Independence vs. Submission

Onto the next chapter of ‘The Shack’ by Wm. Paul Young.  Here are excerpts taken from pages 147-151.

I found this to be an accurate picture and explanation of the difference between living independently from God and living in submission to Him.  For some reason when we hear the word, ‘submission’, it makes us want to turn around and run the other direction.  Yet, God not only desires that we live in submission, it was His design for us from the very beginning.

Submission is not about authority and it is not obedience; it is all about relationships of love and respect.  When God is in our life, submission is the most natural expression of His character and nature. It’s the most natural expression of our new life in Christ as we live in relationship with others.

And to think that most of us simply want a God who will just fix everything and make our lives run smoothly!  The problem began way back in the beginning in the Garden of Eden when man abandoned his relationship with God to assert his own independence.  Men have expressed their independence by turning to the work of their hands and the sweat of their brows to find their identity, value and security.  Women turned away from God to find their security, identity  and value in men.  Women in general find it difficult to turn from a man and stop demanding that he meet their needs, provide security, and protect their identity, and return to God. Men in general find it hard to turn from the works of their hands, their own quests for power and security and significance and return to God.  Power in the hands on independent humans does corrupt.  This independence, with it’s quest for power and fulfillment actually destroys the relationship our hearts long for.

Submission is not something you can do, especially on your own.  Apart from God living inside of us, we can’t even submit to God, let alone to other people.  Being a follower of Jesus is not trying to be like Jesus, it means our independence has been killed. God came to give us life – real life – His life. God desires that He live inside of us, so that we can take on the mind of Christ and live in submission to those around us.

Can you live in submission to those around you?  Can you live in an attitude of love and respect for those people who are in your life, even if they are not treating you with love and respect?  Remember, you cannot do this on your own.  You don’t have the ability nor the power.  But God does….and if He lives inside of you, it’s His power, not yours, that will enable you to do this.

Leave a Reply