Alanis Morissette sang the song "Ironic" and with those lyrics we see the irony of how often life turns out… whether it's having rain on your wedding day or worse never flying and and dying the next day… life can be filled with irony. It's ironic when we find ourselves laying on the floor of disarray in the aftermath of loving someone who really didn't love us at all… we gave our all; we gave too much of ourselves at the cost of losing ourselves. In loving someone who merely saw us as someone to elevate themselves… the end result is us having complied with them and their aspirations, them achieving everything they ever wanted and us painfully realizing we were just along for the ride… awakening to the irony that now we must rebuild from the very bottom; not only our own dreams but ourselves.
One of the many ironies that comes with a narcissist is related to obedience… isn't it ironic how a narcissist wants complete and total obedience toward them, especially their spouse and children yet they have little to no regard in being obedient to God.
The narcissistic sociopath rebukes obedience.
When we obey God we are submitting to Him, to his authority and therefore being pruned much like a shrub that otherwise tends to go astray. As Christians we obey God because we choose to… (not out of duty or guilt) because we wish to honor Him; because it gives us joy, inner calm and we can rest in peace of mind knowing He wants what is best for us. When we obey God begrudgingly we are not doing it with love but out of a moral obligation which leads us to following mere rules and regulations. Following rules out of duty is not truly loving Him and engaging in an authentic relationship rooted in love. Yes, God wants us to obey His commandments… He also wants us to have a deep connection with Him, to not worry about pleasing Him because we fear He won't love us… and instead to just love Him. He's already proven how much He loves us… how deep and far reaching His love flows because He sent His only son to die for us and our sins. We obey because of the awe of His great love for us. Because when we love Him… natural obedience begins to flow out of us like a river.
Obeying God should let us live a life of freedom, not seeming restriction.
As Christians we should be joyous in obeying Him, not feeling punished or controlled.
The irony is when it comes to a narcissistic sociopath they have no need for authority. They believe they are who they are due to their intelligence, their own abilities, their talent and hard work. They scoff at the idea of needing God and live a life of prideful arrogance unwilling to submit to Him. They rule over their household, their spouse and children expecting them to "fall in line" and comply because they believe they know better than anyone else including God.
2 Timothy 3:1-9 New International Version (NIV)
3 But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4 treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people. 6 They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over gullible women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires.7 always learning but never able to come to a knowledge of the truth. 8 Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so also these teachers oppose the truth. They are men of depraved minds, who, as far as the faith is concerned, are rejected. 9 But they will not get very far because, as in the case of those men, their folly will be clear to everyone.
The narcissistic sociopath is one who chronically chooses not to follow God's commandments… He or she covets what they don't or cannot have whether it be a material item, a goal, position of authority or power or even a person… perhaps they have their eye on someone that they know would elevate them (narcissistic supply) within the community and make them look even better… whether it be of a romantic nature or simply a new connection in their career. The narc is one who loves themselves versus others, despising those who are good and sees them as foolish weak-minded ones beneath he or she. They follow any and all carnal pleasures they wish to pursue and commit adultery at whim without any hesitation or sorrowful repentance toward their spouse, children or God. Their self pride waves loud and proud like a giant flag on their shoulder for all the world to see… they brag about their accomplishments, their home, their work, their connections and their car. They lie incessantly and feel no regret doing so… in fact, the narc actually believe it's others fault for them having to "lie and cheat" … because if their spouse were holding up their end of the bargain and being all that they were supposed to be; the quintessential perfect partner, they reason they wouldn't have had to lie and cheat to begin with… hence resenting their spouse. Narcissists don't wish to be pruned and would never ask God to chisel and transform them to His liking… instead they rebuke criticism no matter how constructive, well meaning and loving… eliciting a narcissistic rage that comes out with a nasty vengeance.
As Dr. Tony Evans, founder and senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship in Dallas, founder and president of The Urban Alternative, former chaplain of the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys, and present chaplain of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks recently posted on Facebook… "There is a lot of confusion today between the connection of obedience to blessing. Many believers assume that if they are obedient to God, they ought to deserve a tangible reward. We live in a rewards-based culture and that mentality has drifted into the Christian worldview in many ways. However, based on Scripture -- many people were worse off in the tangible world when they obeyed. After all, Jesus' obedience led Him to a cross. It is only when we align our understanding of obedience with God's overarching sovereign hand of purpose (and even pruning) that we will be able to approach and go through our detours with dignity rather than doubt."
What he is saying is true… we see so many living for Him and yet not living easier lives… if not harder lives. We often witness with a narcissist that they appear to fly through life without a worry due to their ability to get whatever they want derived from manipulation, money, charm, lies, love-bombing, etc. Yet… the truth is we are told we will face many trials and tribulations in this world. Our testimony will be greater with obedience.
New International Version
"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." John 16:33
Anyone who has been linked to a narcissistic sociopath knows that to try to positively influence them, to get them to change, to try to reason with them or hope and pray they see the light and realize that there is an authority greater than them has likely and understandably felt an inordinate amount of frustration. At the end of the day we come to the conclusion that the personality disordered one is not capable of submitting to anyone else's plans other than his or her own. But we don't have to remain chained to their ways… we can release them and the sin that they bring into our lives through their depravity. We can push onward, keep going, cling to our faith and embrace peace. We may have been linked to someone who had a prideful nature and always believed they had the final say on everything… but we know that's simply not true. God knows the truth and has the final say; He sees how they behave both publicly, privately and the condition of their heart. The irony is the narc tries to abuse you privately but God knows behind the scenes how you've been treated and yes, even how the toxic one treats Him.
1 John 2:3–6
We can be sure that we know him if we obey his commandments. If someone says: "I know God," but doesn't obey God's commandments, that person is a liar and is not living in the truth. But those who obey God's word truly show how completely they love him. That's how we know we are living in him. Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Jesus did. (NLT)