An email from a wife:
As for my husband, he is happier than ever! He is constantly saying how he is the luckiest man alive. He texts me sweet nothings from work. He is so sweet at home.
It’s like, while I refused to submit (to honor his God-given leadership), we were locked in this power struggle. Like two people arm wrestling. He had to resist me and fight against me, because I was fighting him. But now that the power is firmly in his lap, there is no reason for a struggle. He knows that he has the final word, no matter what.
So he can allow me to have my way on many things, but because he is fully in charge, it’s an affirmation of his power, not a concession of it. That is the key I didn’t understand before. Someone is going to be the head of your marriage. One of you must lead. One must have the final say. If we are fighting for that role all the time, jockeying for that position of strength, then you spend half your time fighting for control, and the other half defending that control. Either way you are fighting all the time!
Once you surrender and say, “okay, I give, you win”, and you really mean it, then your man is free to let you make some choices, and it’s not an insult or a threat to him or his position. Crazy as it sounds, I actually get my way MORE now than before, lol, because we both know neither of us has anything to prove. He is allowed to be an imperfect human, he doesn’t have to explain or justify himself, he is the head, nothing will ever challenge that. We can give each other grace now, because we aren’t competing. We are more of a team than ever!
So, thanks for reading my novel, lol. I just wish that more women could understand this! How much happier would they be!
Blessed by submission,
Another peaceful wife
I was SO in charge of things the first 15 years of our marriage. I demanded that my husband do things my way. I actually expected him to submit to me – not consciously. But I expected to have my way – and nothing was going to stop me. 🙁 I ended up with a husband who didn’t want to do ANYTHING I wanted to do. He just unplugged and went silent. And I was lonely, worried, anxious, afraid, overwhelmed, stressed and far from God – but I didn’t even realize it.
I had the same thing happen in my marriage that this wife did – I get what I want SO MUCH MORE now than I ever did before. My husband loves to see me happy. He actually gives me a lot of freedom. I do almost anything I want. But if he sees me doing something that might get me in over my head, he will ask me to slow down the pace, or ask me to get more rest. He takes great care of me. Any time he does ask me to change something (which is quite rarely) – it is always for my good and my benefit. He makes this REALLY easy for me. I am extremely blessed.
Many women think that if they let their husband lead – they won’t have a voice and won’t get what they want. That is usually not a problem – not when a man is feeling respected.
** There are some men, men with active addictions, men who have uncontrolled mental health disorders, men who are currently involved in infidelity, men who physically abuse their wives, men who ask their wives to sin – who wives cannot submit to. God does not ask us to submit to sin. He does not ask us to respect sin. Thankfully, there are usually other things we can cooperate with and other things we can respect. But the authority of His Word trumps our husbands’ God-given authority. If you are in a serious situation like this – you need godly, experienced help ASAP. Your situation goes way beyond the scope of this post or this blog.
I am primarily submitting myself to Christ and because I love and respect Him, I cooperate with my husband’s leadership and respect my husband – so I desire to seek God’s will above my own. It’s not about what I want anymore. It’s about what will bring glory and honor to Jesus.
Still, when I take the emphasis off of getting my way – and I do things God’s way – I paradoxically end up getting “my way” much more often than I did when my way was my primary goal.
I hope that makes sense!
Thanks to this wife for sharing her story!
THIS IS A PROCESS
Each wife will have a different timetable, a different learning process, a different journey. Each wife will learn things at her own pace and each couple has their own unique struggles, personalities and obstacles. For me, it took about 2 years before the new ways became “normal.” And I was extremely determined to learn this stuff – and studied for several hours a day most days during those two years. I also had a very stable childhood with parents with an intact marriage and not a lot of baggage from the past. Some wives take many more years than that – the rate of learning and growth depends on a host of factors. I messed up a lot during the time I was trying to learn and didn’t understand, and was desperately looking for resources and trying to figure things out without many godly examples or a mentor. But I had God! And His Word. And He brought resources to me over time. Thankfully, my husband was very patient with me as I stumbled through this stuff. It is much like learning a brand new language – learning to be a godly wife, an obedient believer, a Spirit-filled woman.
Our job is to seek God with all our hearts, to desire Him above everything else, to hunger for His Word, to fill our hearts with His praises, to allow Him to show us all our sin and remove it. Our job is to want to learn all that He has to teach us and to be totally yielded and available for Him to use in any way He desires.
He doesn’t guarantee us that our husbands will change. God guarantees that WE will change when we submit to Him! Our motives can’t be to learn to respect and submit so that our husbands will change. That doesn’t work! Our motives must be pure in God’s sight – to honor Him, to obey Him, to know Him more, to be filled with His Spirit, to bring Him glory and seek His will and His wisdom.
Then God is in charge of the timing, the results, the changing – for us and our husbands.
But when God is your partner in your marriage and life – each day is an amazing adventure. It is SO worth it to do things His way!
Much love to you, my precious sisters in Christ!