“Father, make of me a crisis man. Bring those I contact to decision. Let me not be a milepost on a single road;
make me a fork
, that men must turn one way or another on facing Christ in me.” - Jim Elliot

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Fruit of the Spirit: The S-word, Submission

I know. I know. I'm using the S-word, again! It's not that I want to... but I guess God is working something in me. Because trust me... when I write about a topic... it normally means that God is refining me in that area.

I didn't want to leave you wondering how my submission (oops! There it is!) to the spiritual authority placed over me turned out. See here for more details. I have to say in both cases... God knew what He was doing. Yes, it's true and I freely admit it. God had the greater thing in mind.

In both cases, I didn't want to submit because I wanted to control the outcome. I thought I knew what was best. I was AFRAID of the choices and, therefore, consequences, that others were making for me. I couldn't see the outcome, so I dreaded it.

So, you've heard the before... but here is the after. It turns out that the pastor that was selected by our Board of Deacons... would have been my first and only choice. However, I thought that it would be impossible... improbable... that he would ever leave his current assignment to come back to Portland. I had given up on the thought. I wouldn't have even pursued it. But not our Board... they prayed... they submitted themselves before God... and asked for the desires of their hearts. And God answered their prayers. And mine, too.

The other instance I briefly mentioned had to do with the closing of Christopher's elementary school. How my heart was broken and torn. I fought for the school to stay open, but when it closed I tried to soothe my soul with the following verse:

Those who sow in tears
will reap with songs of joy.

He who goes out weeping,
carrying seed to sow,
will return with songs of joy,
carrying sheaves with him. Psalm 126:5-6 NIV

And so I comforted myself by thinking that wherever Christopher would attend school, I would be like a seed planted. Comforting others. Encouraging others. Little did I know, how the move to a new school would benefit me... and Christopher.

So, here's my challenge today, sisters... I want you to think of a time when you submitted yourself to God. I want you to think about the "before" and the "after" of your submission to His will.

I challenge you to use the S-word... today!


a portland granny said...

Submission has always been hard for me. Because I am single and very independent, I've always had a hard time submitting myself to male authority. I can't think of a specific time, but gradually I've learned something about submission to the elders at church. Its hard to run things by them, before taking action, but I'm learning...and really, in the scheme of things, what difference does it make? It usually only slows my projects down a day or two...and my project is under their authority which feels right.


I have learned to let go and let God more and more the older I get.. all of that wasted time.....
I am so happy that He chose the perfect person for your church!

just lisa said...

wow! as always I am so inspired by your words of encouragement here. thank you.

Our church is currently selecting a new pastor too - out of 120 applicants....I really want our pastor to stay - but his wife is very ill so I understand.

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

God is challenging me to submit in one particular area of my life. It's a bit scary on the front end, but as I look back, I can see how He has birthed beauty through my submission. I'm looking for the same with this one challenge.

Happy Monday~elaine