Cultivating Community: Not in Charge


Happy Monday, readers! Today, I’m excited to bring you words from fellow blogger and COMPEL sister, Kelsey Townsend-Remmelts. I have so enjoyed getting to know Kelsey through her writing and her story of grief, faith, hope, and love. She is a living example of how God can work redemption and bring incredible blessings, even  through our most painful and heartbreaking trials.

Today, Kelsey shares with us some thoughts on how we are not the ones “running the show,” no matter how much we think we are–plus, words of encouragement for how we can learn to embrace God’s sovereignty and will in our lives. I pray her words bless you today!

Not in Charge

By Kelsey Townsend-Remmelts

People  have always listened to me.

I am not being cocky or arrogant–it’s just that, ever since I was a little girl, I made decisions, gave instructions, and people tended to follow. I remember my mom describing me as the bossy one in the neighborhood. I was the youngest and smallest on our street, yet I would be the one to pick the games to play, assign who was on what team, and the kids listened and followed. It is a running joke in my family when I am described as bossy; I correct them and say, “No, I have leadership skills”.

All my life, I have been a take charge, make decisions, kind of gal. I saw it in my high school years when I was one of the captains of our drill team. I had a company of girls who I led in class and on the field.

I started in the corporate world at the ripe old age of nineteen and worked my way up the ranks to a manager position. I worked for and completed my degree while working full time for the same company.

I made decisions for my family (many times my husband was indecisive) and was looked at as the one in charge. As the saying goes, if Mama’s not happy, nobody is happy! Life went on like this…until my husband died.

All of the sudden, I could not decide on anything. Nothing mattered, and my confidence had been blown. When it came to family matters, I may have been the one to make the decisions, but I had a partner with whom I discussed and bounced the ideas around. Now it was solely on my shoulders, and I crumbled.

But God was there.

As I made my way through the messiness of grief, God was there to remind me that I am not in charge. When I fully surrendered to His will, a huge burden was lifted, and now I see the beauty and grace in His resolution. Here are three key lessons God taught me during that time:


The night my husband died, I fully surrendered to God’s will. Yes, He gives us free will so we can make choices and decisions for our lives. BUT there are consequences to choices, and now I pray on decisions and consult my Father. When people ask me my opinions for decisions, I encourage them to pray on it as well. Sometimes decisions need time to rest and marinate before resulting in a final step. I ask for God’s wisdom and discernment in any major, life-changing, and permanent outcome which would affect my family and me.


This is a huge, daily challenge for me. God’s will is perfect in His timing. I have to surrender to His timetable and wait for guidance. God teaches me restraining to move on my will is part of the process in achieving His will. Patience is a virtue which I strive to practice daily.


In order to surrender and have patience, I need to completely trust God. It is not easy to fully surrender and have faith in whatever the outcome, especially if it is a devastating event or a painful lesson. Developing and deepening a personal relationship with God takes effort and time. As my faith grows, my need for control becomes less.

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand (Isaiah 41:10).

Throughout this process, understanding and accepting I am not in control has been one of my biggest life lessons. Perhaps you and I share the same “being in charge” type of mentality. If so, I challenge you to surrender to who is in charge of it all and experience the freedom of following God’s lead. I have peace and comfort in understanding my role in His majestic plan.

Oh, and for the record: it’s okay for me every now and then to make the decision of where the family will be going out for dinner because Mama doesn’t want to cook. And believe me, it is not about being bossy but showing the leadership skills! Blessings!

Kelsey’s Bio

My perfect little world disintegrated fifteen and half years ago when my husband died suddenly, leaving me and three little ones behind.  BREATHE!!!  My journey involves grief, faith, hope, love, and continues to grow and mature.  I am awestruck at how God uses my pain to define, develop, and deepen my character.   What trials are you experiencing?  How can you move forward and discover your purpose?

God has been my strength, support, leader, listener, and matchmaker to bring another man in my life (my current husband of 10 years!).  I have asked God to show me how to serve him and his Kingdom.  In my 50th year on earth, it has been revealed to me to write about my experiences in grief, faith, hope, and love. I am amazed to see this unfold and excited to learn and fulfill my purpose. I am blessed to have a wonderful husband, three beautiful children, and 2 granddaughters who make me smile daily.  I volunteer for an awesome non-profit called Ragan’s Hope who supports families with critically ill or injured children.  In my spare time I love to read, write, and be a little crafty!


Facebook: Amen Sista-Kelsey Remmelts

Twitter: @KRemmelts


Be Still

by Meredith H. Carr

Download my latest book, Be Still, about how to practice the art of stillness in the midst of turmoil.

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  • blog8628 says:

    I think I really thought I was in control until I had kids… When I was in the Army, grown men with guns did as I said, but I can’t get my small children to fall in line… Thanking God that He is in charge, and I am not! xo

    • Boy, isn’t that the truth! My children are little, so we’re just at the start of disciplining and teaching, but already I’m shocked at how much harder it is than I expected–how such cute, tiny people can bring you to your knees! And bring you, arms open, before God’s throne of mercy and grace! Blessings :-).

  • bloggerlovestheking says:

    Kelsey what a beautiful post and I just had a few tears reading this. No I am not bossy, but I need work my way up that ladder from a clerk-steno to a contracting officer and went back to college for my degree in my 40s.

  • Susan B Mead says:

    I can’t begin to imagine losing my husband – yet I’ve lost a son when he was 20. Forever 20, yet love lives, hope prevails and God is so merciful and good to us, His children, isn’t He, Kelsey?

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