Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Christian Participation in Nation Building – Submission to Authority
Roman 13: 1-7
v1 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities...
Taking orders is difficult. Like athletes yelling at officials in sports, our natural reaction is to rebel against those who exercise authority over us. We may even feel the need to attack them behind their backs not because we disagree but because we don’t like the idea of someone being able to judge us.
As Christians, whenever we struggle to submit to authority, we feel guilty. We also feel undervalued if we do not defend ourselves against crushing authority.
We have confused our identities with our roles. Our identity is who we are. Our role is the position or office that we fill.
People say they are “called” to be a doctor, a teacher, a nurse, or a businessperson. They attach their identity as a person to their role. Scripture says our identity is in Christ, which frees us to submit to authority.
Jesus took the very nature of a servant and did not feel threatened by those he was serving because he knew his identity in God, allowing Him to serve humbly without feeling degraded.
If we hope to follow Scripture, we must separate our identity from our roles. Ask yourself this question: When I die and go to heaven, will I still have this label/role?
In heaven, we will not be married to our spouses (Matthew 22:30), we will not still be parents to our children (John 1:12-13), we will not be citizens of an earthly country (Philippians 3:20), and we will not still have our corporate titles (Luke 16:25). What will remain is the life of Christ uniquely expressed through our truest selves.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
We will fulfill many offices, positions, and roles in this world, yet called to have only one identity in Christ. If we are not secure in who we are to Christ, we will always feel threatened, devalued, and like a failure in our earthly roles.
Dear Lord, may we seek to fulfill our roles through fully embracing our identity in Christ as Scripture instructs. AMEN
Benny Thomas, Long Island MTC
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church