I was listening to the radio the other day and they were talking about marriage. One caller said the key to happiness was, “Happy wife, happy life!”
I guess he was talking about how If mama ain’t happy… ain’t nobody happy. Which to me shows how the family unit is evolving. But I guess the real question we should ask ourselves as Christians is,”What are God’s instructions on marriage?”
Ephesians is a great place to start. Here is a verse most people kinda like to not talk about… I mean it just does not sound very politically correct these days.
Ephesians 5:22 (KJV)
22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.
Let me preface by saying that this may be the most widely abused verse in the Bible. Pulled out of context. Used by men to try and rule over women. Used by women to try and declare unfairness in the eyes of God. But if we would read the whole chapter it would become clearer in context.
And it does not say… hey lady submit to your boss. Or the guy down the street. It says…your husband.
Before we get in too much trouble let us see how that compares with verse 25. Everything in the Bible is to be taken in context. Why?? Because God wants you seeing the big picture…. not just one verse.
25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
Guys maybe you are asking… So what, I love my wife. No.. Read it again. Let it soak in. As a husband it is my duty to love my wife like Christ loved the church. So how much did Christ love the church??
He went to the cross and died for it. Not when it was worthy. Not when it acted right. Not for something the church had done… simply because He loved it. Christ set the tone, as husbands should for their wives.
And you think a woman submitting to her husband is a tall order! The Bible says I must love my wife so much that I should lay down my life for her.
No wonder God calls for submission from the wife. If not… then she would completely rule over him.
God does not just come out and say… Well mutually submit to each other as husband and wife. Because we have different roles and responsibilities. No, He says here are your individual instructions, now handle it. Ultimately because we should not base our actions on what our spouse is doing. You may have the most rotten husband or wife on the planet…
That does not change your job as a Christian in marriage. And boy that can be tough!!
I am not going say my marriage is all peaches and cream. Summer and I have had many trials along the way. I will take responsibility for most of those. And I am sure she struggles with submitting to me just like I struggle with laying down my selfish pride and sacrificing for her. But I will say I am blessed with a wife that never gives up. And I do believe Summer is open to becoming what God wants her to be. My only hope is that she sees that I do want to be the husband that she needs me to be. I know I am not there yet.
It is very obvious that the roles in marriages have become reversed as we pick and choose how we want to live and what we want to believe. To me the greatest enemy of marriage today is pride.
When you read what God tells you and think… well no, that doesn’t pertain to me. Or no I have a special situation. Or no I can’t do it that way… because.
I wonder how many married people truly sit down and make their minds up… we are going to live this way no matter what. Or do they just shrug it all off as some antiquated way of living?
But the truth is, It is the only recipe for success in our marriages as Christians.
And it would be a great tragedy if you made it this far reading this and your only thought was…if only my spouse would live like that!
No. Your only thought should be.. If only I truly lived it out… how much would my marriage change??
Because I can’t change her. I can only change me.