“I… (insert name here)… Member in good standing of the He-Man Woman Haters Club… Do solemnly swear to be a he-man and hate CRAZY women and not play with them or talk to them unless I have to. And especially: never fall in love, and if I do may I die slowly and painfully and suffer for hours – or until I scream bloody murder.” ©The Little Rascals, 1994
The price of submission is sacrifice. Your sacrifice.
Those of you in the church and even out of it, how often do you hear: ‘Women are to submit to their husbands.’ Do you even know what comes along with that? HUSBANDS LOVE YOUR WIVES. Right? Like, when do we focus on that part of it? There is hardly any reasonable way that we can approach the piece of submission if the piece of sacrificial love is not first addressed.
So stop telling her she must be submissive without teaching her first about how to be loved.
Also. We need to recognize that we are coming from a culture that has made the submissive wife the most pivotal piece in this symbiosis; and one in which we haven’t thoroughly approached the responsibility of the husband. Think about it in terms of history here in America. The right for women to vote is less than a hundred years old. We have seen a massive exodus from marriage, mothering as a full time occupation, and most of all from the traditional view of roles within a familial unit. Does it not seem as though it is fairly reflective of an imbalanced system?
Know this: I am no women’s rights advocate, but I’m also seriously not into being categorized as a stereotypical housewife either.
Let me put it this way. Men. Women want to serve. But heed this: SHE WILL ONLY DO SO IN A LOVING ENVIRONMENT.
When the focus lies on the submissive wife, (as it has for far too long in the Christian church), we make assumptions about the husband’s gentle, pure love for his wife. Now, if he has lived in a society where the man rules and the message is heavy-handed toward a female’s responsibility to submission do you think he is honestly going to understand what sacrificial love looks like, feels like, and accomplishes? I’m leaning toward no. Not in the truest sense, anyway.
Where does that leave us? Let me shout my response because talking quietly doesn’t seem to be getting the point across: MEN IN THE CHURCH, YOU NEED TO STEP IT THE EFF UP. I cannot be any clearer. Learn to seek the wisdom of Christ as a picture of sacrificial love, and teach it to your sons. Christ does not require his church to be submissive to the law before He loves, but by grace in the midst of turmoil when she was least deserving…He sacrifices. In the same way understand fully that being firm, and being a leader has NOTHING to do with control, shame, or dominance and everything to do with gentle service, strong character, and integrity.
Be gentle, not because she is weak. But because she is strong and in every way will be the one to lift you up.
Look, we’ve all got to deal with our own gigantic pile of crap. Just be aware: you being broken does not give you permission to be a royal PITA. You are still bound by your covenant to Christ first and foremost.
Man up. Love your wife as Christ exemplifies in His love of the church and I promise you a good woman will learn to submit to your kindness because she too, wants to be pleasing to our God.