Thursday, 24 October 2013


Lesson 2: submission is a sign of strength and not the omission of it.

‘Name me one organisation that doesn’t have a hierarchy’.

Those words sunk right into my mind like coffee to my sleep deprived soul.  They were so profound, so deep, made so much sense. That was the phrase, those were the words, right there was the imagery, that completely summed up what I had struggled all week to write.  Bunmi Olabode’s blog radio show had just injected fuel into my blog entry on submission.

I am part of the Spice Girls ‘Girl Power’, Destiny Child’s ‘Independent Woman’, TLC ‘No Scrubs’, generation.  Further enhanced by my background of incredibly strong and knowledgeable women, for many men I’d be way too much to handle.  I know my mind and can communicate it with little effort.  Problem is, my Jagged Edge ‘Let’s Get Married’ kind of guy had found me and in order to keep him ‘Miss I – dependent’ had to die. And die she did, a most brutal death.  One where she realised that her way was not the highway, the motorway or the freeway. It was a way and it could or could not be taken.

This ‘submission’ has been a journey for me and I don’t think I’ve quite reached the destination of unreserved submission. I’ve been travelling there for 5 years now and I’ve encountered conflict bumps in the roads and question filled roundabouts; wanting to move forwards but seemingly endlessly disagreeing with my beloved on which road to take there.

My beloved often says that no one is born a readymade wife.  And it’s so true! When asked what your lifetime ambition is, how many braided haired little girls do you know would cutely answer ‘a submissive wife with a calm, gentle and quiet spirit’.  Fast forward to today, change the braids to three bundles of your finest Brazilian/Peruvian/Malaysian/Cambodian/not-your-hairian hair and ask if their lifetime ambition is to be sincerely submissive.

In this generation the word submission is a swear word. The carefully drawn brows of millions of women arch up in pure rage.  They are angered at the notion of being thought of as weak and less important.  It conjures up images of women who are subservient, ‘yes sir, yes sir, two bags full’ kind of women. Weak women. Women who are so very afraid of speaking their minds that they are willing to look like clowns to please their beloveds.  Women who sheepishly walk behind their beloveds with their heads bowed, relinquishing their own identity.

But, I say that submission is not losing who you are. It is this misconception that has pushed anything that resembles submission out of the wedding vows.  When was the last time you witnessed a bride gleefully vow to love and obey their groom? Last I heard them they were spoken through slightly gritted, slightly smiling teeth.   And why is this?


Fear that agreeing to submit would mean that you would lose who you are.  Husbands and wives worldwide have abused the word submission, turning it into a curse rather than a blessing.   It is no wonder that submission has this vile reputation, when there are women who prior to marriage are vibrant and full of life and then they sadly transform into a shadow of themselves.  The men they fell in love with deem it fit to squeeze out every drop of life they have, controlling their every move.  This is a form of abuse and it should not be tolerated. This is not submission.

Not only is there the fear of losing your identity, there is also the complex fear of things going wrong, of negative consequences, of missed opportunities, of failure.  I’ve learned that even my best worked out and most strategic plans also have a risk (no matter how small) of the same disastrous outcomes.  On the reflection I think this fear has a lot to do with pride, the ‘I know better’ syndrome that plagues us all at some point in time. 

For me, submission is very simple… 

There can only be one driver of a car, one captain of a ship, one cook to stir the pot.  Like the guest on the radio show said, every successful business has a leader.  We aren’t both leaders but we both have functions, a leader isn’t a leader without a highly effective ‘follower’.  This does not mean that I do not offer suggestions or that I agree wholeheartedly agree with everything that my beloved decides.  God helps me with that.  I feel that in those moments, I need to refer back to the manual and manufacturer – the bible and God.  I cannot expect my beloved to selflessly, undyingly, undoubtedly, love me the way Christ loves the church, if I am not willing to play my part.  If I’m willing to bite my tongue when I know I have every right to speak or not to force my opinion when I know that I am right, I hope that I will enjoy a much happier and fulfilled marriage.

I was reminded this week of what a dear friend told me; it takes a while for you to build up credibility. Truth be told, your beloved has been the way he is for longer than he has known you. If you had two employees and you’d known one for 20+ years and another for 5 years, whose word are you likely to believe more?

Today, being a submissive wife today is not fashionable, it is not vogue and certainly isn’t worth it. I believe we need to revive the submissive wife. Don your submission like the vintage dress you’ve been craving to showcase.  It’s your strength and not the hand-me downs or ugly cast offs from your big sis.  I am willing to play my part to achieve the overall goal.  I am backing the mission of our family; I am forcing my opinions to be of less importance than the overall mission.  Me and all my self-glorified, self-appointed expert opinions, is sub (under, beneath) the overall mission of the family.    



  1. This is so true and on point! Great post!

    1. Thanks so much Cece. Loved your blog from day 1.