Submit And Surrender

Submit and Surrender…

There are lots of articles written about these two words. I even came across some that are not “Christian” that are well written with great ideas about how to apply these two concepts.

I won’t be able to cover everything in one blog. I’m sure you have read articles about these two words before. I’m writing about them because it is something I am learning more about.

I forget how these words came into my mind. When I began to study them, I soon realized that there is a difference between the two, and sometimes we confuse them. Then, as I did a little more study, I read that the word surrender is ONLY used in the Old Testament. I found this interesting. I have reached out to my Hebrew speaking friends to find out their thoughts on these two words and to discover if Hebrew has two different words. I will process their thoughts this week and maybe another blog will come out of their teachings.

What I do know is, the concept of surrendering to God is accurate, but it isn’t clearly discussed in the Word. We are often told to “submit” to Him, but not to “surrender.” The concept is there, but the actual word is not.

In my opinion, the idea of “submitting” is to do something because one “has to.” As a woman I am told to “submit to my husband.” Everyone is told to “submit to the governing authorities.” Husbands are told to “submit to God.” These are instructions we are expected to do.

Jeremiah 10:23 Adonai, I know that the way of humans is not in their control, humans are not able to direct their steps as they walk.

I Peter 2:13-17 For the sake of the Lord, submit yourselves to every human authority — whether to the emperor as being supreme, 14 or to governors as being sent by him to punish wrongdoers and praise those who do what is good. 15 For it is God’s will that your doing good should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people. 16 Submit as people who are free, but not letting your freedom serve as an excuse for evil; rather, submit as God’s slaves. 17 Be respectful to all — keep loving the brotherhood, fearing God and honoring the emperor.

The idea of “surrendering” is doing something because we WANT to. If we truly love God we will surrender to His thoughts and ideas and let Him lead and guide. It is easy to surrender when we know and believe that the person we are surrendering to has our best interest in mind. It is not as easy to surrender when we do not know how things will play out or what will happen.

Because we do not always know how God is going to “handle a situation” we can often find it difficult to truly surrender. To “lay our lives down” and let Him lead and guide it without saying anything is challenging. We still want to have our say. We still want to get our way.

We can say the same in a marriage relationship. When we know our partner has our best interest in mind we find it easy to “move together and make things happen.” When we question the motive, or mindset, of the other person everything becomes difficult.

Even when we think of surrendering in war, as difficult as it is, there comes a point when one realizes that to surrender might be the best option. Sometimes giving your life willingly can bring the best outcome.

I know this can be argued both ways. One could say that a person should never surrender when standing for Truth. So then, I guess one can say that sometimes to surrender means to “give your life.” Jesus surrendered to the Father’s will when He took our sins and nailed them with His life on the cross. In a war, to surrender might mean to “give your life.”

When it comes to life today, there are times we need to submit, and times to surrender. It is time for us to pray and seek HIS will on when and how to respond. Sometimes we just need to say, “this is what I’m asked to do, so I will do it.” Other times we might need to stand up and be willing to surrender our lives for HIS cause.

People have all sorts of thoughts and opinions about what is “right” and what is Truth. Knowing when to do what is not always easy when we only listen to the world. It could be quite confusing. All of this means it is just another reason to LISTEN to the Father and Spirit and let HIS WORDS guide. They will be the lamp to your feet and light to your path.

This week seek HIM on how HE wants you to respond. When a situation arises, ask if you should “submit” because you know you need to, or surrender completely and let HIM be in control even if it means “laying your life on the line.”

Shabbat Shalom,

Rose Horton

Photo by Jackson Simmer on Unsplash

The “S” Word

IMG_1058.JPG

Submit-to yield oneself to the power or authority of another.

I was not a submissive wife. I basically wore the pants. It was not that my husband chose or even allowed for me to wear the pants in our family when we got married; it was more that I was such a control freak that I grabbed them from him before he ever had a chance to put them on! My husband was painfully shy when we first met, I loved that about him. I however, had outgrown my shyness and had become accustomed to being in control and independent for several years before I married him when I was 26 years old. I liked things done my way and so I took over control of everything. Many times over the years I would force my control with anger, pouting, and rage. I could out scream and out last him so basically I forced his release of everything over to me. Sadly as I took over all the power I also dismissed all his authority. That is a huge mistake we women make. We want our husbands to be the leader and heads of our households, but we don’t like to release control. We complain that they aren’t leading the way we want but we have not allowed them to lead. It creates chaos and tension. I know I was not an easy person to get along with. It was my way or the highway. My shy husband allowed me to rage on for a few years, but then as we both decided to really live our lives by a Biblical Worldview, and start obeying God’s word, I knew I had to stop dishonoring him. When we really began to live by what the Bible says, our household took on a great shift.
My husband started taking back his rightful head position. He did not do it in a mean way or in a big blow up kind of way. No, it was more little by little he would begin to disagree with me and started to tell me exactly why I was wrong or how to look at something from his perspective. He would not let me pout or rage or get angry anymore. He would stop me in my tracks and tell me I was wrong. At first I can tell you I did not like it at all! As God continued to work on both of us in all the areas we needed a little polishing, the area I resisted most, well you guessed it, was “Submitting.”
Two years ago I stopped working outside the home again. I had been feeling the Holy Spirit working with me on being more loving and fully submissive to my husband. I always cringed at those scriptures on submitting, but now I desired to learn to submit fully to my husband. I asked God to show me simple ways to start doing that. The first thing I felt the Lord ask me to do was to make his lunch every day. That was a way to serve him and honor him. Next the Lord started to have me communicate or ask him permission before I made purchases, or wanted to do something with my girlfriends. I even started to consult him on how to parent our twins and how to handle other various aspects of running our household. I also stopped screaming and arguing. I am sure he was in shock when I started doing this. I know he must sit back some days thinking Wow God; You really are in the miracle business!
God continues to do a great work in the both of us. It was not that my husband wanted to change things to upset me, and he never abuses his power or authority over me, he just needed to take his rightful place as the head of our home and be convinced that I believed he was in authority of me and that I honored him. God designed the family structure really rather simple and basic as stated in the bible. Once I started to see these verses on submitting not as a cringe but as a confirmation that when I heed the word of God on this subject, then our household is functioning the way God designed. It runs much smoother and is filled with more peace. The Holy Spirit is in our home and our marriage because we are learning to submit and respect each other by submitting first to God and His word.
Do I always get it right? Nope, I don’t even come close sometimes. We will all fall short and that is when I so appreciate Grace! My husband and God recognize that I am trying to be obedient to this whole submission thing and that I have made huge strides in that area. It takes time, but I keep on submitting and loving and asking and honoring and making one sandwich at a time. ~XXOO Michelle Bollom

Instructions for Christian Households
18 Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting for those who belong to the Lord.
19 Husbands, love your wives and never treat them harshly.
20 Children, always obey your parents, for this pleases the Lord.
Colossians 3:18-20New Living Translation (NLT)

Wives, place yourselves under your husbands’ authority as you have placed yourselves under the Lord’s authority.[a]23 The husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. It is his body, and he is its Savior. 24 As the church is under Christ’s authority, so wives are under their husbands’ authority in everything.
25 Husbands, love your wives as Christ loved the church and gave his life for it. 26 He did this to make the church holy by cleansing it, washing it using water along with spoken words. 27 Then he could present it to himself as a glorious church, without any kind of stain or wrinkle—holy and without faults.
Ephesians 5:22-27 GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)