As a wife, you are a helper, a doer, a lover, a friend. Your identity spans from daughter,
sister, woman, or friend depending on the viewer at the moment. Each of the roles that makes up the composition of our being is equally important to our identity, but some may take precedence over others according to lifestyle or personality.
Personally, I am a slightly sarcastic women who is not shy to share her thoughts. I pride myself in my ability to get things taken care of. As I prepared for the marriage I would have with my husband, I looked forward to sharing all aspects of life with my best friend. He would be my other half in each decision, the one I would sit across from at each meal, and the man I would listen to as his compliment to ensure our happy life together. What I managed to skip over in my wonderful dreams of our life, even after the counseling from our pastoral mentors, was that there would be instances when the submissive, patient wife would be needed that she did not want to cooperate. It is easy to look forward to being the perfect complement to your husband when there is no quarrel. But the wife who balances her husband must understand that the urge to spit out an opinion may be the very thing that tears the man you love down.
The ability to recognize the need to be submissive when I was sure my opinions would fix the issue, and my husband would do well to listen to me, was something I had to work hard at initially. It is not as if I did not desire to be a wife that submits to build up her husband-I simply had to recognize my inability to naturally submit when my opinion conflicts. The need to submit remains, even if our thoughts are screaming at us to respond differently. God calls us to overcome human impulse and nature to be His good servants. We are to understand that our nature to solve the issues quickly and swiftly may not be the help that our husbands require. This includes overcoming our desire to prove we are right (even if we know we are) in order to respect and lift up our husbands. As the helper of our husbands, we are to be there to assist them in thriving and growing into the men God would guide them to be. Knowing that he can count on you to submit when he makes a decision without making a fuss, or throwing out sarcastic comments about how long the decision may have taken, provides your husband with a solid support he can count on.
Already I can sense the disdain these truths will receive, and have received for years. Women of today’s world are strong and independent, capable of equality on all platforms. I fully agree and do not condone inequality simply due to my gender. What I am discussing is the strength and ability to look past my need to be an “independent woman” and realize what fundamental need my husband has. Deep down at the core of his being, he is made to need my support and I am made to help him. No, it is not easy. But we learned to function as a team in which he asks for my opinion and input. In this way, he acknowledges that I may have better or different thoughts, and I can share without tearing him down.
We as women do not realize the power we hold to destroy the hearts and morale of our husbands with too-often delivered cutting comments. Do you believe you should not have to hold your tongue if you have something to say? That is fine, but I would challenge you to consult with God as you find yourself in a developing relationship to see the ways that He would use you to grow your husband. Our worldly outrage at the mention of holding our thoughts while a man takes charge puts on display the lack of understanding of God’s plan for marriage. Don’t dismiss the idea as old school, sexist, or demeaning until you have found yourself in a marriage relationship that is centered on God and grounded in the principles He has given.
Honestly, when a marriage is functioning with a wife who helps her husband in the areas in which he needs, and the man supports and loves the woman for the strong being she is, there is no more romantic picture. God is infinite, all-knowing, powerful. He created this model of marriage purposefully, and the purpose was not to make life less enjoyable or difficult as the world often seems to make it out to be. Rather, He gave us this model to achieve relationships He could count on as examples of His love, and solid foundations to grow His people through our families. The whole point is to achieve the perfect balance in His image through a husband and wife.
I would challenge the wife to reevaluate herself in accordance to the vows she promised on her wedding day. Have you been living up to the perfect image your husband saw you to be on your wedding day? My husband and I have placed our vows in our bedroom as a reminder of the promises we made to each other and to God to uphold. It is a great reminder of what we should strive to be. I continue to tease and test him with my words, remaining feisty as I was before we married. What has changed is the transition into support when he needs help or a decision to be made-we become a team rather than 2 minds. This is the power of the Christian wife.