You mention the word submission in our culture and very negative thoughts come to mind. But voluntary submission is one of the cornerstones of the Christian faith. God desires His children to voluntarily submit to Him, church leadership, each other and civil authority.
Perhaps our problem with submission is the idea that submission means inferiority when, in fact, it means an order of authority. And, we have no better model for this submission than Jesus’ submission to the Father and the Holy Spirit’s submission to the Father and the Son.
We Christians believe in one God that is expressed in three persons, each equally God, eternally God, fully God but not 3 Gods, but 3 persons of the 1 eternal Godhead. Each Person of the Godhead equal in essence to the other divine Persons. Each Person possesses fully and simultaneously the identically same, divine nature. Yet each is an eternally and distinctly personal expression of that one and undivided nature. What distinguishes them is their roles. Jesus only did what the Father was doing and always did what the Father wanted Him to do. Jesus seeks to glorify the Father in all that He does. And, the Holy Spirit was sent to glorify the Son to the ultimate praise of the Father (Bruce Ware, Journal of Discipleship and Family Ministry, Volume 1, Issue 2).
That’s a mind full and a beautiful picture of our God and the perfect example of how we are to interact with those in authority over us as well as each other.
You maybe thinking I could submit to a perfect person to but there just aren’t any. True, but no matter what the situation/circumstance is we are ultimately submitting to God and not just the person over us. We submit to our church and governmental authorities because they were placed in their positions of authority by God Himself (Romans 13: 1). When we submit to the wise counsel of friends and spouse we do so because they are made in God’s image and have been blessed with certain gifts, position and wisdom by God Himself. So, we are actually submitting to God whenever we submit.
But for me personally the hardest person for me to submit to is God Himself. I’m constantly chafing at the challenging circumstances of life forgetting or just not wanting to accept God’s providential hand in everything placed in my path. I know what’s best for me God so let me run things in my life and I’ll let you know when I need you. The AA 12 Step program calls that stinking thinking and they are right on.
God help me to stop stinking up my life and start smelling the roses as I see and daily experience your incredible patience with me and love for me!
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