, the one who use to be timid loses all anxieties and fears and will take on the world and just like the other will say and do things that pleases the crowd with no hindaranes of who they may hurt in the path. Finally you have the ones who just become silent and lost in the moment. In their attempt to escape reality, they find themselves diving deeper into a pit that they cannot get out of because they have no understanding of how to get out except to dive deeper. Solomon is warning us of indulging into this lifestyle of losing control. It will lead us to a point of no return and leads to more heartache than solutions.

We have to realize that there are things in this world that causes us to be out of control. We have to also realize that we must reach out to others who can walk with us in these times of uncertainty. We need to surround ourselves with people who can help us step out of the spiral and once again stand on a solid foundation built on God. Satan uses this doubt in our lives to create confusion and chaos. Anything that satan can do to derail our lives and make us feel uncertain will show up in every situation. But I also need you all to understand that we are not unstoppable alone. We have been created to be connected to people who help us in

those times of need. We must realize that we are not alone and wherever we may find ourselves to be weak, there are others who are strong for us and vice versa. We are not created to walk through this life alone and that is seen from the beginning of creation when God created Adam and then Eve from Adam. Eve was created so that Adam would never be alone and I believe that we are created the same way. We have this unstoppable force that lives with us and surrounds us with power to overcome any obstacle. I am not saying that it will be easy and I believe that Solomon was truly trying to help us realize the struggle that may occur by being out of control. So I encourage us all to pray and lean in together as we battle satan's attempt to overthrow God's perfect creation in us. It is time to take the out of control and give back control to the CREATOR of all things. We can do this... it just takes us making a decision to let go and let God.

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