Submission Leads to Obedience
Hello everyone! I am so thankful you are back with me to continue on this journey to becoming “the lesser me.” You know, I started this business about 2 years ago, and one of the biggest lessons I have learned in the past couple years has been submission, which led to being obedient to the Lord. If you knew me growing up, or have known me in the past 10 years, you probably know that I have always been pretty independent. The funny thing about being independent, is that you don’t have to be obedient to anyone if you are the only one you answer to. For years, I lived my life answering to only myself because it was only me. Looking back at the growth that has happened in my life since then, I now realize that pride and selfishness are what accompanied that independence I was so reluctant to get rid of.
The word vulnerable comes to mind when I think back at the beginning of my marriage to Jon. I felt like my world had been shifted upside down! Not only did I feel I had lost my independence, I was struggling to let go of my identity of being a single mother.
Jon and I just celebrated our 6 year anniversary at the beginning of this month, and it was amazing! We have grown so much in 6 years. I am so thankful for him, and his patience with me! They say the first 7 years of marriage are the hardest… but looking back, it was the first two that we struggled the most with. My strong will and independence really took a toll on our marriage in the beginning. I did NOT want to be obedient to God.
Ephesians 5: 22-24, “Wives submit to your husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head over the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now, as the church submits to Christ, so also should wives submit in everything to their husbands.”
I didn’t see why I had to submit to my husband in everything! I felt I had been living my life “just fine” until he came along. After all, I thought, I was also older, and wiser, and had more life experiences than he did. (See my pride kicking in yet?) My inability to submit to Jon in the first couple years of marriage made it really hard on us to agree and be unified, and in turn we both did not feel very loved.
A few months after being married, we found out we were pregnant. Jon came to me with the idea that I should quit my job and stay home with the kids. I was appalled! Didn’t he know how many jobs it took me to get to this one? Didn’t he understand how hard I had worked, how many hours and part time positions I had to take to get here? He knew how much drama I had endured and how hard I had worked to keep peace with my co-workers. Things are going smoothly and NOW he wants me to quit? He couldn’t be serious! My response to him was very defensive. I wanted to protect the life I had worked so hard to build. Jon was so sweet in his response. He simply asked me to pray about it. I promised I would. And I did… with a very bad attitude, at first. Then, after a few weeks, God began to place women in my path who had chosen to stay home with their children instead of work outside the home. Listening to their stories and seeing the joy it brought to not just them, but their entire families… my heart began to soften to the idea. But, I was NOT ready to tell Jon yet. That would show weakness… that would mean letting go of my pride!
It was getting close to maternity leave time, and my boss had been asking me almost weekly if I had decided to come back after my leave. The pressure was on. I had to make a decision soon. So, I prayed…. a lot. God started to show me how prideful I really was… how I needed to humble myself and let go of me! Become less, so He could become more. Unlike me, He knew the company would close in less than a year. Unlike me, He knew this would be the best thing for my family, and even for me! He knew He had greater plans for my life! I couldn’t see it, so I had to walk in faith… humble myself and let go of my pride. I needed to trust that the Lord would provide and trust that Jon would be able to provide without my help. I would have to be obedient to what the Lord told me, which was to quit my job and stay home with my kids. Being obedient is not easy, it requires sacrifice, but when you choose to obey, blessings come.
2 John 1:5-6 “And now, dear lady, I am not writing you a new command but one we have had from the beginning. I ask that we love one another. And this is love: that we walk in obedience to His commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love.”
Although this blog has been about struggling to submit to my husband, that is just an example of one area we struggle with submission as women. Submitting to Jon would only be possible after I humbled myself before the Lord, and was obedient to the Word. When I did this, I gave God the control, the burden, the anxiety, the worry, and the selfishness. He replaced it with peace, with joy, and with love. I would love to tell you that in this case I submitted to my husband because of how much I love him, but that would be a lie. I submitted because of how much I love the Lord, and how much I want to be obedient to His calling in my life.
This is it, the point, the take away! Don’t miss it! Humbling yourself enough to submit to the Lord gives us confidence in being obedient to His commands because, when we become less, He does become greater… and THAT overflows as love, into every area of our lives!
I can’t wait to share Part 2 with you in my next blog! What God is teaching me about humbling ourselves and being submissive is leading into a powerful revelation about obedience. I hope you will join me again next week as I dive into what it means to be submissive to the Lord. I’ll be sharing what it takes to obey, along with how our obedience affects our love and faithfulness to the Lord!