Judgement and submission – two words seen as taboo in many circles today. As a Christian woman I feel that I am often judged on my independence, lack of submission, overall personality, lack of perfection in homemaking, or anything else that a woman is made out to be. Being a woman in Christ is an incredible gift; I have a consistently encompassing love that is constant and true, that protects my emotions and state of mind. I have too many thoughts in my head at any moment to be concerned that no one cares how crazy my thoughts are or that no one is supporting me in my endeavors. If my spouse does not show me the affection I wish for before they leave for work and I am left feeling unloved, what kind of day would I have? God promises us that we are never alone and He loves us with an unfailing love. In the midst of a difficult day it can be nearly impossible to think about, but God provides us with all of the emotional and mental support that we could possibly need. To expect that much support from another human (your spouse or family) is quite ridiculous when you think about it. We are not capable of providing all of the needs and support our own family requires without God’s grace. Why should anyone else be able to be that for us?
As a wife, I am created to be a helper to my husband, and he is made to be my strong support. Most of the world would read this as the woman being the meager secretary to the dominating man. I see this as guarantee from God that He will lead my husband to be the other half of my soul and will correct my husband if he goes astray from this charge. In today’s society we get caught up in the wording and cringe at words such as submission. But in God’s perfect vision for us, submission and leadership work as a check and balance system for the household. It guarantees a love and respect for both parties, and allows Him to work in our lives through each part. Think about it, I am a woman with complex emotions and thoughts. I may not hesitate to remind my husband how many things I have on my plate and the insane amount of things I am thinking about in a day. Why would God make me the person who is meant to be the leader over the household when He knows I will have a tendency to hold so much on my shoulders as a woman? God does not create us to fail. He has set us up with all of the forethought of an infinite God to be as perfect as we can be.
I am a strong person, a leader in most settings, and bossy at the best of times. But at home, I don’t need to be anymore than a helper and lover to make my household and marriage work. I can hold the weight of the rest of the world on my shoulders with my husband supporting me at my side.
When submission seems like a difficult task, we need to remember that the husband who may be difficult in our eyes now is the perfect balance to an issue we are having at other times. In the same way we are not always the perfect picture of support and help when our husbands need us, but when they are being pleasant we have no problem jumping on board to be the helper we were meant to be. The issues come when we lose focus of the real important things in real roles, allowing the enemy to direct our thoughts in a different path. If the snake could convince Eve through a single piece of fruit to go against the wishes of God that lead to such dire consequences, how are we to think we are any better when we go against the model we are to meet for our husbands. Today, we have demonized the concept and word that were never meant to do more than provide a divinely created balance over our lives.
I do feel the need to preface this with the statement that submission does not
condone abuse, emotional or physical, or dangerous situations. Our God would never charge us to leave ourselves or our families in a situation in which our lives are endangered. What we must be conscious of is that our roles do still exist in difficult situations. We tend to justify running or leaving when the situation in which God is calling us to be the helper, or our husbands to be the stronghold, lies in the middle of our biggest storm. Discernment between an abusive situation and a stormy outlook in the midst of a non-abusive argument is necessary if we are looking to follow God’s word.
I pray that I never find myself in a situation that drives me to question my husband. I know personally of couples whom have gone through infidelity and other difficult situations, but have come through stronger on the other side with more love than ever before for each other. We can all judge from the outside, but God’s grace for us does apply to our own marriages. It is a grey area that is difficult to understand until we are in the midst of our own storms.
Be strong in God’s calling. Understand what you are up against. Often times what seems like our own frustration in our lives or jobs is our minds being attacked by the enemy. When we have our eyes set on God situations look entirely different. What would’ve happened if Jesus had listened to Satan in the desert when he was challenged? Would we have the same salvation today? Being strong in the Lord when we are in the middle of our storm is important. Even more so, we must understand that our limitations as humans and our continual lack of faith makes the life God is orchestrating more complicated than He intends for it to be, just as the Israelites continually did in the Old Testament. Step back and look at your actual reactions during the day. When is it your own fault that things go poorly? When is it your own fault that you’ve argued with your spouse for no good reason? Our awareness of the grace God extends to us daily will only encourage us to find the same sort of grace to cover those in our lives. As this point, we begin walking in a way that models our Father.