In a recent blog, I told of my comic misadventures in my new marriage. Many of you enjoyed my story and commented that you were ready to talk more about submission within marriage and to God. Even in the church, women bristle at the word “submission.” I think we picture mindless, shackled women who kowtow to their abusive husbands. What God has tried to show me through these now-funny incidents, is that when I am not trusting my husband, I am not trusting God. I am going to repeat that lest it slip by anyone else (I want no other popped frogs on my conscience). If I am not trusting my husband, I am not trusting God—and there is nothing funny about that.
Without going into a big lesson about whether God really commands wives to submit to their husbands (hint- He really does), I want to take a moment to talk about what that submission looks like. In the Bible passage that we all love to hate (as we argue that if we want eggshell curtains and our husband wants cream colored curtains that we have to go with cream—and that just isn’t fair), Ephesians 5:22-33 commands wives to submit to their husbands. This passage also says a lot to husbands about the responsibilities that come with heading a family, but let’s stick with our part for now. “Submit.” It is ok; say it out loud. It won’t hurt you, go ahead—say it. Strong’s lexicon gives us the meaning behind the word “submit” in this passage: “to yield to one’s admonition or advice,” and is further described as a “voluntary attitude”
(Blue Letter Bible). God is asking me to change my attitude so that I will yield to my husband’s advice. Why is that so hard?
I think God knows it is not easy for anyone to submit to anyone else. How many times do our teenagers implore that they WANT to learn lessons the hard way and make their own mistakes? But as we mature, don’t we get tired of doing everything the hard way? Parent/child relationships teach a lot about obeying God and trusting God. For instance we learn that Father does not allow us to touch the hot stove not because he wishes to deny us the fantastic opportunity to experience third degree burns—he does it because he wants better for us. If I have learned that basic kind of trust from my parents, I believe that God wants me to mature that trust by submitting to my husband. Most of us instinctively trust our parents when we are children, but adults have been around the block a few times. We have taken our punches and been burned by others who did not have our best interest at heart. When I voluntarily place my trust in my husband (even though he may make mistakes and occasionally be wrong), I am growing in my trust in the Lord.
I think stronger relationships and faith is something that we all want four our marriages and for our walk with the Lord. Join me, once more for the conclusion of this blog series in which we will discuss the consequences of not submitting to our husbands, and thus God. Hint- it is more than messy clean-ups of cracked eggs, puddles from drenching rains, and popped frog gore in your garage. Until next time…