Saturdays for me, throughout the 60's and early 70's, were made for football. But if I was neither playing nor watching I'd make a point of tuning into ITV at 4.00 pm. This was when the legendary Kent Walton would welcome 'grappling fans', such as I, to the delights of professional wrestling.
Now, for the benefit of those of you who may be unfamiliar with the technicalities of this particular sport (?) each bout was usually decided by 2 falls, 2 submissions or a knock-out. And a submission occurred when one of the protagonists managed to inflict sufficient pain/discomfort by way of a particular manoeuvre as to compel their opponent to 'submit'.
Of course this isn't the only facet of life in which submission is compelled. For example, many of us submit, with great reluctance, to the imposition of the 20 mph speed limit throughout much of Edinburgh. And of course there are a plethora of rules, regulations and laws to which we must all submit so as to avoid anarchy, or at least community chaos.
But then, most of us these days, don't realise that in submitting to secular authorities we're actually submitting to God, whose Word, the Bible, makes it clear that...
'Everyone must submit themselves to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established.'
In other words, all human authority is simply delegated authority... delegated by God.
On the other hand, there's a form of submission which at first glance seems to be to our considerable detriment, yet it will actually prove to be to our profound benefit.
The Scriptures make it clear that our Maker wants the best for us... a life of true fulfilment...
'...I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.'
But we'll never know His best unless and until we're prepared to submit to His authority and overall control over our lives. It's one of the great paradoxes of the Christian life, cutting across the natural inclination and universally accepted principle of self-determination. This is in addition to what might appear to be the fundamental right that we instinctively have to order and direct the course of our own lives.
No! The way to experience the best that life has to offer is through giving, not taking, giving my life to Him... surrendering my future to the One who through whom I can become all that I could be. But of course we have powerful 'enemies' ranged against us... the world, the flesh and the devil. So we need to remember that to live what might be described as the victorious Christian life we must be up for a fight. As it's been said by William Gurnall...
'Wrestling' is one-to-one combat. Whether you like it or not, you must go
into the ring with Satan. There is no leave or vacation in this fight. We fight for the length of our life, it's a fight unto death.'
So as we 'wrestle' our way through all the trials and tribulations of daily living let's submit wholeheartedly to the Lord Jesus Christ. After all, it will be far better to bow the knee to Him because we want to... before the day comes when we have to!
'As surely as I live', says the Lord, 'Every knee will bow before me...'