In the stubbornness of the human mind and heart is the innate desire to be the boss of our own life. We like to call our own shots and run our own show. Before a child is very old they start using the words, "Mine!" and "Do it myself!" We embrace this as a normal and healthy part of childhood development. It's called individualizing. The child is learning that they are an individual separate from their parents and possessing their own thoughts and desires.
In our current culture, the rights of the individual are being exalted and idolized. We fight, march and protest for our rights. But, may I suggest that in the life of a believer, in the life of one who has received and accepted Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, perhaps we've individualized a bit too far? Let's look at what the Scripture says...
Since the Bible is the plumb line for how a Jesus follower should think, act and live, we have to accept what it says to us about living for our own rights. In 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 we are clearly told that we are no longer our own. This means that we no longer have the right to tell God, "No!", "Mine!", "I'll do it myself!" or "I'll do what I want!" Because we are God's creation as well as His through the redemption purchased for us by the death and resurrection of His Son, this passage tells us that we are to glorify God in our body and spirit. In simple terms that means that our body actually isn't ours to do with as we please. That means we don't have the right to think, act, respond or speak any old way we want. We are God's priced possession through creation and through redemption. We are his twice bought treasure, the joy and delight of His great heart. All parents know what it is like to see your child stubbornly, rebelliously go and do something contrary to their best interests and to your desires for them. It's heartbreaking. Because God wants voluntary lovers, not automatons, when we insist on our own way, while He may convict and warn us, while He may lovingly put up roadblocks to keep us from hurt and ruin, in the end He does not stop us when we stubbornly ignore Him. I bet that right now you can remember at least one instance where you wish you hadn't insisted on your own way. I certainly can! More than just one time, unfortunately! I can also remember those times when I submitted and surrendered my rights to God's will, when I chose to let Him have His way in and though me when it was actually the last thing my stubborn flesh wanted to do. In that yielding of my rights to the One Who has loved me since before time began and gave His Son in order that I might be adopted into His family, I felt His glory on me and working through me. I would liken it to the letting go that it takes in order to float on your back in the water. When we relax and quit resisting we realize that the water can hold us up. Similarly, when I relax, quit resisting God and let go of my own ways and stubbornness, I since the undergirding of His love, care and protection in a profound way. I see the truth of how foolish I look when I try to do things my own way and run my own show. I look like a drowning man flailing around in the water but refusing the help of the lifeguard.
Oh, how I want God to be glorified in me, in my entire body, soul and spirit! In order for that to happen, I've got to realize that no matter what culture is shouting, all of my rights belong to Him.