aka – the little discipline I love to hate.
Seriously – I tell Brent that *that* verse is not in my Bible. We joke about it. He ignores the “don’t eat bacon” part and I ignore this. All joking aside, I have seen quite a bit of abuse and pain come for women out of this one tiny verse. It hurts my heart to see people telling wives they should “submit more” when they are being ignored, unloved, and abused.
So seeing that chapter heading I gulped a little. But the author started it off with a salve for my bleeding heart by pointing out that this is the most misused of the disciplines. He then goes on to point out that it’s also one of the more important, because it offers the most freedom. The freedom to live your life and not give a crap about what other people do to you or think of you.
Okay, he didn’t really say that.
He did say that submission is truly living out the golden rule and giving up the tendency we have to try and control those around us – to try and control what people think of us – to try and micromanage everyone else’s lives. If you are truly submitted to Christ and others, you can live your life and be happy for others as they live theirs. You can love them without putting them in your own little box opinion of them. You can truly do unto others. Not because you are less than or better than them, but because you are a child of God and they are a child of God and we are all equally loved by God.
Of course within your family it is a little different. I am called not only to submit to Brent, but Andrei too. Andrei is my brother in Christ, and even more my son. What better model of leadership do we have but the Humble Servant himself, Jesus.
“Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” Phillippians 2:5-8
I put Andrei and Brent first because I love them. I want them to succeed because I love them. I let them do their own thing sometimes because I love them. I even express my feelings about their choices sometimes, but it’s because I love them. And if it comes a time that I have to go against them because it would be better than them, it would be because I love them.*
Submission comes out of love, not duty. It’s a joy, not a burden. It’s a blessing.
*Here I’m talking about a woman in an abusive relationship or a child who is making poor choices. Like a tough love situation.