This is one of a series of posts illustrating a beautiful portrait of humanity; of men and women who without even realizing it, strive to embody qualities Proverbs 31 embraces in all life areas – personally, with their family, professionally, spiritually, and in their love life too. Whether you’re a “Proverbs 31” man or a woman, you stand out from the rest; you’re a red rose among a field of yellow roses. You’re a man or woman of and for all ages, a role model of timeless strength and beauty, virtue and responsibility; a cherished life partner and a powerful entrepreneur too!
“Her husband is well known at the city gates,
where he sits with the other civic leaders..”
This verse is particularly interesting. At long last and seemingly out of nowhere, the 13th verse finally references the Proverbs 31 man. Yet the reference only occurs after 12 vivid descriptions and just before 8 more about the Proverbs 31 woman. While such placement would seem odd at first, it makes perfect sense upon closer reflection. For when we believe in and act upon this passage in faith, we are actually using our work, our time, our influence, along with our talents, resources, and words to encourage and raise others up. As we do, everything and everyone around us become better as a result of our presence. It is our goodness that inspires and frees others to excel to their very best. As a result of our influence and encouragement, our spouse and loved ones are well-known and respected. Isn’t this the true essence of submission?
Oh how I hear all the loud voices as I write this. “What submission?” “In this day and age?” “Not me, not ever.”In fact, just the sheer thought of submission has a way of sending a collective shiver up and down the spines of many. For in an age marked by feminism and personal freedom, many women would at least laugh at the word as though I were telling some kind of joke. Then there are those who find themselves on the other end of the spectrum; those who would not dare do anything without first consulting their husband for approval. Paralyzed by fear, they wouldn’t dare do anything remotely considered mustang-like. Admittedly, my partner would tell you I was once a part of the former crowd, laughing at the sheer prospect of submitting to anyone and totally embracing the mantra, “No one is the boss of me.” That is until recently.
I now truly believe that submission falls somewhere in between the two extremes. Submission is not oppressive as the feminists would have you think for it is not about losing one’s voice or one’s personal freedom. What’s more submission is not about another controlling your thoughts or actions as the latter would seem to imply. Rather, at the heart of submission is an attitude of service to others. A self-less, disciplined act, submission is the total surrender of our self and it is not done out of fear, but rather out of unconditional love we genuinely feel for others. No longer focused on our own needs and wants, submission is an act of unconditional love. It is in this goodness, in following the lead and serving the needs of others before our own that we have a real opportunity to touch and heal the lives of many, to inspire others with our words, to make a real difference, and most of all to create an atmosphere where others finally have the freedom to do their very best. Submission is about glorifying others, and it is in glorifying others that we also glorify our Creator, with the same glory eventually returning to us a thousand fold and in the most beautifully unexpected ways. In lovingly surrendering our sense of self in favor of others, true submission is not at all confining. Rather true submission is about letting go and is in fact the ultimate in freedom. For we are finally free to do what we are meant to do… to openly share our heart, mind, body, and spirit with others – all without conditions.
Remember … touch a life today “The Little Way” by following the lead and need of others. Also, if you ever thought to yourself, “I wish my community, knew…”, then be sure to visit White Light Communications at http://www.tothewhitelight.com.