Being Submissive

“God blesses those who are gentle and lowly.” Matthew 5:5 NLT.

Your natural desire is to be assertive; the spiritual choice is to be submissive.

My thoughts and comments today are about “being submissive.”

Recently, I heard a person described as “having lost their filter.” That could probably be true of any of us some of the time. Without deliberation, words can be inconsiderate. With some people it’s a matter of words not being monitored; for a few it may be strong opinions not being moderated; for others it could be emotions not being managed. A measure of disciplined self-restraint is wise.

From Jesus’ teaching in the Beatitudes (Matthew 5:1-12), we have thus far considered the “poor in spirit – those who prize nothing of their own to boast, and to whom God gives all He has to offer,” and “those who mourn a pain they cannot bear, to whom God gives what He alone can provide.” Let’s now examine those Jesus described as, “meek.” They possess, “the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.” 1 Peter 3:4 NKJV.

(3) Being submissive. To those who embrace submission, an expansive circle welcomes them. “God blesses those who are gentle and lowly, for the whole earth will belong to them.” Matthew 5:5 NLT. In his letter to Titus, Paul wrote, “Remind the people to be . .  peaceable and considerate, and to show true humility toward all men.” Titus 3:1-2 NIV. That’s quite a challenge for all of us, but possible when you choose to walk in obedience. Submission brings you into the blessings of the disciplines of God. Your natural desire is to be assertive; your spiritual decision is to become submissive to God. Solomon discovered, ”It is better to be patient than powerful; better to have self-control than to conquer a city.” Proverbs 16:32 NLT.

The character qualities of being “gentle and lowly” describe the attribute of meekness, not to be confused with weakness despite the phonetic similarity. The two are nothing alike. A meek person is mindful of others’ rights, but their own responsibility. Meekness requires moral and spiritual strength. The Greeks described meekness as a powerful horse who submitted to the bit and reins. See James 3:3 NIV. Biblically, meekness is defined as, “disciplined strength under control.” 1 Peter 2:19-23 NIV.

“The meek are those who quietly submit themselves to God . .  who follow His directions, and comply with His designs, and are gentle towards all men; who can bear provocation; either remain silent or return a soft answer; and who can be cool when others are hot; and in their patience keep possession of their own souls.” (Matthew Henry’s Commentary (c) 1991 by Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.)

Jesus is the prime example; “Learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:29 NKJV. Self-control is not discovered within yourself; such ability comes from obeying the Word of God and submitting to the Holy Spirit. See Galatians 5:22-23 NIV. “Godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. This is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance . .” Read 1 Timothy 4:8-10 NIV.

God blesses those who are willing to live exemplary, Christ-like lives, “. . for the whole earth will belong to them.” I am not altogether sure of all that His promise involves, but it is true and will be grand.

My prayer for you today is that you discover the joy of a meek and gentle spirit.