The Conclusion

Well, it’s been over a month since I started posting about submission. Like most things in my life, it gets harder right when I think I have it all figured out. You know, like potty training. Just when I start to think, “We’ve got this! We’re okay! Perseverance for Mommy, and self-control for Pretty One is totally attainable in 3 days!” someone goes and pees on the floor. But the process is just as important as the result. Sure, she will be potty trained. And one day, I will be lovingly submissive in absolutely everything, including my facial expressions. One day. But I can’t (and she can’t) fast forward through the million baby steps on the way. These little steps are needed to keep us from becoming prideful. To help us to be compassionate with others. And to realize, that we just can’t be perfect. And to feel the forgiveness and love from our Father. The process is as much a blessing as the result. Self control, patience and goodness do not just come overnight. So I’m getting there.

But the original question: Are submissive women as strong as domineering women?

My answer: No, they are stronger.

It makes me nervous to say that. Lori, a commenter on one of the earlier posts, had absolutely nooo qualms about saying so. I am much more afraid of offending someone. But hey, people who disagree have no issue with offending me, so here we go.

I am stronger, because it isn’t just me.

I’m not strong enough to control my hormones, my feelings, my emotions. I cry at commercials, when the kids say something sweet, songs on the radio (and lately, Adventures in Odyssey). I can’t help it. It’s who I am.

Sometimes, when I’m upset, I take it out on other things, or people. I can’t compartmentalize. If I am upset at home, I take it with me to the store. When someone would make me mad at work, I’d take it home with me.

I am soft. I’m a 2013 Pollyanna. I believe the best, and am always surprised by the worst. I always think people have good intentions, even when they don’t. I know that there’s evil in the world, and in other people, but I am always shocked at it. I get hurt easily.

And that’s just my character, my sensibilities. There’s also me as a physical person.

I can’t even get the lid off a jar of pickles. 

And yet, I am so strong. 

You see, to get to me, or for me to fail, something first has to be allowed by God. Nothing touches me that is not allowed by Him first, and for my ultimate good. Then, when trials and tribulations do come, I give them to my husband. He holds me up. Any issue with the children, finances, family, health, you name it. He shelters me from what he can, and supports me through what I have to do. He makes decisions for me, knowing I have a hard time saying no to people, or that I think too much, or worry about what people might say. As a matter of fact, he reads all my writing first, to make sure that I don’t make myself too vulnerable with people who might hurt me. He also protects the public from the stuff I say that might be too harsh, or come off the wrong way. Mostly, he protects me from myself.

This is how I know I’m strong: I know I’m weak. Yes, I’m strong enough to endure over 50 hours of hard labour with no interventions. But I can’t get over a friend that stopped talking to me without a reason why.

I know that I don’t always get it right. I know that I screw up.

And that’s okay.

I am completely free to be me.

A complete mess, yet prized. Sheltered, protected, and because of that I can love without holding back. I can cry, because my emotions and feelings are so important to the warmth in our home.

I am woman, see me SOAR.

Floating on the wings of eagles, protected by the Father. Covered by my husband.

There is so much strength in ultimate freedom.

As Unto the Lord

Okay. So we have talked submitting. But that doesn’t mean much without a comparison. See, we submit to the government, knowing if we don’t follow their laws we could go to jail or be penalized. We submit to our parents, or at least did at one time (or pretended to.) It doesn’t mean a lot to “submit” unless it’s given a value.

As unto the Lord.

Now, I submit to the Lord because He has given me every blessing. All good things come from Him. He created me, and my children. He has given me beauty for ashes. I have a beautiful home, my husband loves me. I have a great family. I live in an awesome country. And this is why I praise, and submit, to the Lord. Right?

Wrong.

I submit to Him, because HE IS GOD.

Not for what He’s done.

For Who He is.

The Creator of the world, who did it all in seven days. The Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. The Maker of Love. The One who knows all. There is so much I could say, and it has NOTHING to do with what He’s done for me. I pray, that if tomorrow I lose it all, I will still praise His name and submit to Him. Oh, I pray that so hard.

Now my husband.

He is not God. I don’t imagine your husband is either. He isn’t perfect. He makes mistakes. He has overcome lots himself, he will stumble and fall. He will hurt me. He will err in judgement.

But I must to submit to him, because of WHO HE IS.

Knowing that he will mess up, think of himself before me, make a rash decision, not think things through . . . I submit to him, knowing these promises:

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. Romans 8:28

Whoever obeys his command will come to no harm, and the wise heart will know the proper time and procedure. Ecclesiastes 8:5

So, what does it mean to submit, as unto the Lord? Well, how do we act towards our Lord?

-NEVER. Never. Never talk badly about him. Even, and especially, if it’s true. If you’re mad, and can’t get through it, get solid Christian help. That’s great. Vent to the Lord who created him. He’s the only one who can fix him anyways.

-If it’s not from your heart, it’s not true. Don’t pretend to agree with him. If you don’t, tell him in love but don’t be expecting your own way. If you don’t agree with his decision, don’t tell everyone but him. Pray for the peace of knowing that the situation will always comes out for God’s glory, if you honour Him in your obedience. For me, this is usually a “fake it till I make it” moment. I know it’s going to work out. But I want to fight, so bad. And then I regret it, and wish I would have just waited, just a day or two, to get my mouth to follow my heart. I’m getting there. Two steps forward, write about it, three steps back.

-It doesn’t matter if he believes the same as you. There is no description or qualifier here. It doesn’t say to submit to your Christian or perfect husband. Nope. It says the one you got. Obviously, it’s hard when your hubby doesn’t want you to go to church, or he wants you to do things that are not right. I know there are husbands who go against what God wants for you, or your marriage. That sucks. And that is not for some girl on a blog to speak to. That’s where the Holy Spirit and solid, God-fearing guidance come into play.

-Have a solid faith. If you have never allowed him to make decisions, or he isn’t capable (by history or character) of making good decisions, don’t give him something he’s going to fail at right out of the gate. Take small steps, allowing God to mature your faith, and allowing your husband to slowly take over leadership. Peter of the Bible did not walk on water the first time He met Jesus. As he came to know Him, witnessing His miracles and wonders, he took that leap. If you fully trust him, then it’s fine. If you’re afraid, let him and God earn your trust, with small steps. Pray for faith. He tells us that He will give what we ask for in faith.

And when you start giving these areas over to your husband, pray. With a desperate, pleading, and, dare I say, repentant heart. Many men cannot make good decisions because they have never been ALLOWED to. We, as women, need to own that. We need to ask the Holy Spirit to convict us where we need to be convicted. If we treated our husbands with the reverence and respect they deserve, just for being THEM, in all their imperfect glory, they would be able to rise up and be the men we so want them to be.

So what are the rewards? Why do this? Obviously, God tells us to. But what benefits are there for you, and your family? Stay tuned!

What did I say wrong? What was right? What is the hardest part of all this? I want to hear from you!

Press Submit to Enter

A month ago, when I was phoneless, I watched CTV Newsnet to remind me of life outside my spaghetti speckled walls. No, not wallpaper. Genuine spaghetti sauce. I’ll get to it. Anyways, they were discussing the entertainment news, and right after the highlights on the Beib saga, they mentioned a new autobiography by Gabrielle Reece, a pro beach volleyball player. I was only half listening at first, reading the scrolling news on the bottom. But then I heard the word “submissive,” and my ears perked right up. The pretty, blonde, blowhard of a news anchor was discussing Gabrielle’s status as a role model. “Here you have a beautiful, tall, powerful woman who talks in her book about being submissive to her husband. In this age of feminism and equal rights, this is not someone you want your young girls looking up to.” She kept talking, but the blood was rushing to my face so bad I couldn’t hear anything else. Now, I don’t know much about this Gabrielle lady, but she has at least one gold star in my book. She seems to have accomplished quite a bit, but the anchors or mouthpieces or whatever they are completely discounted everything she’s done, because of that one simple fact.

I have been through a lot. My teen years were a complete mess. I struggled with suicide, depression, drugs, drinking, partying, and I was even arrested (not for a big crime, but still. It was scary.) I absolutely hated myself, and the relationships I had certainly fed into  my despair. I liked anyone who would give me attention. I was afraid to be different. Now, I have a relationship with Jesus. I know who I am in Him, and that’s all that matters. All my bonds have been broken. I have total and utter freedom, and I feel like I have something to share with the world. I feel like I am a good example of redemption. I try and be a good mommy. I mess up, but I always want to do what’s right. I’ve sacrificed for my family. But according to the media my own children, and especially our daughters, cannot even look up to me as a role model, because I both put my husband before myself, and submit to him in leadership.

Don’t get me wrong, I mess up. Just two weeks ago, I started a fight, based on a legitimate issue I had. I won, I was right, but I felt awful. I knew I didn’t do it the right way, and I felt completely stupid knowing that I was researching and praying about this post. So, please know that I am quite aware of my own shortcomings. I have been praying about this for over a month. Please hear my heart. My heart as a woman and as a wife is all about submitting to my husband. Now, before you start freaking out, forget everything you’ve heard about submission in the past. And then double check every single thing I say against God’s word. People (admittedly, probably men) have really wrecked something that can be the difference between happiness and strife, peace and conflict, marriage and divorce.

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So what does the Bible say? These are some main ones:

Ephesians 5:21-29 22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord23 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.25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church.

Most of us (even the unchurched) are very familiar with that first verse! But there is so much more to it. Just as Christ loves his church, covers his church and sacrifices for his church, so our husbands are to do for us. Just as we are to submit, obey and respect our husbands, they are to love us, cherish us and take care of us. Now, that may go against the grain. I know that gender roles are a thing of the past. But just as I don’t expect him to breastfeed our babies, he’d better not expect me to “man up” when I’m hurting or upset. It’s not part of my makeup. I feel things much more deeply than he does. I need him to protect my feelings and my heart. I need to feel wanted, loved and safe.

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What if you don’t feel safe? What if your husband is abusive? What does the Bible say about that?

1 Peter 3:7 says “Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.”  There are two parts here I want to touch on. First, “heirs with you.” That denotes equality under God. Women are not second class citizens. We are equal in worth and in heritage. Second, “so that nothing will hinder your prayers.” That’s big. He’s saying here that if you aren’t considerate, and you don’t treat your wife with respect, your prayers will not be answered. As a Christian, and someone who believes that you must have a personal relationship with Jesus to be saved, this tells me that if you treat your wife badly, Jesus will not have a personal relationship with YOU. He won’t answer your prayers. He may not even listen to them, until you deal with that huge problem you have (and mercy, He will help you through it if you ask.) That’s huge. God does not condone wife beating. Anyone who has used this excuse in the past while beating their wives into submission is in a whole different ballgame. And they do not have God on their side. It is incredibly dangerous to enact injustice in the name of God. And man, does it make me mad. Anyone who has used the verse, “Wives must submit to their husband” in an evil, degrading or abusive way will be in big trouble. I think they will be in more trouble than those who beat or abuse their wives out of fun. Our God is a God of love and justice. He often speaks about the broken-hearted, the captive, and the defenseless. See what happens if you try to use His name and His Word for evil or to hurt someone else.

So, the next few posts will be about just that. Submitting to our husbands. And why submissive wives are just as strong as wives who do their own thing.

 

 

Believe me. I want to hear what you’re thinking. Comment on here, or facebook me. But either way, let’s chat.