Early in our marriage I had an eye-opening, heart changing experience that I want to share with you. We had guests over for dinner, and although I can’t remember the details of our conversation, there is one part of it that I will never forget. That would be when the young man in response to something said, replied, “That’s OK, because we all know who wears the pants in this family.” ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ And my heart dropped, because I knew immediately that he was not talking about my husband! I desperately searched to discover what had I done…what was I doing… that would cause other men to look at my husband as less than a man of honor? Now, I understand that we live in a day and time where to hear that said is a compliment to some women… but I wasn’t one of them. Those words sliced right through me!!!! They cut through my strong personality, quick-witted, take charge exterior…and they broke my heart! What was so bad about those words? Why would they cause me so much distress? Very simply, I was devastated to hear those words, not just because of wat they said about me, but because of what they depicted about him…my love…my sweetie…
As terrible as it was to hear that, it was one of the best things that could have happened (Isn’t God amazing?!?!?! He knows EVERYTHING!) Those words, spoken very casually as if that was normal and acceptable, were the beginning of an end for me. Let me explain…
While most women don’t view being perceived as a non-submissive wife to be a bad ting, I believe that would change drastically if we looked at the word very intently…which I did…and I DID NOT like what I saw at all. Let’s take a journey through a brief word study, shall we? The words below are all words that can be accurately used to describe a wife or a woman who submits to Gods authority (for the single woman), and the authority of her husband.
The definition of Submission;
to submit – the action or fact of accepting or yielding to a superior force or to the will or authority of another person
• archaic humility;
submission to authority
yielding (relinquish, bequeath, give up te struggle)
Bequeath (pass down or on to, entrust to)
docility (Latin dociles, from docere meaning to ‘teach’, apt or willing to learn)
Now, these are not words that we are particularly fond of. Their imagery is one of weakness, and who wants to be viewed as weak? But as much as we may not like these words, I have a feeling we will be dismayed at the next list. While the words above are all used to define or explain submission, the next group of words is used to define a lack of submission. We will focus on just a couple of words from above (the ones in bold) looking at antonyms 😀
to submit; yielding (relinquish, bequeath, give up te struggle), Bequeath (pass down or on to, entrust to),
docility (Latin dociles, from docere meaning to ‘teach’, apt or willing to learn)
The following words can accurately be used to describe a woman/a wife who refuses/resists submitting to God and her husband;
out of control
Whoa!!! That’s a lot of strong, descriptive words!!! Now lets pick a couple from both lists and compare.
A woman who submits to her husband’s authority as instructed to by God’s Word (1 Peter 3:1-2) is viewed as meek (quiet and gentle), compliant, docile (apt or willing to learn), and subservient. On the contrary, a woman who refuses to, or is resistant to the very idea of submitting, she is unfavorably viewed as recalcitrant, uncooperative, intractable, obstreperous, truculent, insubordinate, defiant, rebellious, willful, wayward, headstrong, self-willed, contrary, perverse, difficult. Now, you tell me what Christ loving woman wants to be seen as any of the above words?
So, when my heart should have been set on honoring God, and my husband and demonstrating a willingness to submit to both, my heart had actually been trained to pose as a good wife but silently resist and defy authority. While my husband thought he was marrying a gentle, quiet young woman, and a wife who was willing to learn, he had actually married a woman who was unruly, unmanageable, disorderly, undisciplined, uncontrollable, rowdy, disruptive, mutinous, riotous, out of control, turbulent….and she didn’t even know it! But other people could see it, which was why that heart slicing observational comment was made about me wearing the pants in the family…
Praise god my story doesn’t end there!!!! And neither does yours!!! While there is no honor for an unruly woman, God’s word says there is praise and honor for the virtuous one! Do not fear…The God we serve is faithful!
“And I will give them singleness of heart and put a new spirit within them.I will take away their stony, stubborn heart and give them a tender, responsive heart so they will obey my decrees and regulations. Then they will truly be my people, and I will be their God.” Ezekiel 11:18-20
Did you get that? When we choose to truly turn our hearts back to God He will;
1. give us singleness of heart
2. put a new spirit within us
3. take away our stony, stubborn heart
4. give us a tender, responsive heart
Why will He do this!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!
SO THAT WE CAN SUBMIT TO (OBEY) HIS DECREES AND REGULATIONS
Ladies, I have seen God first hand do exactly what he said he would do in me…and if you are feeling trapped in this horrible cycle than I want to encourage you that he can do the same thing for you. Don’t forget, I am sharing my story this week, but your turn is coming. I want to hear from you. Has your heart been changed? Let us know and take advantage of an opportunity to encourage others with your story! Join us tomorrow for the next video blog! Have a good night and I’ll see you tomorrow
“And further, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. For wives, this means submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of his body, the church. As the church submits to Christ, so you wives should submit to your husbands in everything. For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word. He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault. In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church. And we are members of his body.”
How many of us have ever actually thought of our husbands as THE greatest gift, outside of salvation, that the Lord in his providence saw fit to bless us with? I am sure that a lot of us don’t think of them that way, because if we did,we would treat them better than we do. Look at the way we treat gifts that we place a high value on; we package them with bubble wrap, or foam to ensure that they don’t get broken, or we put them away in a protected place where our children and any other potentially harmful elements can’t get a hold of them. When they get dirty or dusty we don’t display them to the world in that state, but we polish or wash them clean before we put them on display…and if they are injured, broken in a place, or cracked, we turn that part away from the gaze of any onlookers, so that in the eyes of others their value will not be diminished. We love and take care of our gifts, and we want everyone to know what our thoughts are about them…who gave them to us…how much they cost…and how heartbroken we would be if something happened to them. We communicate all of this, sometimes, without saying a word. But what do our lives and attitudes…and even our words, communicate about the gift…the prize that God gave us to demonstrate to us how much he loved us? It breaks my heart when I hear women destroying their husbands, their gift, with their words. It breaks my heart when I see women treat their husbands coldly or indifferently, because he had the audacity not to follow one of her commands, or to do things other than the way she suggested. It breaks my heart to see the pain and humiliation in a mans eyes, masked by a laugh or a smile, after his wife has shared a story that communicates how vast his baffoon skills have become. It breaks my heart to see the look on a mans face when he has been cut off at the knees, in front of family, his children, or in the company of friends, by the words of the woman chosen by him to be his helper. It breaks my heart when I see how the relationship changes when Adam realizes that his helper has helped to cause him more pain and despair than he ever imagined possible… even to the point of negatively impacting his relationship with his father…Does it break your heart????
And I know ladies…I know…He’s NOT perfect! And he doesn’t treat me the way I should be treated…and he can’t keep a job…and he’s angry all of the time…and he doesn’t spend any time with me…and when he comes home all he ever wants to do is watch sports or hang out with his friends…and I don’t know if I still even love him…or like him… And I think I would have been better off if I had married _________________! And the list goes on!! But guess what? We’re NOT perfect! And we don’t treat him the way he should be treated…and we may not be able to keep a job…and we may be angry all the time…and we may not spend any time with him…and when we are home all we ever want to do is watch our shows, talk to our friends, stay on the computer (facebook)…and they may not know if they still loves us…or likes us…and they may think that they would have been better off married to ____________! ….
That last one hit a nerve I am sure, because we allow ourselves the freedom to think whatever we want to think, but are ready to do a “drive by” if we even think that they are thinking the same things!!! But let’s take a minute and think about something; What if the only way for our marriages to change is for us to change? What if the only way our husbands hearts towards us will change is for us to change our hearts towards them? And what if the only way for us to change our hearts towards our husbands is for us to change our hearts towards God! And what if the only way for us to change our perspective on God was to open the Book he left on record for us and read the Word of God as opposed to listening to the world and what it say about our marriage?
Genesis chapter 1 tells us that God spoke EVERYTHING into existence except man. For with Adam God took his time and made (to construct, build, assemble, put together, manufacture, produce, create, form, fashion, model) him! And then from the rib of man he made woman!!! Did you get that??? He spoke EVERYTHING ELSE INTO EXISTENCE but he MADE US WITH HIS VERY OWN HANDS!!!! And then he gifted us to eachother!!! Adam was God’s greatest creation and made to have genuine fellowship…relationship with the God of the Universe!!! And Eve…. Eve was woman…also hancrafted by God…but made differently than man, because part of her man was used to help make her!!!! She would be unmade without him!!! And ladies, so would we today! Think of it this way; Eve was the FIRST and BEST gift Adam was ever given…given specifically to HELP him live out the lives God had commanded him to live by walking beside him and learning with him, and looking at him with the same wonder that she saw when he looked at her. We are designed to look ‘up’ to him in honor and respect…to be the reminders always of the man God created…HANDCRAFTED them to be!!!!!! And he is commanded to be the vessel that God would always be able to love us through…. But something went wrong… and the place we just talked about is the place we are constantly fighting to get back to… Adam is raging for battling with Eve because when he looks at her, he no longer sees the respect due him simply by being handcrafted in the image of God. And Eve is crying out in the way she walks, and talks, and dresses…and controls and demands…for Adam to notice…to attend to…to love her the way her creator promised she would always be…. But our starting points are wrong…our perspectives have been skewed by the Fall….