Humble Submission to God

12 As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience.  Colossians 3:12, NRSV

Spirituality begins with the confession that there is a God and we did not get the job.  As such, we do not interact with God as if equals.  This does not mean we cannot be honest, that we cannot question, that we cannot challenge, it just means that we do so with the awareness that our vision and understanding are limited.  It also means that our plans and purposes and desires are secondary to God’s if (or when) they are not aligned.  

It means that whatever life throws our way, we (perhaps gradually) learn to accept and live with those circumstances, trusting that God has structured creation in this way intentionally (with all of its chaos, injustice, and suffering).  God does not exist to answer our questions or solve our problems; we exist to witness to his grace, mercy, forgiveness, and love.  He may choose to engage our questions and our problems and, in fact, He probably will at times, but we do not live with this expectation as if it’s something we “deserve” or something we’re “owed.”  This is when we cross over into pride.  

And, spirituality is not just between us and God.  It is just as much about our relationship to the people and world around us.  Living in humble submission to God means that we refuse to manipulate or cajole the people and circumstances around us such that we can create whatever we imagine might be the ideal version of life.  Humble submission to God means we accept the life God gives with all of its warts.  We refuse fantasy living and give up the desire to force others to conform to our fantasy.  

Footnote: This does not mean we do not exercise responsibility in our lives- it just means that manipulating, controlling, or dominating others is not a form of responsibility.