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Chairlift full of skiers at a ski resort with snowy mountains on backgroundTHAT word which evokes negative feelings in many people – submission. To submit is “to give over or yield to the power or authority of another.”

It was a week of vacation, a week spent on the ski slopes with friends and family, a week of living in God’s magnificent creation. Winter, cold, snow, skiing – how could it be any better than that! Worship exudes from me when I stand on top of a mountain and take in the snowy views. Snow poured from the clouds, fresh powder built up on the trees, which allowed the skis to quietly glide down the slopes. Perfect. Nothing was going to detract from this atmosphere. Nothing!

My brother-in-law broke my trance with “Do you want to improve your skiing?” Yes, of course, that is why I continue to take lessons from time to time. “Are you ready to spend the morning with me AND to be in complete submission to me? Do you agree with that”? This is how I read his question, “After all these years of skiing, you still stink at it; if I’m going to give up a few hours of my ski vacation to spend with you, you have to listen to everything I say – no whining, no “buts”, no bringing up what other instructors have said. Will you listen and do everything I say? Do you agree to fully submit to me?” Okay, okay.

The lesson began on the chairlift. “Let’s begin with the positive. You are dressed properly.” Period. That was all I got! Nothing positive about my skiing skills. I’m in big trouble. “Are you really ready to be submissive to my instructions?” Yes. The technical instructions began at the top of the slope. We started skiing. We stopped. More instructions. I began to ask a question. “Stop. I did not ask if you had any questions, just listen, and trust, and obey. Submission.” Whew.

By the end of the morning, I was wet with sweat (even though it was 5 degrees outside) and my leg muscles were burning; but there were visible results. My turns have improved, we are still friends, and skiing is still enjoyable. Submitting, to one who knows better than I, is not so unpleasant and has benefits. There is no need to fight it, just trust and obey.

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