Thursday, December 1, 2011

Marriage, HELP! Part One: Wives

Most women don’t like the word “submit.”  It can be as repulsive and offensive as the worst swear word, yet it can also be a word that brings peace.  …..still reading?  Good!  Let me explain…..

Here’s what the Bible says:

Ephesians 5:22-24
22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.  (I added the highlight)

Then in Colossians 3:18
18 Wives, submit yourselves to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.

Finally in 1 Peter 3:1,2
1 Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, 2 when they see the purity and reverence of your lives.

Two of the above passages are sub-titled “Instructions for Christian Households” with the third one “Wives and Husbands.”  So in other words, this is direct from God to us marriage help.  The first thing we need to do is believe that God has our best interest in mind and that He doesn’t want to suppress women but free us.  (John 10:10 “….. I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”)

So on to that much-hated word; submit.  Submit, in these particular passages, the Greek word used is ποτάσσω (hypotassō) which means: "a voluntary attitude of giving in, cooperating, assuming responsibility, and carrying a burden".

As we as wives have an attitude of voluntarily giving in to the leading of our husbands, cooperating with them, we will be ultimately showing respect or reverence towards God.

Now you might be rolling your eyes while you are reading that paragraph, trying to imagine yourself in that role with your husband, but I am challenging you to try it.
You also might be saying, “Now wait a minute, I have to show respect to him even though he doesn’t deserve it?!”  YES, that’s what I’m saying, and I believe it’s what God’s word is saying too. 

But let me tell you, improving your marriage isn’t about one person changing how they treat one another.  It’s by both partners deciding to make a change. 

Remember Ephesians 5?  In the verse just before the one instructing wives to submit to our husbands, you will find this verse, verse 21 Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.  Our husbands are instructed to submit to us as well! (Thank you Lord!) This is exactly why I am blogging this in two parts, with part two focused on husbands.

The Bible concludes with this thought found in 1 Peter 3:5-6 For this is the way the holy women of the past…… submitted themselves to their own husbands, like Sarah, who obeyed Abraham and called him her lord. You are her daughters if you do what is right and do not give way to fear.

This passage isn’t speaking of fear of physical, emotional or mental abuse.  (If you are in a marriage that involves abuse, please get out and get help.  Here is a link to one place that can help

The type of fear that is spoken about is the fear that all of us women have had at one point in our marriage that our husband is going to suppress and control us.  That he is going to pen us in to a life where he calls all of the shots and we have no voice.  If you are married to a man who is a believer in Jesus, then you must trust God to speak to his heart.  We as wives aren’t so much as trusting in our husbands as we are truly trusting our lives to God.  God will be on our side as long as we love Him and follow His commands.  Romans 8:28 28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. John 14:15 15 “If you love me, keep my commands.”  Those are promises to us as believers.

So I challenge you to push the fear aside, submit to your husband in all things, and watch how your marriage will find peace.  You still have a voice, you still have an opinion and our husbands are NOT always right so let’s trust God. Let the Holy Spirit lead you in every decision, every argument.  Remember God is on your side when you keep His commands!

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