I wrote previously about the fact that You Can’t Control People.
You can hear me read that post to you on YouTube at: https://youtu.be/lPq1zgDbxog
I pointed out that people will do what people will do, no matter how we feel about it, so we need to control ourselves and our reactions, not try to control all the people around us.
As a follow-on from that topic I want to address the issue of Control over people which many delve into. It’s wrong and it’s evil. God gave each of us a free will and it is not our place to dominate the will of others or take their free will from them.
The kicker is that if you do try to control people you are competing with God. God is Lord and ruler of people’s lives, not you.
“You shall have no other gods before me.” Exodus 20:3
If you try to take vengeance you are competing with God, since God claims the right to avenge.
“We know him who said, Vengeance is mine; I will repay. And again, The Lord will judge his people.” Hebrews 10:30
The only option God gives you is to respond to others with the same grace He gives to you. If you don’t give them grace then the result is that bitterness takes root and spoils your life and those around you too.
“Pursue peace with all men, as well as holiness, without which no one will see the Lord. Be careful that no one falls short of the grace of God, so that no root of bitterness will spring up to cause trouble and defile many.” Hebrews 12:14,15
If you have developed skills in controlling people, such as a way of manipulating people to do what you think is best, then stop it immediately. The human will is precious and is not to be stolen from people. Witchcraft and the devil violate people’s wills so if you’ve learned how to manipulate people you are on very dangerous ground.
I have spoken with people over the years who claimed to have power through satan. The main objective of these people is to have control over others. Satanism is about controlling people for personal ends. I have had to help people who have had their will invaded by people seeking to use demonic power to control them.
Famous Christian teacher, Derek Prince, describes Domination of others as a form of witchcraft. He points out, sadly, that many Christians use a form of witchcraft when they try to make people fit in with their plans. So beware of your own tendency to dominate people and of people who have a dominating personality.
When I was in my late teens, during a time of spiritual renewal in the whole of my family, my mother was challenged by God about her manipulation of me and my brother. She had coached us through the years to choose to go to university. It was her ambition for us. She wanted us to fulfil some need inside her by getting a degree and working in a nice clean office.
She repented of that and called me and my brother together to tell us she was releasing us to find God’s will for our lives, and not to be bound to the will she had imposed on us.
Up to that point I hadn’t realised she was controlling me, but as soon as she released me I felt a freedom I didn’t realise I was missing.
Both my brother and I dropped out of university on the spot and each pursued different directions. We gained our educations in due time, because we wanted to, not because we were being manipulated to do it by our mother.
Many a parent or older person in the family will put pressure on children to become something that is important to the older person, despite what the interests or wishes of the child might be.
If you are doing to others what my mother did to me then I challenge you to repent of that and to let each person around you make their own choices, since they will have to answer to God for what they do.
I am not saying that you can’t give advice, or mentor and coach in the right way to go. Parents set the standards in the home and discipline children when they don’t honour those appropriate and godly standards. Parents are expected to set boundaries and make rules for children, for the child’s good. That, however, is not a licence to violate the will of the child. Win your child’s respect and obedience, don’t attack their will.
Forcing people to yield to your wishes violates them, and it doesn’t mean they actually agree or like what you have led them to do. So let them go. Let them be the people God called them to be.
Many a Christian parent has forced their children to go to church and do the religious things imposed by the family, with the children quickly abandoning those practices as soon as they can. It may be that the parent didn’t win the heart of the child and inspire them to value what was valuable, but the parent may well have forced the issue, dominating the will of the child, and reaping an unwanted reaction in due time.
In all your relationships keep in mind this key truth, You Can’t Control People and if you are trying to, you need to Let People Go.