Has been coming up a lot in our home of late! With a certain teenage boy of course but also in an interesting note from a friend.
In trying to explain her stance against alternative or complimentary medicine (which I had suggested because of her sons severe allergy issues) she seemed to include me as being under her/her husband's authority by virtue of rank.
Now first let me tell you that rank has always rankled me (sorry couldn't resist) as I know it's a necessary evil for the military to function but it is certainly not a means to tell who's smart or well educated or a good person! (definition of well educated in my book is not how many degrees you do or don't have but how well read you are, whether you have a love of learning, and a good dose of common sense). Especially among wives there is no place for this -- we are all dealing with the same crap. (Mal 2:9; Rom 2:11-12;James 2:1-9)
I am not now, nor have I ever been, under her authority; in fact if she were here and attending PWOC she would actually be under mine (President and all). Tim is not now nor will he most likely ever be under her or her husband's authority (she's in the reserves just fyi) as while they outrank him the reality is the chances of them actually working together are slim to none; and even if they were the reality is that there would prob be some infantry or field artillery guy around who's in charge. Plus ordanance normally takes precedence over meddac unless you are in a medical situation or in the hospital, doing training, etc.... this isn't a put down or saying one branch is better but just the way it is in the real Army.
So what's my point?! There seems to be a unbiblical way of thinking that any type of degree/rank or holding an authority position anywhere means you have authority anywhere. This is bunk... that's like saying because I'm PWOC President I have authority to make decisions in the commisary! Uh no... sometimes I wish I did, but I digress. Nor does the fact ones hubby has rank above my hubby mean he has authority over me. Now this can get tricky but it's still true .... I am under TIM's authority and no one elses (Even in Church I have put myself under our pastor's authority but in reality he still has to go through Tim and I am to go to Tim first), now them having authority over him can mean that they tell him to talk to me and he has to but it does not mean if they tell me something I have to do it! Except for when I was the FRG leader and actually was under the commander's authority directly, or the Chaplain advisor who can tell me at this point. Make sense? The old idea that commander's could directly tell wives what's what is no longer true and actually wasn't in the first place it just was done. This is why it's ok for wives to jump the chain of command -- within reason (meaning not willy nilly and respectfully, and YES I have. and boy was it a jump too but it was justified and ok'd by my husband). And Tim being deployed doesn't change the fact I am to ask him first; now that's not always possible but I try to keep him in the loop at least!
Does this mean I'm disrespectful of them and the rank they have earned? No because I understand that it was earned (hopefully) and they have worked hard for it. However a smart LT or CPT listens to the NCO's under him/her as he/she understands that they have worked hard and been around the block/understand the real way things work better than they do! No degree can replace experience.
Also having a degree or several, doesn't make you smart or even learned in the true sense of the word. Rather that you do have knowledge but worldly knowledge without wisdom is dangerous. (Pro 1:7). What do I mean by worldly knowledge? Well the idea that everything must be able to be proved is one... based on scientific fact.... NO I am not saying I don't beleive in science or that things are provable. Just that not everything is (takes faith to beleive) and if we say that we have faith and yet beleive everything must be based in science we are double minded and talking out of both sides of our mouth.
Back to authority... of course God gives it and He is the supreme authority but just as in other areas of our life we must be careful to make sure our views on it line up with His. Whether that's in childrearing or other areas of life. And we must be careful not to say that our way is God's way unless we can prove it irrefuteably with scripture.
May the Lord give wisdom and knowledge to His people and may we be willing to continue to learn of Him and His ways until we go to be with Him.