I’ve been talking about sex on a predominantly Christian blog this past week. Yes, if you haven’t been reading, married Christians do have and enjoy sex.
I was just rereading Sex Ed for the Saints and was pondering 1 Corinthians 7:4 where Paul talks about the wife not having authority over her own body, but the husband, and the husband not having authority over his own body, but the wife. This reminds me of another scripture that is UNcomfortable for some.
According to Merriam-Webster, submit means to yield oneself to the authority or will of another.
In our society we don’t value submissive people. We value authoritative people…take charge people…people who know what they want and aren’t afraid to go after it…we want a leader not a servant.
Add in to that mix someone like me. I’m a woman. I’m competitive. I live for a challenge. Tell me I can’t do something, and I’ll prove you wrong. Tell me I can’t do something just because I’m a woman and I’ll definitely prove you wrong! Even if I hurt myself doing it.
By most people’s definition, I am authoritative. I am a leader. I am a go-getter. I won’t lie, there are days I rue the fact I’m female.
How does this picture of me fit in with the instruction found for wives in Ephesians? How can I, a strong-willed woman, accept the fact that scripture instructs me to submit to my husband?
I mean, does it really mean I have to let him have the final say? Does he really have the right to tell me what to do?
I struggled with this for many years. Fortunately, unfortunately actually but I’ll cover that another day, I married a man who isn’t very authoritative. So, my struggle with this scripture didn’t cause conflict in our relationship. I just struggled with the idea that God wanted me to give up power over myself to my spouse.
Let’s look at this a different way though.
I am a Christian. God invited me into that relationship through the leading of the Holy Spirit. He made the relationship possible through the blood and resurrection of His son, Jesus Christ.
God created the heavens and the earth. He created me. He could have forced me to worship Him. He could have made me serve Him. In all honesty, I was created for that purpose.
However, instead of forcing me into a relationship I may or may not want, He gave me freewill and allowed me to choose. He issued an invitation, and it was my decision to accept or not.
I did not have to marry my husband. The saying goes there’s plenty of fish in sea. I chose to marry Him.
Why would I choose to marry someone that I didn’t trust? Why would I choose to marry someone that I wouldn’t be willing to listen to their opinion and accept their position on the topic?
Just like God didn’t force me to become a Christian and follow Him, my husband didn’t force me to marry him. I chose both of them. Therefore I shouldn’t have any problem at all following where they lead.
Notice that this verse says wives should submit to their own husbands. I am not supposed to submit to all men in general. This scripture does NOT indicate that women are inferior to men. It does not place men in an elevated position and women in a demeaning position. I, as the wife of my husband, should submit to him as I would to the Lord. Not because my husband is God, but because it is a reflection of my submission to God.
There is actually freedom in submission.
I wouldn’t have made that statement in my youth, but now I’m a tad bit wiser. By submitting to my husband, I find freedom from decisions that I probably shouldn’t have ever been making to start with. I don’t have to worry about him finding out what I did or didn’t do.
Sometimes it’s nice just to be a follower…I don’t always have to be the leader!
Here are some websites I found about submission in marriages:
A Husband’s Take on Leading a Submissive Wife
Girls Gone Wise: 7 Misconceptions About Submission
Why I Choose to be a Submissive Wife