Note: I’m writing this post in response to some negative feedback I’ve recently received from some readers that advised me and stated that I did not clearly explain my reasoning for some of my posts. Also, that I might have mislead some to believe that women are to be used and abused by their ‘sin-less’ husbands and that my recent post ‘tear down’ women. This is far from my intention. If you’ve read any of my recent post, please forgive me if they might have came across in any of these ways. This posting is in response to them. It is also for those who have been struggling in this area as well.
I’ve been married approximately 13 years. We have four awesome kids. I’ve previously wrote the majority of my postings on natural living, hair, style, lifestyle, etc., until recently. I believe that the Holy Spirit impressed or compelled me to start writing more posts on my spiritual journey and walk being that this entire blog is devoted to the beauty of the whole or entire woman not just hair or natural appearances.
For the most part of my marriage, I tried to take control of my marriage by carrying it and the decisions on my back. As a result, my husband did not become passive. On the contrary, he became more aggressive. This created a spiritually ‘vilatile’ situation where my desire to control and ‘take’ authority was fuel that splashed on his fire of dominant aggression. The result would be fruitless instead of full of fruit. I was totally unaware of the gravity of what I was doing. I felt it was not a problem or issue and that he was the problem and needed to fix himself….immediately! Thankfully, at the earlier part of this year, I came across a couple of sites from a fellow sisters in the Lord, thepeacefulwife.com, ninaroesner.com, joleneengle.com where I began to see that I had been living in sin the whole time. My disrespect, rebellion, contention and spiritual strife had created a gulf of dissension in my marriage that was on the verge of destruction. Since then, the Lord, through His Holy Spirit has sent me on a journey to becoming a better, gentle and more peaceful wife. He’s changing me and totally changed my perspective on this issue. My marriage is changing. I’m changing and my husband is changing.
I write on this blog for women, single or married. Post such as this one, are directed to married women and those who one day hope to become married. I do not write for men. I do not try to teach or give wisdom to men on how to be better husbands. Marriage participants are ‘grown adult’s’ who make their own decisions and each have to give an account before the Lord for their decisions.There are countless amounts of blogs that are spirit-filled that assist in this area. A great one is the husband of The Peaceful Wife, respectedhusband.wordpress.com. My husband also has a blog that is not strictly devoted to husbands but to end-times events and prophecy in which he also has some awesome posts on biblical marriage and husbands.
I spent almost all of my marriage focusing on on how my husband can be a better man, husband and father and all he needed to do was to listen and do what I say and we would have a better life and marriage. I totally ignored my sinfulness by way of my pride, lack of respect for him and countless of sins of my heart. He always told me and voiced how my contentious, argumentative, brawling, critical and complaining spirit would wound and hurt him and how it affected his and I’s relationship.His concerns would go in one ear and out the other because I felt that there was nothing wrong with me. At least I did not curse him out. At least I did not throw plates that I oh so wanted to do at times. I was OK. I was not sinning. He must be confused. To me, I was OK and sinless in my duties as a wife and he was not and needed to change. I did know that I was unhappy most of the time. I was stressed, anxious and fearful. I did not have peace because of worrying about everything. These things did not make up the perfect marriage or the way God in intended for it to be.
We are on the road to a beautiful marriage the way God intended for it to be. I’m learning that I have security, esteem, peace, joy and blessing by focusing on my responsibility in my marriage as God requires in His word as being a daughter of Him, a wife and a mother.
“Won’t I be my husbands ‘doormat’ if I submit like that?”
I use to think like this. This is one of the may reasons why I did not do it. I refused to allow another human authority over me. I did not want to lose control over myself and my own destiny. I did not want to be abused and misused man. I feared that if I gave him that, he would misuse it and abuse it. I was not alone in this. Most woman today fear that if they start respecting and honoring their husbands in this fashion, they will lose their self identity, power and he will start walking all over them or be his ‘doormat’ to mistreat as he see’s fit.
God’s ways are NOT our way’s. His word contradicts the word of the world. His wisdom fights and wars against the wisdom of our society and culture. If you read within the bible, it directs us to do things that are so unconventionally and seemingly ignorant, drastic and insane.
The bible tells us to:
- Love our enemies, pray for them and do good to them
- Do good to others who mistreat us
- Return good to them who do evil toward us
- Bless them that curse us
- Forgive those who hurt us as many times as needed (70 times 70)
- Crucify to our wants, desires and feelings. Die to looking out for ourselves
- Be humble, meek and lowly-not prideful and full of ‘self-esteem’
- Serve and put the needs of others over our own needs (the least in the kingdom is the greatest servant)
- Be content and thankful in whatever situation we’re in (be it famine, homelessness, poverty, richness, etc.)
- Respect and honor all government rulers and leaders, even the wicked one’s
I’m beginning to see the pattern here. I understand why our society and the ‘world’ secularism do not accept the bibles view. I see how everything that God tell’s the wife to do is look at as ‘fanaticism, old fashioned, outdated, bigoted, chovenistic and crazy’ to our flesh. I know that many of you feel the exact same way I felt, “I have to tell him what to do and how to make decisions. I have to criticize him and question all of his decisions. If I don’t, he’ll lead us into destruction for sure. He’ll have our family ‘out there bad’. If I don’t, he’ll walk all over me and be a dictator and I won’t allow him or anyone to use and abuse me.”
Unfortunately, there are some husbands that are ‘overbearing, unjust, crooked, foolish and tyrannical’. But thankfully, that’s not most. If God created most men or husbands to be this way, He would be unjust and that He is not. To quote the peaceful wife on this issue, ” And, really, the ones who are abusive, cruel tyrants are probably that way whether their wives attempt to respect and submit to them or not. These are the men who demand respect and “submission” (total, unquestioning obedience is their definition) from their wives but ignore God’s commands for them to love their wives as Christ loves the church. ” They ignore their duty to love their wives as Christ loves the church. They do not respect or respond to God’s word neither do they honor it. They don’t submit themselves to Jesus Christ or His commands. In these situations, his wife’s respect could help him change or maybe not. 1 Peter 3:1-6 would be the solution for this situation possibly. An example would be Abigail in the 1 Samuel chapter 25 who was married to Nabal (his name means ‘fool’ in hebrew) who was a fool.
(Sidenote: If you are in a situation where you are being physically, mentally or emotionally abused, please seek Godly professional help. If there is drug addictions (crack, heroine, etc.) and mental issues, professional help from a Godly individual would be best. I am not by any means trained to provide counsel or advice in these area’s. If you are in any danger, please seek help ASAP!!! Please do not stay in a dangerous situation where you are in harm’s way. This post and previous post I’ve written on this issue is not for you and these circumstances. This post is for women who are subject to being like I was, controlling, disrespectful, dishonoring of their husbands. It is not for those who are in abusive relationships. My heart’s desire is not to tear down my sisters who are already wounded and torn down from their abusive husbands. I desire to build up, edify and encourage as the scripture dictates.)
Glory be to God, most husbands and men are not like fools. Most are good people who desire to do right. Most WILL respond to their wives consistent respect and honoring with love, tenderness and leadership. In Dr. Emerson Eggerich’s book series “Love and Respect”, he and his wife targets and reveals the needs of both spouses from a biblical perspective. Men were created to thrive off of their wife’s respect and sincere honor. They are made to respond positively by loving, nurturing, serving and protecting those who respect, reverence and honor them for being them.
Contrary to political correctness, once you learn that men and women are different and have different needs and learn how to speak your husbands individual language of love which is respect and honor, you’ll see that we as woman are powerful being what God created us to be. I understand most of us are probably being disrespectful unintentionally. Who would marry a man to treat him with disrespect. We must have a certain level of love for the husband that we marry. Enough to marry him right? We must have though enough of him to say “I do”. So I know must are like I was, unaware that they are living in disrespect and sin.
Thanks be to God for his mercy and grace! He is faithful to forgive us of anything. He loves us so much that He won’t leave us in the sinful situation. He shows us our short-coming and falls so that we can recognize that we are nothing without Him and for us to depend on His power and strength to grow into what He created us to be and to start walking in obedience to His will.
Once you start doing this….
- Your flesh’s power over you in this area will cease and it will stop destroying your husband and your marriage. You’ll no longer tear him down to pieces and create ‘death’ with your mouths words. Life and death is in the power of our tongues. They’re little members with enormous power.
- You’ll become anointed and empowered through God’s Holy Spirit to speak life and minister to your husband and your family. Your words will become a spring of well fueled wisdom and life. Healing will flow from your tongue, thus healing your husbands wounds and your marriage woes.
- You’ll have a new life of peace and joy that is ever-present!!
Most will go through the ‘quiet phase‘ along this journey. April from the peaceful wife’s blog has a great posting on this and the other phases that wives go through. This is where you realize what you’ve been creating with your words so you begin catching them before you speak them. You start noticing if what you’re about to say if blessing or not and you muzzle your mouth before saying it. You begin learning what is disrespectful with your speech and what is not. You stop arguing, criticizing, shaming him, embarassing him in front of other people, disrespecting him, ordering him around. You live quietly for a while, while learning what is right or not to say so that you won’t sin with your mouth. This phrase is probably frustrating for some and it is definitely frustrating for me but I learned and am learning a lot from it and my journey overall.
Next, you’ll start figuring out what is wholesome, pure and lovely to speak. You’ll begin to recognize and add words to your vocabulary that is praise worthy, uplifting, life-giving, respectful, courteous and edifying. It’s hard at first I must admit. It’s a total rebooting of our fleshly nature. It doesn’t happen overnight for most. Its a renewing of the mind that only comes through throwing off all we think and feel from our old selves and putting on the mind of Christ and allow Him to change and clean our hearts, soul, emotions, will and feelings.
After recognizing, you’ll start to ‘grab’ or take those negative thoughts captive. You’ll rebuke them because you’ll see that they are from Lucifer the devil himself. You’ll start thinking positive, God-filled thoughts about your husband. You’ll start focusing your attention on his gifts, talents and all of the good things that you respect and admire about him. The amount of words you speak daily will probably decrease if you’re doing this. The bible says ‘be quick to listen and slow to speak’ in James 1:19 and living a life where you’re bringing your thoughts captive prior to speaking them will cut most of your words in half. Like April was and so many other woman dealing with this issue, I use to say every word that came to mind, negative or positive.
I would gladly voice all of my concerns, worries, fears, anxieties, insecurities, you name it, on my husband as if to vomit my emotional filth all over him. Of course God’s spirit was not in control at these times. Where the spirit of the Lord there is liberty. He is a God of peace and order. Those thoughts were not peaceful thoughts. Once I allowed Him to come in and lead me, he allows me to be at peace irregardless of situations. I’m learning how to talk to my husband about what I’m feeling, thoughts and concerns but making sure that they are wholesome, spirit-filled words, not whatever fear the devil just placed in my mind.
Most husbands desire to please their wives. Who want’s to be married to an unhappy wife and know that they are the cause? God placed in husbands the desire to take care of their wives and to nurture her. They will rush to your aide if your hurting. On the other hand, when a man does not filled respected, honored or wanted, he shuts down his emotion and builds up walls in order to protect himself from further pain. Disrespect hurts men just like lack of love hurts us women. God desires men to love their wives like Christ loves the church and for women to respect, submit and honor their husbands as unto the Lord. Its a reciprocal relationship.
“I can’t lose doing what God’s word say”
Once I started to respect my husband and to honor him sincerely, he began to open up more to me and the walls began to fall down, walls that I created after year’s of disrespect. I never felt like he really cared about my feelings and would often tell me so. I realized that it was because of the walls he built up. He could not trust me with his feelings because I would hurt him with my words so he built walls thus I reaped what I had sewn. Now, those walls are beginning to fall and I’m so excited about what God is doing in my marriage!! My husband and I are growing closer and closer each day. This is all because of my recognizing that I was sinning and going in the other direction away from it. The more and more I show respect towards my husband, the more he showcase his caring about me and my feelings because he’s respecting me more. He values me and my insights more.
“I gained more power!!”
I’m powerful because I obey God’s commands. Submission is not a weakness is my source of power. In it, I have joy, ,peace, happiness, contentment and more. You can’t go wrong when you obey the Lord. He gives favor and a special blessing to those who obey His commands. He empowers us to keep growing closer to Him.I use to think this ‘stuff’ don’t really work. Now I AM A BELIEVER!!
Submitting is my placing my whole trust in the Lord to lead me through my husbands leadership and authority. I depend on the Lord to give my husband wisdom and guidance. I no longer try to compete or contend with him leadership or his decisions. I no longer have a ‘but’ every time I don’t get what I wan’t from him. It allows my husband to entreat me with love, tenderness, mercy, gentleness and affection. It gives him boldness for me and our marriage. He opens up his heart to me and for me. It builds more intimacy between us.
You can’t be submitting to get you’re husband to change who he is. You’re sole purpose MUST be because God’s word commands you to live a life of respect towards your husband. You’re purpose must be to bless your husband not to get him to change, become who you want or think he should be or to ‘control’ him. If you’re doing it as a means of manipulation or to control him, God is not leading you’re efforts. Our motives are very important. The Lord looks at the heart of an individual and their motives for obeying him. I’m learning that I can’t use submission as a means of control or to get my husband to ‘dwarf’ into the next TV prince charming but as my purpose and goal is to honor Christ and bring glory to Him by blessing my husband and honoring his God-appointed leadership in our family.
I can’t say that I’ve ‘arrived’. I’m still learning each step that I go but I must say that I’m seeing progress in my walk with Christ because of my repentance in this area. I’m determined to keep learning all I can and studying all I can about this subject so that I can be a woman that my husband can trust his heart with and whose children will rise up and call her blessed (proverbs 31)