I know a lot of Christian women have a problem with the idea of submitting to a man. I have no issues with it at all. I am a naturally submissive person. It’s not always the best way to be, but it keeps me out of power struggles, including in my marriage. But that’s not the only reason that I’m able to submit to my husband. I’m able to respect my husband because he plays his role as well! I’ll explain. First, here are the verses I’m referring to.
Ephesians 5:22- 33 says: “Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— for we are members of his body. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.” This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.”
First of all, submitting to your husband does not mean that you have to bow down to him and be at his beckon call all day every day. It means that you respect your husband, you follow his lead in your marriage, and you allow him to guide you and your family (often by making decisions). Entering into a Christian marriage does not mean you are under the reign of a dictator. As long as your man is being a Biblical husband!
I think a lot of women read the submission part of the passage and just get mad and stop reading. Read the rest! Husbands have a job too! If he does not do his job, it’s awfully hard for a woman to submit to him. If a woman is not willing to submit, it also makes it more difficult for the husband to love his wife! Honestly, the man’s job sounds a lot harder to me. We don’t have to make all of the hard decisions and they have to care for us and give themselves up for us! What are we complaining about!?
Of course, we’ve only been married for about a year and a half, so I know that marriage is going to get difficult and we are going to have more big decisions to make and we are going to get into many more arguments over the years, but this is where I feel that we are right now, and I hope that we continue to operate this way: Mr. Rockefeller knows that I would follow him anywhere and to anything that he felt God led him to. But he loves me and respects me enough to talk to me and understand my feelings before making decisions for us. He does not do things without talking to me first. We talk about the decisions we will make together. Mr. Rockefeller considers my opinions. If we can’t make a decision, Mr. Rockefeller will get the final say because I submit to him. I know that he leads me in the direction that he feels God wants us to go, and I trust him in that. He does not use this Bible verse to end discussions or to get what he wants. We both know that we have roles to play in our marriage and that our marriage will have much smoother sailing if we do what the Bible tells us to do. I know that if we both thought that we were going to get the final say every time, there would be a lot more arguments!
I know that submission is a lot easier for me than it is for most people. I do not like to lead or to make big decisions. I enjoy being second in command. I’m aware that most people are not this way. But I don’t know that it would be so easy for me if Mr. Rockefeller was not holding up his end of the deal. If I had a husband who was mean, demanding, and controlling, it would be a lot more difficult to follow his lead and give him respect. So all you unmarried ladies out there, find a man who is respectable, loving, and willing to follow God’s lead!
If you are a Christian, you know that it can be freeing and comforting to give up control, because you have given your life to Christ. He is in control now. It will work the same way when you, women, give up your control in your marriage in the way that the Bible tells us to. Try it out and see what happens!