I don’t want to brag but my bible study group and I basically solved all marriage problems this week. I have been thinking about our discussion ever since then and decided that it was my duty to share our discovery with everyone.
If you ever needed confirmation that God has a sense of humor, here is your proof: I am leading a bible study on submission. (When you stop laughing at how funny that is, please continue reading.) But God, in his infinite wisdom, has me leading a group of women through a book called “Touching Godliness” by K.P Yohannan. It is not just on submission in marriage, it is on submission to God Himself. Once we have yielded to God, submission to His delegated authorities flows from there. I have fully documented the fact that God had to change my heart where submission was concerned because in my book that word was about the worst cuss word I could think of. And God, to really be sure I understand it, has me leading other women though this book.
So in some amazing organic way, the discussion from last week landed on how hard submission is in marriage, shocking I know! How when husbands let you down, or drop the ball, we immediately want to control the situation. We talked about how God is asking us to submit to our husbands not because they are more qualified to lead than we are, but because God ordained that they lead. I’m guessing it has something to do with growing us to be more Christ-like because I find women will naturally lead and men will naturally not lead, and God is in the business of having us fight against our natural bent. (See Genesis 3) Anyway a comment was made about how the more we nag, boss and order our guys around the more they will shrink back and let us take control. Conversely, the more we cheer them on the more they will want to step up and lead. Then out of no where, by friend says they best line I have ever heard that sums up the struggle we all face:
You can’t hold pom-poms if there is a cattle prod in your hands.
I could go on for 7000 words to prove to you all the ways this is true. And you know I could. But let me say it this way. I see this truth everyday in my life. If I criticize Jesse for something, and tell him how he could do it better, I see my guy shrink back. If I cheer for him, see him step up. Here is the truth. I spent a lot of time thinking Jesse was not as good as I was. I spent a lot of time fixing him. I spent a lot of time showing him he was an idiot. I spent a lot of time thinking I knew the Lord more than Jesse did. I spent a lot of time thinking I would be better off with out Jesse. And you know what I ended up with? A kid. A husband that had lost the will to lead his family. But God, He intervened in our life. He saved me and started to teach me what it looks like to submit to the Lord. Submission to the Lord included submission to His delegated authorities and that includes Jesse. It is a process for sure. We do not get it right, evidenced by the fact that just last night Jesse stood at one end of the room and yelled, “You are being disrespectful!”, to which I replied, “Well you are being unloving!” It’s a process. But when I stop worrying about if Jesse is qualified to lead our family and start to see him as someone put there by God to lead me I start to root for him. When I cheer for him I start to see him want to lead. When I step out of the way I start to see him step in to the leadership role. As much as I have to step down from leadership, Jesse has to step up. This makes us both have to rely on the Lord. Without Him, and his ordained roles, it’s just a free for all of who is more qualified and who is more right. Who really wins in those fights?
I really try to stay away from out right challenges here on the old blog. Mostly because I can turn into a bible thumping, fire and brimstone preacher from Footloose complete with finger pointed at everyone else faster than you can say, “Now you gotta cut loose…” What can I say? Being bossy is my spiritual gifting. But I will challenge all of us, me included to put the cattle prod down, and pick up the pom-poms. Your husband is a grown ass man and does not need you to tell him how to do stuff. Did I just say that? I’m totally gonna block Jesse from this post so he doesn’t know I actually know this stuff. You know what our husbands need? Someone telling them that we believe in them, that we know they can do anything. Do you find it hard to say that? Do you see the list of ways they have let you down, and pile of things that you believe will never get done and find it hard to believe in him? Let me make it easier for you. Do you believe in God? Do you believe he is the all-powerful creator of the universe? Good! Me too! Guess what is not too much work for God, your husband! Give it to God to work on. You do you boo! (a quote from my friend Ashley) You work on submitting to God, and cheering for your husband. Here is your money back guarantee, If you cheer for him, he will rise to the occasion, if you criticize him he will become another child you have to raise. Ask me how I know. Much love to you sisters, this is where God can become really real in your life, if you will let him.