"That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed." Titus 2:4-5

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Respecting Our Husbands

"However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband."  Ephesians 5:33

It took me a lot of years to grasp the fact that this is a command given in scripture.  For so long I was sure that this portion of scripture must be based on contingencies.  In my head, there was an "IF" at the end of this verse.  Really--that's what I thought.  I hadn't fully studied the scriptures, and basically based what I believed on what is taught in this culture...although I didn't realize that was what I was doing.

"Let the wife see that she respects her husband, IF he is talking kindly, IF he is spending money wisely, IF he is being a perfect father, IF he is giving me plenty of attention, IF he is leading the family in devotions....etc, etc...." (the former April version of the verse)

I thought he had to earn my respect.  Doesn't he???


There are no contingencies on this verse.  At all.  Let the wife see that she respects her husband.  Period.  That's it...no ifs, ands, or buts.  Yes, there was a command to the husband in the same verse, right before the command to the wife, and it's not an easy one for him. But it stands alone.  It doesn't say "let the wife see that she respects her husband if he loves her as he loves himself", just like it doesn't say "the husband must love his wife as he loves himself if she respects him".  Both commands stand alone, and we are each expected to obey these commands, whether or not the other one is obeying theirs!  Is it easy?  NO.

I still struggle with this if I am not being purposeful in following the scripture's teachings in this area.  I automatically want to default to respecting him only if I feel he has earned it.  But if I am seeking the Lord constantly--and following Him in our marriage really does take doing this--through Him I am able to show my husband respect as God has commanded me.

I'm just now starting to get this, and I've been married almost 17 years.  I have wasted a lot of years doing things my way instead of God's.  I've wasted a lot of time not listening to my husband's wisdom. Every single time that I haven't listened to him and have done something the way that I thought best, it has come back to bite me.  I end up realizing years later that I should have listened, and then mourn the loss of the benefits that could have come from his wisdom and leadership.  If I can help just one young woman understand this concept sooner than I did, then this post was worth writing!

I am currently reading the book "Created to Be His Helpmeet"...oh my goodness....wonderful, wonderful book with absolutely profound truths in it.  EVERY wife should read it.  I'm going to be posting snippets of it in various posts because it is just too good not to share! I'm sure many of you have already read it, but review is always nice, right?

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  1. Thanks for the post and reminder. I have not always struggled with respecting my husband in our 21 years of marriage but it seems lately I have had more testing in this area. I've read created to be his helpmeet as well. It has some good thoughts but please remember that those "divisions" of men are just Michael and Debi Pearls personal insights. (My husband's words to me....after I got all into "figuring which 'man' He was in the Pearl's estimation.) Your children are precious. I love the smiling face of Adam John!

  2. Great post, friend! I struggled with this at one point in my life, and when God's truth was revealed to me...it changed the way our family worked entirely! Created to be His Help Meet was an eye opener for me too! I was so angry when I first read it...lol! WOW what a difference it has made in our home for me to respect my husband in every way! It actually relieved a lot of my burdens and stress!!! :D Love to you! Thanks for sharing! --S

  3. Great post, April! In some ways, wifely submission is the easiest thing for us to do. Men are created with wide shoulders-both physically, as well as spiritually, where we are narrow and fair.

    Our husbands bear a tremendous burden (and I don't mean in a bad way) as the person the "buck stops with" so to speak. When we realize this, and essentially give up the power grab, that can be very rewarding. However, it's also tough, because we are conditioned in our culture NOT TO DO SO! Additionally, men..my goodness..men are certainly not (by and large) being instructed in righteous leadership anymore, with our anti-men/feminist culture!

    So, both genders have a challenge. Ours, if we allow God to guide us, is rewarding for us..it's taken me much of my marriage to fully get where I am..and I have so far to go!

    I haven't read the book, but would love to! I love the wisdom of the Pearls. Always Scriptural!

  4. Hi! I'm a homeschooling, "quiverfull", Pearl-reading, wife and mom too! Ha! :) It was great to read your inspiring words today...what a blessing it is when we walk under the authority and within the loving leadership of our husbands! Ahh...peace! :)

    Have a great weekend!


  5. What a beautiful family you have!

    I have read Created to be His Helpmate and oh, what a wonderful book. I read my daughter's book and was so blessed as she had parts underlined and her own thoughts in the margins. She is a young mother of 4 and I'm thrilled she has this resource available to her.