Friday, November 26, 2010

Not The 'S' Word!

Dare I say it?...

Do you really want to hear it?...


How our society loathes that word!  Its true!  When women (and a lot of men) hear that word in reference to marriage they recoil in horror, words and images are immediately conjured: doormat, subjugated, downtrodden, abused, weak-willed...etc...I know this because I used to be one of them! 

 But wait a minute, what does the Bible say about submission?

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. 
- Ephesians 5:22-24

Even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands. 
- 1 Peter 3:4-5

It must be mentioned however, (as there are those who totally misunderstand the word) that submission does not mean I am inferior to my husband.  It is not a justification for allowing marital abuse to occur.  It is not because my husband forcefully demands it of me.  It does not mean that I am not allowed to contribute my opinions in the matters of our lives. Submission is not a matter of appearance.

As our family is guided by what we read in the Bible; submission to us means that I (as a wife) should come under the God ordained headship of my own husband.  I must encourage my husband to take his biblical role as leader of our family and home.  I must not immasculate him.  Submission is a heart issue, meaning that my heart must be in submission not merely just an superficial act!  I should encourage and help him in his endeavours.  I should support him in the discipline of our children.  I should do him good all the days of my life.  I should act lovingly toward him and not 'punish' his mistakes with coldness.  I must not celebrate my submission simply because he made the decision I wanted him to make (don't we all make this mistake at times!)

In my own childhood I think it would be safe to say, that my parents did not often demonstrate an example of a biblical marriage to me (my parents are not Christians) although they are very much in love and are still married after 30 years of marriage.  But very often the marital model we observe as children goes a long way in determining how we ourselves will act with our own spouse in the future.

When my husband and I firstly married almost five years ago...I hated the word submission! I refused to promise to obey him in our wedding vows and I often felt almost compelled to rebel against him...Thankfully he married me anyway!

I can appreciate that this post coming from a young lady who has only been married for five years may be rather laughable, but I hope that you will hear me out nonetheless, as I feel this issue pressing on me so much at present.  I see that submission of our husbands has become a tabboo.  Even men do not expect it from their wives; lest any person think that the husband is 'living in the dark ages'!  It has become the social norm to disobey, immasculate and rebel against our husbands! 

Through Christs grace I have made giant leaps since becoming a Christian, in the way of submission in my marriage; it has not been easy!...and we now have a much happier, healthier and more stable relationship because of that.

There are still days that my submission 'hits the deck' and shatters into a million pieces!  But I pick it up tape it back together and try again.  My husband knows he did not marry a perfect woman and he himself is not perfect...but together we are working at it and are reaping the blessings.

I can now see (as a reformed feminist!) that when we, as women follow the examples set out for us in Gods Holy Word that we become much happier and contented!  It really is that simple!  Our Heavenly Father loves us so much, that he gave us our instructions for life in written form!  All we have to do is obey Him and we will be blessed!


Elizabeth said...

Well written article. Great job Sarah! A good reminder for all of us.

Stacie, A Firefighter's Wife said...

You need a leader in a marriage. You cannot have two heads. I tried it, it doesn't work. When I first started reading my Bible and came across the "s" word, I was confused and scared. I didn't know what to do with it. I started studying it and asking my godly mentors about how it worked. It is no longer the scary word it used to be. Sometimes submitting is ducking so that God can get your hubby's attention. It is simply getting out of the way. I do believe in having a voice in the marriage. It is OK to give your opinion, sometimes more than once in a respectful way. I think of a lawyer laying out his case before the judge. But the final decision must rest with him.

Cheesemakin' Mamma said...

Ditto, from another reformed feminist!

Chelle said...

Love your post. You are right most women don't like that word. when my husband pastored I try to teach the women about it. Boy they didn't like it. I am a firm believer it makes your marriage better if you are. I was never taught it. I learned most of it after I was married. God has really helped me.