Do you find yourself butting heads with someone? Maybe it’s with your husband, your wife, or your boss. You have a conversation … but it feels more like a tug-of-war. One person says something, then the other … and before you know it both of you feel frustrated. You both want to get your point across … you both want the other to understand … your view … you both want something … and neither one wants to give in to the other … neither one wants to be the one to concede the underlying fight … the underlying battle. However, unless one person chooses to become willing to yield … willing to submit… willing to surrender their need to be right … their need to have the last word … their need to have the final say … the end result will be like locking horns … with no way in sight of how to get untangled. You see, there can’t simultaneously be two heads … it will just lead to chaos, confusion, and catastrophe. That’s why there is usually a chain of command or an order to how things are run. Perhaps this is why the Bible says in Ephesians 5 that we need to submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. When we are revering Christ we show that we are respecting His way of doing things … and His way of doing things is always rooted in love … the kind of love that is described in 1 Corinthians 13 … love that is not rude or self-seeking but, rather, love that is patient and kind. In any relationship both individuals need to be willing to submit … willing to yield to the other as necessary. This doesn’t make one person better than the other. This doesn’t make one person a doormat and the other person dominant. This makes both people responsible to care enough about the other person that they are willing to show true love … they are willing to let it go when a conversation becomes heated and it is clear it’s better to drop it rather than insist on being the one to be right … the one to win. In reality, the only way to win is to surrender. In that regard you are winning the war against animosity, anger, and anguish … you are winning by showing true love … you are winning by keeping your relationship with the other person intact … knowing that your relationship is worth far more than being right … far more than being the one to dominate. So, how in the world can you do this? How in the world can you find the strength of character to actually submit to one another and show that you are revering Christ’s way of doing things? Only through a personal relationship with Christ Himself. Only by allowing yourself to submit to Him so that His unconditional love will be able to flow through you to other people. You see, we can’t do it on our own … in our own strength and in our own power. Galatians 5:16 lets us know that when we yield our lives to the Holy Spirit we will not gratify the desires of our sinful nature … desires that include selfishness and bickering … desires that may make us feel good but are harmful to ourselves and others. So, the timeless truth for today is this: If you don’t want to butt heads with those you care about, lock horns with Jesus … connect yourself to Him in such a close and personal way that His love flows through you to other people … then you will truly be able to submit yourselves one to another and enjoy peace.
Are you frustrated? Do you feel like everything is coming against you all at once? Do you feel helpless to change your situation? Do you have faith to believe there are things going on behind-the-scenes that you can’t see? Things having to do with the unseen war between good and evil; between light and darkness? If so, as a child of God, you can have confidence that you don’t have to fight the battle alone. You have the God of Angel Armies on your side … and you can trust that He will fight for you! Want an example? Consider 2 Kings 6:14-17 (ICB), “Then the king sent horses, chariots and a large army to Dothan. They arrived at night and surrounded the city. The servant of Elisha got up early. When he went out, he saw an army with horses and chariots all around the city. The servant said to Elisha, “Oh, my master, what can we do?” Elisha said, “Don’t be afraid. The army that fights for us is larger than the one against us.” Then Elisha prayed, “Lord, open my servant’s eyes. Let him see.” The Lord opened the eyes of the young man. And he saw that the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.” So, who was leading the horses and chariots? Bible scholars believe it was angels … angels directed by God ready to protect Elisha and his servant. Through faith and through the power of Elisha’s prayer, the servant was able to see not only physically what was surrounding him (the earthly army), but also spiritually what was surrounding him (the angelic army). And, since the angelic army was being directed by God (the Creator and Master of the Universe), the servant had every reason to be confident that the earthly army was no match for God’s angelic army … especially since the Creator is always greater than the creation. 1 John 4:4 (ICB) puts it another way: “My dear children, you belong to God … God’s Spirit, who is in you, is greater than the devil, who is in the world.” So, with that in mind, the timeless truth to remember today is this: no matter what you are facing, if you are God’s child than you can have confidence to trust and believe it will all work out according to God’s plan … everything will be okay because God is in control … sorrow may last for the night, but joy comes in the morning! So, take heart, it’s not over until it’s over! Pray and ask God to open your eyes today so that you, too, may see for yourself (through faith believing) that there really are more on your side than you could ever imagine; God is fighting for you, pushing back the darkness! Believe it, then see it!