I have been house parenting in group homes for a little over seven years now and have had something like 70 or so kids in my house during that time. Most of that time was spent at BCH in Illinois. However, this past April, we moved out to Virginia to continue this work with Patrick Henry Family Service. One thing that seems to be consistent with all of these boys is their dislike of authority. None of them want to recognize the authority over them. They have trouble with the police. They struggle with school administration. Nearly all of them struggle to recognize the authority of their parents.
I always have hope that they can correct this while they are in our care but rarely does this happen.
However, I shouldn’t be surprised. After all, I look around at society and see the same problem in adults. Heck, I’m not exempt from this. Nobody wants to be told what to do. Everybody wants to be in charge. Everybody wants to rule the world.
Sorry. I couldn’t help myself there.
Anyways, what is it that keeps us from allowing ourselves to be submissive? It’s not as if there are not plenty of opportunities. We have so many areas of authority over us. You would think we would get it eventually. We all have jobs and with jobs comes bosses. We all have homes and with homes comes governments. Our kids will participate in sports and with that comes recognizing the authority of the officials. Many of us are married and with marriages comes a spouse. Even those of us who are a part of a church has church leadership that we should be submissive to.
Then there is the ultimate authority. How do we view ourselves in relation to Christ? Are we submissive there as well?
I read an article this morning that has me thinking about the relationship between a leader and a follower. At the core of this is the issue of submission. How do we balance the submission to our employers while maintaining an individual voice within a corporation?
I think the key to this dilemma is found in changing our perspective. Many people see authority as oppressive and submission is only done begrudgingly. However, what would happen if we changed the way we thought about authority?
How about this?
What if we saw our role in the workplace as that of a supporter of authority? What if we went into every single day thinking, “What can I do to make my supervisor’s day easier?” For that matter, why stop at work? What if we approached our government’s authority the same way? What if our approach there was, “What can I do to build up the leaders of my local and national government?”
Oh, and let’s not forget about the marriage.
Many people treat their marriage like a scorecard. Who has done more this week? Who is the better spouse? Let’s get rid of that line of thinking. What if we looked at our spouse and thought, “What can I do today to make his / her day easier? What can I do to build my spouse up instead of placing expectations on them?”
Do you see the role of the servant appearing in here anywhere?
I think a person must set themselves to developing a servant’s heart if that person is ever to escape this seemingly natural inclination to fight authority. Anyways, I hope this helps you today. I’m going to spend the rest of the day listening to 80’s rock and looking for ways to serve.
Comment below. I’m interested in your opinion on the matter. You may completely disagree with me or you might think I’m spot on. You might just enjoy Tears for Fears. Let me know.
Oh, and share me with your friends.