A. A leader needs reassurance that his authority comes from God and not from himself.
1. Husbands are commanded by God to govern their wives. (Gen. 3:16)
2. Wives are commanded by God to submit to their husbands’ leadership (Ephesians 5:22; Colossians 3:18; I Peter 3:1). -unless the husband asks a wife to sin or to support his sin
3. A wife’s submission qualifies her husband for church leadership (I Timothy 3:4-5) – If a wife is controlling, is in charge of the marriage, is argumentative, contentious and disrespectful, she disqualifies her husband from leadership in the church! Her influence on him is that powerful.
4. The headship of the husband is illustrated in Christ and the church (I Corinthians 11:3) God>Christ>husband>wife
Of course the wife also has direct access to Christ, too! She doesn’t have to go through her husband to reach Christ, but she does go through her husband’s authority over her when she approaches Christ (I Cor 11:1-7).
Your personal reassurance to your husband that he is your God-given leader will increase his confidence level in his leadership.
B. A leader needs confidence that God is working through him.
1. God can work through a man’s decisions, whether they are good or bad ones. (Romans 8:29a “all things work together for good for those who love God.”) The “all things” include circumstances and individual decisions. A leader’s confidence can easily be shaken when he makes a bad decision. He WILL make bad decisions! Humility is required for leadership. We learn more from our mistakes. Best to view them as opportunities of learning.
2. Bad decisions can reveal his needs and allow the wife to appeal to him and demonstrate HER godly character. Allow him to make a mistake as part of leadership growth. Help him see the good that can come or has come from bad decisions. The wife’s reaction affects how much good or bad comes from a bad decision!
A wife has a HUGE influence as one under authority! The world doesn’t understand that! The world says authority is a problem, not a benefit. A wife’s behavior as one under authority can largely impact her husband. IF she doesn’t react in the flesh by responding with “I told you so!” or criticism of her man. She must decide what is more important 1.) proving herself right or 2.) strengthening the marriage and her husband’s leadership.
She can refine her skills as an influencer and use her knowledge and wisdom. A primary struggle in marriage (for a wife) is to maintain a right relationship to spiritual authority and use her skills to be a godly influence WITHOUT taking control or rebelling!
It is the nature of Satan to strengthen the flesh to rebel against spiritual authority. That’s what Satan does!
C. The more a wife trusts her husband, the more careful he will be in giving her direction. Many wives don’t appreciate this truth! Her trust increases a husband’s awareness of his dependence on God, his need for God’s wisdom and his own humility!
D. A leader needs loyalty when mistakes are made and pressure increases. Mistakes lead to more pressure and negative circumstances. This is a growth process not a mistake process.
1. Loyalty can best be demonstrated in adversity. Adversity is the best test for the depth and genuineness of loyalty!
E. A leader needs admiration and recognition for leadership on a larger basis (than individual decisions themselves) such as those spiritual qualities in a man’s life that are illustrated in Psalm 15 and I Timothy 3:2-8.
There are two types of authority:
1. positional authority (a husband or a king)
2. influence authority (a wife or advisor) EVERY WIFE has this power! Many times this type of authority can be more powerful than positional authority! Esther is a beautiful example of influence authority. She balanced her expectations with her fears, “If I die, I die.”
The world and Satan don’t want wives to understand influence authority. God empowers and equips wives as they totally operate under obedience of their husband’s positional authority.
A spiritual authority has authority on the basis of STEWARDSHIP not ownership. He must use authority by God’s principles, not his own! The person is not the true authority, he is a representative authority of the Lord.
Ephesians 5:33 A wife respects her husband as a leader who is ordained by God for her good. Her respect is more God-oriented than man-oriented! The basis of a wife’s allegiance to the authority of her husband is God-oriented. Her respect is not to inflate his ego! Her respect is to reflect obedience to God so that I Peter 3:1-2 can benefit the husband and wife. The silent obedience of a wife can correct the disobedience of a husband! The principle of I Peter 3:1-2 can bring about the salvation of an unsaved husband with a believing wife, but it can also move a husband to become stronger in his relationship with God if he is in sin.
Teach us Your ways! Let us absorb Your truth! Help us to judge everything we read and learn against Your Word and only accept the things that are from You. Help us to become the wives that You long for us to be and that our husbands most need. Bless each marriage here, Lord! Help us to follow Your beautiful pattern and portray the mystery of Christ and His church to the world in a way that most honors You, our husbands and the institution of marriage!
In Christ’s Name,