Submitting to Authority

Open Your Bible

Ephesians 5:15-21, 1 Peter 5:1-9, Jeremiah 23:3-4, Daniel 2:21, Proverbs 27:6, Proverbs 27:9, Proverbs 27:17-18

When our daughters were young, there was a vast difference between a “vacation” and a “family road trip.” A vacation promised rest and relaxation while a family road trip required energy for hundreds of miles in the car. Once the car was packed with everything from bathing suits to trashbags, the road trip pep talk would begin. “Here we go! And, here’s what we can do to enjoy the ride,” we would say. Next came two instructions: trust the driver (no need to complain or repeatedly ask, “how much longer?”) and treat everyone in the car with patience and respect (no fighting). 

This public call to exercise trust and respect signaled personal responsibility. Each family member knew that a good trip depended on their attitudes and actions toward each other. In a similar way, the Bible gives us a public call within our church communities and towards the world around us. “All of you clothe yourselves with humility toward one another,” Peter instructed believers (1Peter 5:5). 

What a beautiful way to relate to others, right? But when the ride gets long and the passengers get restless, it’s not so easy. In a world that urges us to aggressively stand our ground, how do we respond when our Christian beliefs are challenged or mocked in the public square? 

How do we respond when we dislike changes made to our church’s music style or when our pastor seeks to biblically address current issues that make us uncomfortable or defensive?

How do we respond to our next-door neighbor who leaves his trash out, his weeds in the yard, and his car parked too close to our driveway? 

How do we respond to family members when they disappoint or challenge us?

The beautiful cloak of humility slides right off my shoulders as I arch my back, nurse suspicion and resentment, and demand my preferences. What does it look like to respond in love when the road gets rocky? How do we know when to defer to others or when to stand our ground? Apart from God, we don’t have the wisdom or willpower to hold a posture of humility. But filled with the Spirit, we can speak truth, sing praise, say thanks, and submit to others (Ephesians 5:18–20). It is God’s Spirit at work within us that results in such a countercultural way of interacting with others. 

Will we settle for complaining as we doubt God’s direction in our daily circumstances and relationships, or will we pray for the grace to trust Him? Will we settle for tension and fighting as we selfishly demand our own space and preferences, or will we practice responding to one another with understanding and kindness? 

Here we go! We don’t travel alone; we’re in for the long haul together. Let’s trust our driver and humbly offer each other patience and respect along the way. After all, it’s the only way we’ll enjoy the ride.

(60) Comments

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60 thoughts on "Submitting to Authority"

  1. Lisa Jones says:

    Trust the Driver and respect one another.

  2. Jennifer Lumley says:

    My heart needed this reminder.

  3. belle ingersoll says:

    wow , what a humbling way to get rid of our selfishness from sin && the things this world teaches us && to bid our ♡ s with gratitude for being able to love from His love but not our own. ✞

  4. ada hurst says:


  5. Erin Hector says:

    Great lesson and reminder :)

  6. Ruth says:

    Keeping our focus on God and Trusting Him allows us to approach others with grace and Humility.
    I am finding all kinds of reminders around me (sacred echos) that in this crazy time God has not lost control, and I only need to trust Him.

  7. Kristen Hudman says:


  8. Tasha Adams says:


  9. Caralee Lilly says:

    Thank you!

  10. Victoria E says:

    Finally read this on the website ! Super glad I did. I am facing a decision in which I really need God’s wisdom , please can I ask for prayers? I am very torn on which way to go in this matter. Thank you.

  11. Chris says:

    I am just now reading because I thought it was my internet!! Great comments

  12. SarahJoy says:

    For those who can’t see the readings:
    Check the She Reads Truth website.

  13. SarahJoy says:

    So many challenging comments to go along with this convicting set of passages and reflection. Whew!

    We just had a bunch of time with family (wedding) and traveling with our children. I feel the truth of not fully submitting everything to God. Looking back there were some decisions I made in which I did not ask for His direction. I could have avoided some real frustrations if I had. My prayer life was definitely on low gear this week. I don’t remember who mentioned prayer as a key component, but that definitely has me thinking. God help me to submit my plans to you, so that I may live humbly with others.

  14. TAra DXee says:

    Can’t see on the app. Using iPhone 11

  15. Marla Olsen says:

    Thank you for the status update

  16. Skylar Hilton says:

    Hello dear sisters! I hope you are all doing great!

    Obedience to God is one of the things that people who are not Christians think is “Restrictive”…. but they don’t understand that it’s one of the best things in the world. It’s not easy for humans to submit to people because of the selfishness that is inside of us… but to combat this, we have to ask God to take our rebels hearts and make them His. And we shouldn’t expect anything in return when we submit ourselves to God… because God DOES NOT owe us anything… but we should simply enjoy being God’s…

    If we want to rebel against anyone,… we should rebel against American culture that says we don’t need a savior or God.. because we all need Him so desperately

  17. Hannah-Rose Dallos says:

    Glad it’s not just me!

  18. Lynda Wormald says:

    If you go to the website you’ll find the readings there. Apparently “he reads truth” app is working fine so I wonder why “she reads truth” is not?

  19. Maria Dobbs says:

    reflection day / grace day ?

  20. Lori Boyd says:

    I have no content on the screen in the app.

    1. She Reads Truth says:

      Hi Lori! We’re aware of the glitch in the app and are working to fix it soon. You can read along with us on our website in the meantime, Thanks for your patience. -The SRT Team

  21. Beth Cohen says:

    Same for me.

  22. Dorothy says:

    Sisters I would like to ask for prayer, I’m going to spend Thanksgiving with my ex-husband’s family. Originally my son and d-i-l were going to have it at there house but that changed and it will be at one of my son’s cousin’s house. I’m on good terms with everyone in the family but my ex-husband that’s why I decided to go. I’m not sure if he and his girlfriend will be there or not but if they are he has a tendency to say things that “rub me the wrong way” and I “open mouth and insert foot”. So I need prayer for tack and patience and kindness and humility. Thank you.

  23. Victoria E says:

    Wow Nads thanks for sharing that powerful quote !

  24. Sandra Williams says:

    I can’t see anything either.

  25. Victoria E says:

    I can’t see the readings today either but I am blessed by your comments here today. Traci praying especially for you right now.

  26. Heather Hahn says:

    Mine is black as well

  27. Mercy says:

    Reading today’s topic brought me to check again the fruit of the Holy Spirit, among which are gentleness, kindness, long-endurance and self-control. All these traits will make it pretty simple and easy to submit, definitely, the more abundant they are in our characters, the easier to submit /yield. However, then I remembered the Lord says, be bold and very courageous as well, and I pondered, so which Lord? The applications for these 2 stances are quite different. Boldness and courage are characters required to follow/ observe all things He teaches. And fruit of the Spirit is not for following the teachings, but for others to eat, imagine if you’re a tree bearing fruits, that fruits are not for the tree to eat, but for the benefits of the community to enjoy its sweetness (or sourness or bitterness in some cases- fruits of the flesh), and God is the gardener/grower of the trees. You know how they say if you squeeze a lemon, lemon juice comes out, the substance within will come out. And God will continue to bring pressure/tests to squeeze us, and until Jesus is the substance that comes out of us, He will keep on refining us. May we have the grace and power from up high to be like Him, let the sweetness be refined to be like the fragrance of Jesus. Be blessed sisters.

  28. Dorothy says:

    This hit home for me because lately I was wondering why my brothers were calling and keeping in touch with my sister every week but I have to reach out to them when I want to know something or tell them anything. But I after thinking about it and humbling myself maybe they have taking to heart what my father said a little over 18 years ago to my oldest brother, “She’s strong, she can handle a lot. Her faith runs deep.” My sister has had a lot happen in the last two years and is a recovering alcoholic. Yes she has faith but her faith has waivered at times.
    Thank you Lord for showing me why You have been doing what You have been doing. Thank you for the support of this community, of my biological family, of my adopted family, my church community and of my friends. Lord continue to remind me, in Your subtle ways and, sometimes, not so subtle ways that You are there for me. I can rely on You no matter what. Amen.
    Sisters, remember to be humble and be blessed. Remember you are loved no matter what you do.

  29. LindaK says:

    “Submission can be difficult to kneel into” How true! Just catching up on all the comments from the weekend. So much to pray for health, strength, grief, relationships. Prayers for all in this community for a peaceful Thanksgiving Day with your family and friends. I would like to ask prayer for surgery on my right hand for trigger thumb next Monday (11/29). Love to all

  30. Foster Mama says:

    So many great comments today but, ARINA’s and HEIDI’s really pierced right to my heart…thank you.

    I feel like the mechanism inside me that says “Think (and think diligently) before you speak!” has never been particularly very operational :D…Lord, You are able!!

    KELLY – The feeling inside me that Monday morning’s meeting could not happen was SO strong that I actually sent an apologetic email to cancel it (never done that before); sure enough, having not read my email, she called because SHE needed to cancel. STILL, why it created such unrest in my gut is a mystery.
    The meeting PREVIOUS to that was pretty good and I felt heard but, still there are unanswered questions… getting easier to put it in God’s hands!

  31. Jennifer Ficklen says:


  32. Nads says:

    Good morning Sisters,

    I received this quote today from Pope Shenouda III (the previous pope of the Coptic Orthodox Church) and thought it related nicely to both yesterday and today’s readings:

    “Some loving people may weep for the sins of others. It was said that Saint John the Short (one of “the Desert Fathers”) used to weep when he saw a person commit a sin. He said “My brother fell today and perhaps I may fall tomorrow. He may fall and repent, and I may fall and not repent.” But when we hear of a fall we unkindly judge the one who has fallen.

    If you heard that an escaped lion had killed a person in the next town, would you condemn that person because he could not escape from that lion? “Your adversary, the devil, walks about like a roaring lion… ” (1 Peter 5:8).

    If you hear that an infectious disease has spread to all parts of a city, will you weep for the inhabitants or condemn them?”

    Lord Jesus, work in our hearts to give us wisdom, humility and discernment re: how / if / when we are called to “sharpen” our brother or to look rather into ourselves.

  33. Traci Gendron says:

    I want to thank you all again for your prayers. I feel God holding me up! XO

    HEIDI – your comment spoke volumes to me. My prayers have been for Tanner for most of his life, that I forgot to pray for what I need and how I respond/react to others. Thank you for this wonderful reminder. I’m worried through my grief that I may be short tempered with others. I will need God’s grace to get me through the holidays with humility and a peaceful spirit.

  34. Sharon, Jersey Girl says:

    It’s hard to be submissive and to humble yourself under others, but it becomes a whole lot easier when we are first submissive to God and under His authority. We must “abdicate” the throne of our heart to the Lord Jesus Christ. Once we have, then God can work in us and through us to accomplish His will and make us more like Jesus.

    Safe traveling mercies for all who are traveling this Thanksgiving holiday.

    Prayers for @Traci, and for all who will have an “empty seat” at their table. May God comfort, strengthen and help.

  35. Churchmouse says:

    I don’t like humble pie when it is served to me. The only way to avoid the embarrassment that comes with deserving it is to cultivate a surrendered spirit. It is hard to submit to authority if I am not fully submitted to God Who gives me the strength to submit in the first place. Every day the challenge is to obey Him or disobey Him, to be a committed follower of Jesus or not. It is simple but it is not easy. So I pray for strength to submit and to humbly honor God in the process. I set aside my pride and release the results to God. He has permitted those in authority and He knows what He is doing.

  36. Lisa Z says:

    Oh yeah “Submission can be difficult to kneel into.” Well said, Angie.
    I will practice today tooting my own horn less so I can better hear the toots of others. Lord help me silence and listen.

  37. Beth Norris says:

    Such a wise reminder Charlie! I’m so similar and will pray for God to help me listen and support.

  38. Mari V says:

    Good morning SRT sisters, If you go to the website you can see it there. I couldn’t see it on the app either.

  39. Marla Olsen says:

    I am unable to see this today. It’s blank, but still allows me to mark it read.

    1. She Reads Truth says:

      We’re hoping to have this fixed soon and appreciate your patience. You can read along with us on our website in the meantime, -The SRT Team

  40. Laura says:

    Churchmouse – I just read your comment from yesterday about just talking to your granddaughter. How precious! As a first grade teacher and in the age range of a grandma, I feel like my students talk to me like they do their grandma. And two things I have learned as I get older – kids love to talk AND they love their grandparents! I am looking forward to being blessed to show hospitality in this way to my own grandchildren some day and I try to take time to listen to my little first graders as much as I can. Thanks for the beautiful story!

  41. Donna Wolcott says:

    Amen Ariana! I needed to hear your message. Thank you. Traveling mercies for any leaving for the holiday today.

  42. Heidi says:

    I notice when my ability to lean in, demonstrate patience and respect starts diminishing- being replaced with annoyance and general lack of concern for what my words may cause in someone else- 100% of the time (in MY case) I’m severely lacking in prayer time. Not prayer over those ppl or circumstances or anything specific to what I’m reacting to- JUST. PRAYER. My lifeline, my source of all things good, my outlet of pressure, worry, fear, annoyance and my inlet of wisdom, kindness, patience, joy- It’s our most powerful weapon for a reason. It gives us what we need to demolish the enemy AND what we need to demolish the “self” that can cause more damage than we realize. Even as simple as choosing a verse of power and encouragement and plugging in the names of my family/friends/whomever and praying it sincerely over them and their lives, gives me a heart transplant with how I see and handle others.

  43. Susan Crocker says:

    Me too!

  44. Briana Bennett says:

    Not working for me today. It’s blank.

  45. Charlie says:

    Arina’s comment — “I need to think before I speak or have an opinion, so that I may do what the Lord’s will is” — is one I can totally relate to. I remember once in a small group 20 years ago, as we were all heading out for the holidays and to families, one member prayed that she would know when to speak and know when to be silent. This is something I need to pray every single time I am in a group of people! Although I have definitely grown through the years, my go-to posture is often “arch my back, nurse suspicion and resentment, and demand my preferences.” (Baby and only girl of a big family?!) Lord, as we head into the holidays, may I soften my posture, listen patiently and wholly, and offer words of support and encouragement, regardless.

  46. Taylor says:

    It’s been hard to wake up in time to do my devotions but I’m here and I am just so thankful for this community! @Traci Gendron I’m praying for you and sending love, hugs, and condolences <3

  47. Maura says:

    Lexi B, I am sorry for your loss, but thankful your uncle is no longer suffering. Rachel, praying for your husband. Peace of Jesus over him, and the Holy Spirit’s guidance in where to seek help for answers if it continues. Traci, you are in my prayers asking His strength for you, His love embracing you. sending hugs and love. Angie, Loved HRT tbis morning too. I would like to be a Bob as well, how beautiful this faithfulness. As I have read your stories I see your faithfulness and God working in tbem, and I would like to be an Angie as well. Blessed by so many of you my Sister’s of faith here. Praying for you all, that we would be faithful, bold in prayer, trusting Him, and humble taking Jesus example of being willing to be submissive to the Father’s will, even to death. Hard to fathom such humility, such love.

  48. Barbara Isabell says:

    I’m having the same issue as well!

  49. Kelly H says:

    That’s what I see on the app, too. You can find it online on the website.

  50. Michelle Patire says:

    Praying for all ****

  51. Michelle Patire says:

    Beautiful reminder to remember any crowns of leadership / authority we have on Earth fade, but we should remember eternal life — our unfading crown of glory. I love that. Blessings to you all, today. Thinking of you, Traci G, and your family. Praying you sense the Lord near. Praying for me all of you struggling with loss, pain, and hardship. May the God of comfort give you love, wisdom, grace, and friendship in this time. The seasons change :)

  52. Laura Lamb says:

    Can’t get to the day’s reading at all. It goes straight to “Tap to mark as read”.

    1. She Reads Truth says:

      Hi Laura! We’re hoping to have this fixed soon and apologize for the inconvenience in the meantime. We’d love for you to read with us on our website here, We’re grateful for you! -The SRT Team

  53. Angie says:

    Submission can be difficult to kneel into, but once on our knees, we realize the weights were never ours to carry in the first place and we can lay them down. It is a lesson I have to learn again and again and again. He Reads Truth today is so good. Specifically I am challenged to “be a Bob.” We push and do so much in the every day, but what really matters is a life lived humbly and prayerfully. As the writer says, we are all clothed the same in the kingdom of heaven, clothed in humility. There has never been one more humble than Jesus, may His covering be over us daily.

  54. Kristen says:

    Thank you, Arina! May God please help me in these areas too. I can’t do this without Him. I want to think before I speak, be humble, do things for the right reasons and not be selfish or self exalting. I need the guidance of the Holy Spirit and help not to grieve Him. There are so many Scriptures that talk about pride, our words, and how to live wisely, may the Holy Spirit brings these to my remembrance and May I take time to read and know His Word more and actually be changed and be a doer of the Word and not just a hearer. Amen.

  55. Blessed Beth says:

    You know I just wrote to some friends about the busyness of this season. How I love to do for others, but I so often get so into it I lose focus on myself and for whom I do. I pray that we remain focused of our attitude and learn to slow down and give Him thanks.

  56. Kelly says:

    Arina – well said! Thank you.

    FOSTER MAMA – how did the meeting go?

    AG – praying for your cousin’s baby.

    BRITTANY CARBONE – praying for your baby too

    ASHLEY B – may God bring relief to your airways and sweet sleep to your family

    GRAMISUE – how is the bronchitis?

    RACHEL from TX – praying for your husband’s anxiety

    LEXI B – praying for your family.

    TINA – how are you feeling? How much longer do you have to quarantine?

  57. Arina says:

    Submitting to other, being humble, considering others as more important. That’s definitely not my natural first reaction. Instead I defend my own interest, seek to glorify myself, even with the Spirit living inside me. I need to pay careful attention to how I walk, as Paul says (Ephesians 5:15). I need to make the most of the time, because if I just go with the flow, with my instinctive reactions, I so easily am unwise, unlocking, foolish. I need to think before I speak or have an opinion, so that I may do what the Lord’s will is.