It brings mind John 15:4-5 - Remain in me, and I will remain in you…5 I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
I know this scripture is about bearing fruit in the Kingdom, but aren’t we called to bear fruit in our marriages as well? Trees have no shame, when the roots are healthy and properly managed they grow and bear witness to its purpose; to produce apples, oranges, grapes etc. Likewise, when a marriages’ foundation is strong it is supposed to bear the likeness of Christ; compassion, love, hope, Grace, Mercy, forgiveness etc. This cannot happen if we part from God.
As I prepared to write this blog, I thought of what this word inseparable meant to me as a Christian wife and other three words came to mind: surrender, submission and service. Since rededicating my life back to Christ in 1998, these words have remained in my face, because I refused to allow them to deny me of who I had become.
Accepting surrender, honoring submission and respecting true service were the three areas God so mercifully chose to work on in me first when I was getting married. I can’t feign ignorance when pondering why these particular three. They had me bound. They were very familiar as the distinctive areas to steer clear of when getting married. In my mind, they were the polar opposites of strength, independence and control.
I got married truly believing that I had a knowledgeable handle on marriage, based solely on what I saw, not what I had experienced.
I have to surmise that surrender was first because I had somewhat of a normal upbringing for a little black girl in an urban neighborhood: Strong & Independent. As we all know, there’s no true surrender found in independence. So, I had to be broken. It was painful, unfamiliar and scary, but it was freeing.
Submission was next because being the only girl between two boys; I had a severe case of tunnel vision (self imposed of course). I neither wanted to listen to or be instructed by anyone and I had begun to discover that I had no respect for men after my dad passed away. In no uncertain terms, whoever was called to be my husband would, most certainly, have a difficult time with me.
Service was last I guess because a surrendered heart and divinely acknowledged submission would lead to a life of servitude. Who knew?
God had me add those three words in our living room as part of our decorative scheme as a reminder. Now I could be embarrassed by it or I could allow it to do it good work and constantly remind me of who God has called be to be; a women who will always be committed to surrendering and submitting my will and my way to Him and Kevin. This will then lead to a heart that’s available to serve both God and Kevin lovingly and sacrificially.
SORRY ABOUT THE PHOTO!