The Power of Submission
For those who are unaware, recently I became permanent in my place of employment. I was given the blessing of working in my two favoured subject areas of HPE and Drama. I understood that with this incredible blessing came a hard road of professional development and character building – particularly as I work towards building a Drama department. I’m still ‘technically’ pretty early in the teaching game, so I am continuing to learn a lot of lessons. Some I can just absorb, practice and carry on, and others hit me for six and make me think about my direction.
I had one of those moments recently. I will be honest and say it actually impacted me emotionally and professionally – both in a positive and negative way.
I won’t go into the details of the background story, but long story short, I struggle with dealing with someone in authority to me as I have a very negative personal relationship with them. And as you can understand, particularly being female AND a Drama teacher, my emotional wires can be quite intense! So again, without going into the finer details, I had a situation where I basically had to deal with feedback from this person and I took it VERY personally (remember I said I am very emotionally wired person) which lead to some stress, anger, resentment, doubt and anxiety. There might have been a point in that week where I started questioning if teaching was for me.
But in God's grace, I was gently placed back on the right path. This was through blessing me with opportunities to learn, evaluate and grow through listening, reading and experiencing. Every small opportunity, even the ones that were a little hard to take, served a purpose and taught me something new. But there was one thing in particular that I really took away from the entire experience – the power of submission.
Sadly submission is such a ‘dirty word’ in Western culture because individuals are wired to see it as a point of failure, weakness and a lack of freedom. I can assure you that it’s completely FALSE! Submission is strength, integrity, growth and liberation!
Ok now I bet you think I’m a little crazy here… but let me explain further…
No one in this world is perfect, nor will they ever be. One's life journey is like a staircase that brings them ever closer to God and eternity. Some steps are hard to take and sometimes stopping is requirement. But it’s up to the individaul if they chose to keep going up or stumble back down. And even if they stumble down, it’s up to them to pick themselves up and keep climbing. Sometimes in order to do that, submission to the cause of the climb is so important…. Even with the childish tanty and desire to kick and scream!
Submission is taking away the ‘emotion’ from the situation and seeing it for what it really is. The biggest breakthroughs occur when you’re willing to submit to something that scares you or ignites the fire in your belly!
Through submission, you are doing three things:
1. Submitting to the position NOT the person: Can I start off by saying that submitting to the POSITION keeps it professional and real – submitting to the PERSON adds emotion and clouds the reality. Ultimately everyone is strategically placed for a purpose. Sometimes it’s hard to listen…. And understandably you almost feel like you’re about to explode. But listen and evaluate – that person is there because they have already experienced it for themselves. And ultimately following through with strength, integrity and the desire to be teachable adds something special to your character and influence.
2. Submitting to the cause: Take away the people and look to the cause! Why are you there? What is your goal? For myself, I want to build a Drama Department that has character, value, integrity, educational fulfilment, confidence, safety and opporunities for people to come to know Christ. As a Christian Drama Teacher I have to fight the continual battle of teaching my students about value, confidence and integrity as a performer in a world that doesn’t value that. So in order for happen, I sometimes have to surrender my feelings and desires of what I want now in order to receive what I truly want and value for the students I teach.
3. Submitting to God: God wants you to see the valleys so you can fall in love with the mountain tops! If everything was a bed of roses, then how would you enjoy the smell of them? In order to smell the roses, you actually have to smell the manure for a little while… and it sucks! But God NEVER places those people in your path because he gets a kick out of watching you suffer! No way! He places those people there to teach you to become closer to Him. In order to be obedient in obtaining the desires of my heart – I have to listen to the desires he as for me. In order to reach my goals, I have to adapt to fit that goal. And God has the keys through these opportunities – so it’s up to me to use them wisely!