Friday, April 4, 2008

The Conclusion

This is the fourth time I have started this post.
I would love to be able to sit with you face to face so that you could see the expression on my face as I share the things I have learned about myself.
Things that God has been trying to show me for awhile---somethings I have learned, but in this area I am afraid I have been a slow learner.
I want to let you know that while God was teaching He was also allowing testing to take place. By allowing satan to tempt me to take in things about myself that were not true-He was pushing me to remember what I know to be true.
Does that kind of sound like the situation with Job?
Remember his three friends and their truth that was mixed with blame and lies?
God allowed this.
What about Eve's time of testing and tempting?
She also was given truth mixed with lies.
Was God orchestrating these things from heaven?
When He walked in the garden looking for Adam and Eve--did He really not know what had taken place? Of course He did. He watched the whole thing take place. He allowed it.
I imagine if you sat down to talk with Eve after this she would have probably told you that she tested the things she heard for the rest of her life.
She had been duped--and although she could have resisted--she didn't.
Now, if not careful these times of testing and tempting could have caused Eve to never trust another person. She could have gone through life protecting herself.
She could have even tried to live a Godly life so that she would never have to be corrected by God or man again.
She could have had an outward look of submitting but with an inward resistance.
Understand?
I am going someplace with this so please try and follow my wandering brain. :)
While growing up I went through several things that messed with my brain and heart.
These things involved "Godly" people who knew better. How many times have we heard that?
Lots.
I was watching Joyce Meyers this week and she was speaking with John Bevere on the subject of obedience and submission. And some of the things even though I knew them mentally
really hit my heart this time.
He was saying that obedience was an outward action and submission was a heart action or attitude. Maybe a good example of obedience would be Jesus going to the cross. Submission would be that even after He asked God to take the cup from Him -He was still willing in His heart to go because it was the Fathers will. His heart attitude was the same as His action.
If He had gone to the cross out of obedience with resistance in His heart-that would have been obedience without submission. Rebellion.

Now we are never to obey and authority if they are telling us to do the wrong thing.
Like if you husband is home relaxing and the phone rings and he tells you to tell the person he is not home--sorry, this is a lie and you had better not do it.
But, you can still deal with this in a Godly way.
An authority is a position that has been placed there by God.
If I refuse to obey and submit to those authorities--then I am really not submitting to God.
Think about that before you say--"yeah, yeah I know that".
Remember...... submitting is about heart attitude.
If my husband has asked me to do something and I do it- but grumble on the inside while doing it-then I have given a form of obedience to the position without the submission.
Then there will be consequences in our house- because I am giving way to rebellion.
I may live with a man that does not think or act the way I do. In the worlds eyes he may even seem to be unworthy of respect. But, am I willing to respect the position?
God put our husbands in that position and unless he is asking me to do something that goes against what is taught in the word-I should do it as unto the Lord-with a gracious heart.
That is scriptural right? We should be doing all things as unto the Lord.
Now would be a great place to have a question and answer time.
But since we can not--just remember that the Word and God are the final authority.
And when it comes to us---it is all about what is in the heart. Man looks at the outward appearance but God looks at the heart.
The easiest way for me to see what was in my heart is when it came to my reaction to
male authority figures.
In younger years I was fearful of them and as I got older I became non trusting and resistant. Mostly on the inside but it was also evident on the outside.
Now I do not believe that we should innocently trust every person we meet.
But, I trusted no one until they proved themselves Godly. It was prideful.
And, if you were a spiritual authority figure---you were going to be put through some real testing by me. Not a lovely picture, I know.
I put my last pastor through the ringer. He could not stand me for a long time.
Then I began to learn that even thought he was not perfect-I could respect his heart for God.
I have thanked God for putting him in my life. I needed someone who would not be blown over by me- while God was working on my heart.

These are some of the truths that I have been learning about myself. But while God was busy-so was satan. God teaching truth and freedom-satan was mixing truth with lies.
He has not changed.
And he used what had a form of godliness to try and sow his lies.
How many of you know that there are many wolves in sheep clothing out there?
They strive to catch the sheep unawares and take them down.

So during the revival at our church----satan was oh so busy.
A little truth, an little subtle lie.
The funny thing is that the last time this guy came--he was right on. We tested what he had to say and found it to be true. So it would have been very easy this time to just sit back and relax and take it all in. After all he had already been tested right?
satan will slip in unannounced whenever he can.

I left revival feeling battered and bruised. Truths were spoken that could have been thrown out with the lies. But, I went to God and scripture and because I truly do want to be changed by God He used a Joyce Myers program to back up some truths.

For years I have been obeying authorities without submitting.
For me it was because of hurt that led to rebellious pride-the need to protect myself.

How many times in your heart have you heard your husband say something and rolled your eyes on the inside or maybe even on the outside? But, because you knew it was godly to follow your husbands lead--you said or did what you needed to do?
Boy have I been there. And as I have learned to let God change my life this has gotten better.
But there is a long way to go. The roots of this ran very deep.
These roots were acknowledged and labeled as just my personality.
Understand?
Who will help me submit to those that have been placed in authority?
God.
If you don't submit to the authority that is able to give tickets- what happens?
You have a nice policeman pull you over and you pay the consequences.
If in my home I don't submit (heart action) to the authority God has put there, then what happens? Strife, no oneness, and more than likely we will see the same attitude in our children.
How many of us see children who are unwilling to submit to authority?
Now, I am not saying that we are all to blame for the rebellion of every child.
They will have their own time of testing and temptation and they will have to answer to God for their choices.
But when I look over at my daughter and see her responding to her Dad the same way I have--who taught her? Moi!

This week she and I had a little talk. I told her I needed to talk to her about something-- and her response? "Is it going to be bad?" I told her, "no- it will in the end make life easier".
So we talked about authority and that it was put there by God.
And if we do not obey (action) and submit (heart attitude) then we are in rebellion to God -- and there would be consequences to pay.
Her response--"Mom, I thought you said this was not going to be bad?!" :)
"But it is not bad", I said. "If we learn to do what we are supposed to do with a good attitude then there will be no punishment. No punishment is good."

I know this has been a super long post. If you have made it all the way to the end--thank you.
We all do things to protect ourselves after we have been hurt.
Being my own authority was my way of protecting myself.
But, God is the final authority.
Do I trust Him enough to submit to the authority positions in my life?
Even if the person is not worthy of my respect--the position is.
Will I be tested on this---everyday!
Will I pass every test? Nope! I didn't the other morning. I started to beat myself up and God gently reminded me that I was not perfect and He already knew that.
Also, that years of unknown behavior take awhile to break.

Bottom line----It is God's job to protect me. DO WE BELIEVE THAT?
If I trust Him and the Holy Spirit it will make life so much easier.

This lesson has been learned in bits and pieces over many years.
It may be----- duh! for some, but I believe He will continue to teach me about true submission till the day I die.
There is so much more-but we do have live and laundry needs to be done!
Love ya!


10 comments:

Mary said...

Sharon,

I have also struggled with this and also for something that happened to me when I was young. I struggle with obedience to authority at times, especially in my home. I was a single mother for 17 years and I was the authority, so that has made it even more difficult for me.

Thank you for this wonderful teaching. You will be blessed for helping others in their struggles.

Enjoy the weekend, my friend. I'm praying for you and your family.
Blessings,
Mary

Sandi said...

wonderful heart spoken post. Thank you for sharing. Submitting is hard to talk about. Some people at church just say "The S word."

Alisun@ABrookeInTheForest said...

You could have posted about me in this lesson I have had such a hard time being submissive to my husband and to God first and foremost!!

This has been a long road and it is not at the end for me either, this was such a well needed post for me right now. I have to submit to my hubby on something I would love nothing more than to control myself to make sure it goes the way I want it too.

WRONG

I know in the end it the Lord who will do his will and not mine althoug I do roll my eyes and inside think why would you ask me to do that.
Oh thank you Lord for a friend I have never meet who has helped me in so many ways she will never know to what extent, I pray for all the women who have been touch by you in you biblical insight, you are a blessing to me and I look forward to chatting with you each day.

Denise said...

You are such a bright shining light in a dark world, bless you sis.

Edge of Design said...

For the reasons contained in your post, I have had to hang on for dear life to Psalm 32.

freetofly said...

Sharon,

I don't have the same reasons as you. But, I HAVE always & will always be working on yielding and submitting more in my life. You are so so right. I never put it in those words before (that John B used), but God is ALWAYS dealing with me about the "heart of the matter". So, I am AMENING you, Sister & saying I too am in the struggle with you!

We have so much autonomy and liberty in Christ, it takes great diligence to be in the Word and led by the Holy Spirit to make sure we keep "it" between the lines, don't you think?

Praying with you for God's rain to gently fall on your heart, your marriage, your family,
Maria

Connie@Little Red Hearts From God said...

I have so much to learn...

submitting... to others...

feeling like I'm not under attack...

Not always feeling like I need to have the last word... Biggie for me...why is that??

great post... makes me think...

thank you.. you always always leave me pondering about the whys.. whats.. and ifs...

love ya girl
Connie

Nicki said...

Wow.....this is a lot to swallow. I have too had this experience with my girl's and my husband. It is very, very hard when you are at one level and your husband is at another (I'm not saying yours is, but you know what I'm saying) But you are absolutely right, we are to respect them and to submit to them even when we know they are wrong. We just have to pray, pray pray that God will allow them to make godly decisions. Lately I've been feeling some decisions Krs has made aren't good ones.....but I just have to keep giving it to God and trust that He will show Him. I'm glad you wrote this all out, great stuff! Thanks!

Deb said...

My thats straight from your heart! Your awesome my friend. For me I had to give up my control and let God be God.Then I had my own FREEDOM, well submission then was no problem for BOTH of us. Yes men to, it goes both ways. Thats another topic:) Love Joyce Meyer and John Bevere, His wife Lisa has some great books. one day at a time my friend.
(((HUGS)))
Deb

SunnySusan said...

I need to chew on this some more..I know God is proding me in this direction also. It is such a heart matter.....
Love you sis