You don’t have to look very far to find people angry these days, especially women. Maybe I just notice that because I am a woman. There have been times in my life where I have been an angry woman, seemingly to lash out at all that I saw as injustice. This morning during my Bible study, I was reminded how I ended yesterday’s post.
To “continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling”, we must give all that we have and all that we are to the Lord for His use and His purposes. When we walk along the path He lights for us, trusting in Him fully and completely, we are allowing Him to work in us for His glory!
I reread from Kay Smith: “When we obey God, we shine brightly in this dark world and we reflect Him. Our lives look different, because we’re not living to please ourselves, but to please the Lord. And this is so important if we want to reach the lost. If our lives do not look different to the world, they have no reason to reach out for God.” Later she also reminds us, “Obedience to God’s Word is one way we can acknowledge His lordship in our lives. When we obey, we are saying that He knows better than we do about how we should live.”
I thought back to a hymn we sang in church as a child, “Trust and Obey”. The fourth verse and chorus say, “But we never can prove the delights of His love, Until all on the altar we lay; For the favor He shows, and the joy He bestows, are for them who will trust and obey. Trust and obey, for there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.”
Kay also said, “If you find something in Scripture that you feel rebellious against, you need to realize that you are rebelling against God Himself.” As she takes us to the next Scripture, I see she was preparing me for what I would find there. “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.” (Eph. 5:22-24)
We have already said that the Lord knows better than we do as to how we should live, and that the only way to be happy (have joy) in Christ is to trust and obey. Why did God set up marriage this way? The original sin happened because Eve was deceived and Adam didn’t protect her from Satan’s deception. A consequence from this for them both was that husbands would rule over their wives, giving husbands added responsibility for protecting their wives (Gen. 3:16). In Paul’s letter to Timothy, he says: “And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression.” (1 Tim. 2:12-14)
I’m not a quiet woman without opinions. That’s not how God created me to be at all. But I do try at the end of a discussion to submit to my husband because I respect and honor him. Is it easy? No, because many times I believe I know best. Am I being deceived when I believe that? Probably. Scripture tells us “For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands, as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror.” (1 Peter 3:5-6)
When we submit to our husbands, we are submitting to Christ, and trusting that the Lord knows best how our marriages should work for His glory. When we fully trust the Lord, we are obedient to His Word, even those we don’t like. The Bible isn’t Walmart, we don’t get to pick and choose.
We need to keep in mind God’s purpose for marriage–which isn’t a Cinderella story where we live happily ever after. A marriage is an opportunity for us to reflect God’s work in the world. God designed marriage as a symbol of Christ’s love for the church–a symbol to the world of Christ’s redemption. With that in mind, let’s look at our Scripture again: “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.” (Eph. 5:22-24)
And even further, as older women we are to teach younger women what God’s Word says about our role. “the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things—that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the Word of God may not be blasphemed.” (Titus 2:3-5)
All of these angry women who are quick to blame men for how they feel about themselves need our prayers. They are obviously not in the Word and taking it to heart. But our own marriages are an opportunity to reflect God’s love to the world. We need to take the time in prayer to ask God to show us if there is any area in which we are not submitting to our husbands as to Christ. Be an example today of God’s light–the dark world and dark hearts need the light more than they realize!