Ephesians 5:33b: And the wife should respect her husband.
Respect is his primary need, his deepest desire.

I Put My Followers First

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Wives, Submit

I have been experiencing a long season of introspection and communing with God.  It is time to return and report. 

I have been challenged to submit.   Not only have I been challenged to submit to the Lord, I have been challenged to submit to my husband.

Ephesians 5:22-24 (King James Version)

 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.

 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.

 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.

Just how far, do you suppose, does He expect the wife to go on with this?  

A couple of months ago my husband was whining expressing his desire for work.  He feels worthless unless he is working: learning new things and/or performing a service for others. 

It always impresses me that he is not concerned about the "almighty dollar".   He simply wants to be growing and serving.  I hear that it is a trait shared by many men. 

One evening, my husband was whining talking to a friend at church about his need for a job that would give him more hours.  An opportunity to take a job as a couple, nearly 2,000 miles away, was suggested.   

Without the slightest hesitation I said, "YES!" 

When solicited, my husband said, "I'm married to her.  I go where she goes."

Much has happened since then.  After our hasty responses, we returned to our home and we both sought the Lord's guidance (repeatedly and often) in earnest private prayer. 

My husband went to the Lord with all of his fears and returned multiple times with the same answer. 

"You need to move in May."

I went to the Lord with all of my anticipation and returned multiple times with the same answer.

"Organize yourselves.  Prepare every needful thing."

So a date has been set and preparations are underway.   I am still unemployed.  My husband is still extremely under-employed (3 hours per week at Target). 

We will need approximately $3,000 to make the move.

I have set about reducing the size of our household and making some money by selling our excess on eBay and Amazon.  When I look at the total sum value of the items I am selling, the goal will not be met. 

But, I have faith in the Lord.  He did not tell me to make $3,000.  He told me to organize and prepare.  Each day I fight back the demons that taunt and tease me about the futility of my efforts.

My husband has faith in the Lord.  Fifteen years of coping with severely diminished short-term memory (post-stroke) has taught my husband one overarching fact.  Life is simplified by constancy and crazy-chaotic in change.   Change frightens him.  Each day he fights back the demons that taunt and torment him with fear of change and facing the unknown.

Two months later, the job is tentative.  A long shot, actually.

The move is definite.

When our friends ask us why are we moving we could logically explain the move. 

Our rent, alone, will be $600 less than what we pay now.  The overall cost of living is greatly reduced.  My unemployment checks will follow me there.  My husband's disability checks will follow him there.  Even if we do not have a job or cannot find a job, this income will cover our expenses.  There are jobs there for which we are skilled and few competitors within the tiny community.  In our post-stroke conditions, the slower pace will be a welcome change.   I will be closer to family including my grandchildren.

There are many logical reasons to move to Small Town, Mid-America.   

But, to be honest, none of them are The Reason.

When my husband prays, God answers.  It would be foolish to ignore the instruction provided.    

How many wives rely on, count on, or lean on their husband for spiritual leadership? 

I'm suggesting that we all do, to some degree or another.   I also suggest that we can always improve our behavior in that regard. 

It is important to remember that it is not up to our husbands to prove their selves in the leadership role.

It is a position given to husbands by God. 

God did not ask that they prove themselves worthy before He appointed them to it.  It is up to us, as wives, to honor and sustain them in that position.

 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.


Kelly said...

I feel so, so badly for you. Your life is completely devoted to following your husband's whims blindly. I hope one day you see the value in yourself as a human being instead of only as a worthless drone doing whatever your husband tells you to.

Anonymous said...

I have to admit I thought the same as Kelly. I love my husband immensely, but I have rights and deserve equality and my husband encourages me to be myself and loves me for it. He doesn't always agree with me but that is what makes our relationship what it is; strong and eternal with love. There is a name for how you feel, it is called co-dependency and psychologically speaking it is very concerning and unhealthy. I hope the best for you and your self esteem.

Sharon Cohen said...

Sorry Kelly - I think you miss the point here. I am a Christian wife, married to a man of deep spirituality. To call an obedient Christian wife a "worthless drone" is an insult to God - not to me.

I do not do "whatever" my husband tells me. I try do "whatever" God tells me and I recognize that sometimes God's direction comes through my husband. I am blessed to know that my husband does not speak for himself in these matters.

The amusing thing about your comment is seen by the people who know me. To know me is to know that the most inappropriate label for me is "subservient" or "blind follower".

Thanks for sharing, Kelly. I hope that your aversion for my perspective will not cause you to close your mind and your heart to the word of God for you.


Sharon Cohen said...

Dear Anonymous -

Thank you, thank you for calling attention to my co-dependency. I do not see it as a character flaw. I see it as a character trait the Lord has requested that I develop.

"Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." (Proverbs 3:5-6)

I have searched the scriptures for exceptions to that rule and find none. Rather, I find story after story of wives who trust in God and in their husbands.

I trust that God knows what He is asking when He asks me to submit to Him and to submit to my husband.

I am grateful for the knowledge, peace and wisdom that come to me when I submit to the ways of God. It magnifies my soul and enlarges my self-esteem.


Kimberly - NJ said...

We just recently attended a Love & Respect conference and it changed our lives!! Respecting your husband is foriegn to women as the world makes it a sexist thing but it is a biblical thing. Thank you for this site. You grasped the truth - run with it!!! God will greatly bless you for it!

Can I get an Amen?