Surrender and submission. What a ridiculously daunting title. Two words that most women would rather extract from existence all together. Two words that our culture cannot stand. Neither surrender nor submission present a self pleasing reality, however I’ve realized that they have the power to bring about amazing and rewarding change. As many know, I am married with a new baby girl. A reality that I never expected for the 26 year old me. I’ve always been independent and in that trait, I’ve been protective and persistent in pursuing my own goals and desires in life. When my husband and I became friends almost 5 years ago, he shared a dream with me that immediately resonated in my spirit. We realized that we shared the same dream of creating a youth center that would teach youth how to pursue their dreams & God given purpose. What a coincidence right?
Years later, my husband began working towards making that dream a reality. He named it, created structure and even began the 501(c)3 paperwork to get it registered as a non profit. As he did this, I slowly forgot about my own vision. In my mind, The center became his thing and I was just around for moral support. Over the last two years, I’ve been supporting from a distance. Giving advice and showing up to volunteer. I even helped him create a schedule for administration purposes. Apparently, that wasn’t enough. I had been feeling for a while that God wanted me to take on an administrator role for Zek’s Dream Center (my major in college was Non Profit Administration; another coincidence right?). I resisted doing so because in my mind, this was his vision and I wanted to be administrator of my own. I didn’t want to get lost in supporting him to the point where I wasn’t focused on my dreams. I feared that by taking on a more prominent role in Zek’s, I’d lose myself. Well now, in 2015, it’s overtly clear that God STILL wants me to play an administrative role. When I expressed these thoughts to my husband, he responded as if he had been waiting on me to surrender for years! He expressed that ever since the day we shared our visions, he viewed this center as ours; as a joint vision. He shared that every time I called it “his” he became more and more disappointed that I didn’t want to be involved thus he was hesitant to ask for my help.
I had no idea that he desired for Zek’s to be a joint venture or that he desired for me to play a more active role in the organization. Instantly after hearing him pour out his heart on this issue, I became extremely convicted and regretful. I know that God had been pushing me to officially submit myself as administrator but I was disobedient because all I could think about was my own desires and my own future. As an independent woman that desperately strives to maintain her own identity in the midst of marriage and motherhood, I was so focused on myself that I was inadvertently creating distance between my husband and I. For the past two years of our marriage, we’ve been looking in two different directions. I was so fixated on my own visions and desires that I made no room for his. He was so committed to loving and supporting me that he wasn’t expressing his true heart. We were not planning together and we weren’t even sharing visions. At the rate that we were going, we were essentially planning to live a life separate from each other.
So now. I’ve finally surrendered to the idea of working with my husband. Sharing that news with him created something new in our marriage. A new trust, togetherness and assurance that we’re in this thing together. God is showing me that while it may be challenging to balance, it’s possible to maintain different titles like wife and mom while also maintaining my own identity as writer, entrepreneur and whatever else I desire. I’ve learned that my support for my husband is an invaluable piece of our puzzle that’s essential for the big picture. Submission does not have to mean that we lose ourselves. It doesn’t mean that we are being ruled by our husbands. Sometimes, it simply means putting aside our fears and apprehensions for the betterment of our family and our marriage. In this case, I thought that I was only being disobedient to God (which is terrible in of itself ); I had no idea the damage that I was doing in my marriage nor did I know the way that I was making my husband feel. Surrendering to submission has not only created new life in our marriage, it’s given me a new sense of identity and purpose within it.
Is there anything God is asking you to surrender to? Are you scared of submission? If not, great! If so, search your heart and find the root of your disobedience and fear. Talk to God; talk to your husband, family, friend, leader or whoever you’re supposed to be submitting to. You’d be surprised how beautiful life can be when you surrender to the very thing you have been running from.