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What Does It Mean to Be an Ungodly Woman?

Me in 2003 when I was still so blind to my sin.

We are going to look at what godly femininity is. But sometimes, a powerful way to study what something is – is to look at what it is NOT. There may be some women for whom all of these things (about being an ungodly woman) would apply – hopefully not! But if any of these things describe our lives now, that is a problem! I don’t want us to compare ourselves to other sinful people, but to the holy standard of God. This may be a bit painful, my sweet sisters. My hope is that we might approach this list prayerfully, humbly asking God to reveal any issues He has in our lives with a willingness to get rid of anything that offends His holiness.

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23

I’m estimating that about 60 of the statements below applied to me when God woke me up to my sin in December of 2008. Here is the scary thing – that whole time, I was in church 3 times a week, I read my Bible every day, I prayed sometimes for hours every day. I THOUGHT I was the best Christian wife ever. Yet, my life was overflowing with sin. You can read my story here. PRAISE GOD – HE WOKE ME UP AND CHANGED ME! And He can do the same for each of us! WOOHOO!

Today would be a fantastic day to lay down any sin God convicts us of and to turn completely from our sin in godly sorrow and turn to Christ in faith with a desire to submit fully to Him in trust and to obey Him in all things!

If we confess our sin, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sin and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. I John 1:9

We are going to go to the Bible for our understanding of what being an ungodly woman looks like.  In our next post, we will look at what Scripture says about godly femininity. Even after we come to Christ, we can choose to have ungodly femininity if we choose to live in our own strength and we choose not to abide in Christ or not to believe His Word or we grieve His Spirit. Not to mention, this is a long process, and there are times, especially in the beginning months and years where we don’t understand and we stumble. But if we are His, we cannot stay in a sinful state for long, because His Spirit will work in us to draw us back to Himself and we will want Him to change us.

The goal is to abide in Him and to be filled with God’s Spirit.

That is the only way to have a godly life. I am not talking about sinless perfection – but I am talking about a generally holy life and a conscience that is deeply grieved by any sin. We can’t do it in our own strength! Only God is good. And only He can produce goodness in us. But praise God He is able to change us and regenerate our souls and transform us to be more and more like Christ! THIS IS SUCH WONDERFUL NEWS! If God empowers us with genuine faith in Himself, He will cause MAJOR and DRAMATIC changes in our lives. We cannot stay the same once we meet Jesus! He changes us. We don’t clean up ourselves. He does all the work. THANK GOD FOR HIS GRACE! There is hope for each of us in Him!

You are welcome to share your thoughts!  (I am very aware that this list is not exhaustive. But – it is already very long!)

UNGODLY WOMANHOOD:

 It is better to live in a desert land than with a quarrelsome and fretful woman. Proverbs 21:19

– The woman Folly is loud; she is seductive and knows nothing. Proverbs 9:13

– Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout is a beautiful woman without discretion. Proverbs 11:22

She may:

– do harm to her husband and have hurtful intentions toward him to hurt him spiritually/emotionally/sexually/physically. (Proverbs 31:10-12)

– eat the bread of idleness. (Proverbs 31:27)

allow other people and relationships to be more important than her husband and marriage (parents, friends, children, church, extended family, work). (Matthew 19:5)

allow her husband or other things to be more important than Christ to her. (Matthew 16:24)

– refuse to die to self and to her sinful nature. (Matthew 16:24, Romans 6)

– try to usurp the position of the Holy Spirit in the lives of others as if it is her job to convict people and to make people holy. (John 16:8)

– try to usurp the position of Satan as if it is her job to accuse people and condemn them before God.  (Revelation 12:10)

believe she is good and God is evil. (Luke 18:19, Job 1) She may accuse God of wrongdoing and believe she is right and innocent. (Romans 3:23, Isaiah 64:6)

– not take responsibility for her own sin, but blame others for her sin and expect others to be responsible for her happiness. (Genesis 3)

– think others’ sins are much worse than hers. (Luke 18:11)

– use crude, vulgar language or  cutting sarcasm. (Ephesians 4:29-30, Ephesians 5:4)

– be judgmental, condemning and critical. (Galatians 5:18-21)

– act as if she is sovereign instead of God, as if she is in control over things that really only God can control. (Psalm 103:19)

trust self rather than God. (Psalm 118:8)

– be overcome by fear. (2 Timothy 1:7)

– encourage others to trust her instead of God or to put her or her wisdom above God and His wisdom in their own lives. She may encourage others to sin in order for her and for them to get what they want rather than doing things God’s way and trusting God. (Genesis 3,  Genesis 16:2)

hate her husband or others and deceive herself into thinking that she can love God at the same time (I John 4:20-21)

– focus on her charm and external beauty. (Proverbs 31:30)

– not fear God in a healthy way – knowing she will ultimately answer to Him for every thought, word and deed she has in this lifetime. (Proverbs 31:30)

bring shame to her husband and is like rottenness in his bones. (Proverbs 12:4)

not trust, believe or obey God. (Matthew 22:37-40) She may believe in God. She may even think she is a believer. But she does not live like she truly trusts God and does not rest in His sovereignty and feels she knows best and has to make things work out herself. This results in GREAT stress, worry, fear and anxiety!

not love others with the love of God (Matthew 22:37-40) – because she has not truly experienced the love of God herself. She cannot give what she does not have. She may try to love by controlling others, by being a people pleaser, by being a victim, by being a martyr or by manipulating with guilt.

– use her power and influence in the marriage to try to tear down her husband spiritually, emotionally, mentally, maybe even sexually and physically – maybe because she feels unloved. (Proverbs 14:1). She may think that if he could just hurt as much as she is hurting, he will love her more. But all she does is destroy him and the marriage.

– use her words to cause destruction and death. (Proverbs 18:21)

– harbor hatred, resentment, bitterness and unforgiveness in her heart. (Galatians 5:20) Maybe she wants to forgive – but it just seems impossible. She feels justified to hang on to grudges and resentment. She doesn’t want to let go of bitterness. She cherishes her bitterness.

– stir up contention at home, in the extended family and at work. She sows strife, gossip, dissension, arguments and discord. (Galatians 5:20)

seek to control her husband instead of to help him. (Genesis 3:16)

– demand time, affection, attention and sex from her husband, wanting desperately to be his first priority. (I Corinthians 13:4-8)

give up her position of influence, her ideas, her thoughts, her strength in Christ, seeking the approval of her husband above the approval of God (making him an idol), or giving in to fear of her husband. (Galatians 1:10)

think she deserves to be abused or mistreated (which is a lie!)  and not know her worth in Christ. (Romans 8)

– be consumed by false humility, insecurity and self-hatred, (a form of pride), accepting lies of this world and the enemy over the truth of the Bible. She leans on her own understanding instead of fully trusting the wisdom of God. (Proverbs 3:5)

– unable to stop the constant stream of worry and “what ifs” in her mind, consumed by fear and thoughts of bad things that might happen.  (Philippians 4:4-8)

– have no godly wisdom or discretion. (Proverbs 11:22)

refuse to submit herself to Christ as LORD and therefore cannot biblically submit to her husband’s God-given leadership either. She is adamant that she will do things HER way. (I Corinthians 11:3)

– answer harshly and stirs up anger. (Proverbs 15:1)

– not honor God’s design for marriage (Ephesians 5:22-33, Titus 2:3-5, Colossians 3:18, I Corinthians 11:3) and she may try to usurp authority from her husband and demand that he submit to her and that she should lead or she may become very passive and go to the other end of the spectrum and become too submissive.

– pridefully believe she knows best, she is right all the time and her husband is wrong unless he agrees with her. (Proverbs 11:2)

May of 2005 - Doing things MY way!!
May of 2005 – Doing things MY way!! I was ALWAYS right. I had to be in control. I didn’t even care that Greg loved my hair long. I didn’t take his feelings into consideration at all. 🙁 What mattered to me then was my feelings.

– bring disgrace on herself, God, her husband and family, and may not even realize it, thinking she is so good. (Proverbs 11:2, Titus 2:5) She may smear her husband on social media or to friends/family/coworkers and say the most hateful things about him, trying to hurt him as much as possible, and not even see how she is smearing filth on the Name of Jesus and how awful her sin looks to God and to everyone else.

– may think that being a godly wife is a way to manipulate God and her husband to give her what she wants. (James 4)

– malign the Word of God by refusing to obey God’s commands for her. (Titus 2:5)

– believe she is superior morally/spiritually to her husband. That is pride and self-righteousness (Matthew 7:1-5, Proverbs 16:18).

use lots of words to try to force her husband to do what she wants and to explain herself. She may believe that if she can just explain herself enough, her husband will see that she is right and will do what she wants.  She believes more words are better. And she doesn’t see the damage her words do.  “Where words are many, sin is not lacking.” Proverbs 10:19 (I Peter 3:1-2)

– gladly or unknowingly disrespect her husband. (I Peter 3:1-2, Ephesians 5:22-33) Respect for husbands is something our culture threw out a few generations ago. Many wives have never even seen what real respect and honor for a husband looks like in marriage. This does not help!!!

– be lazy or be a perfectionist. (Proverbs 31, Titus 2:3)

– be foolish, brash, brazen, loud and arrogant. (Proverbs 9:13)

not guard her heart and her marriage inviting flirtation from other men, moving carelessly toward adultery. (Proverbs 2,5-7)

– believe that if she is sinned against, she is justified to sin against her husband or others even though God gives no free passes for sin and God calls us to overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:9-21)

– be unruly and defiant, with feet that never stay at home. (Proverbs 7:11) Or, she may flirt a lot online or have inappropriate relationships with men at work, church or social media.

dress immodestly – purposely or unintentionally. (Proverbs 7:10)

– have no problem reading and watching sinful things, feeding impure thoughts. (Galatians 5:20) She may be addicted to pornography or the fantasy of romance novels.

– be filled with jealousy and yield to fits of rage. (Galatians 5:20)

– be selfish. (Galatians 5:20)

abuse drugs or alcohol. (Galatians 5:21)

set her heart on many worldly things other than Christ to try to find fulfillment in them – which is idolatry. Friendship with the world is enmity toward God. James 4:4 (Galatians 5:20)

– have a husband who does not feel safe with her spiritually, emotionally, sexually and/or physically. (Proverbs 31:11)

not have dignity or honor. (Proverbs 31)

not be trustworthy. God cannot trust her. Her husband cannot trust her. (Proverbs 31)

not care about her husband’s feelings, needs or desires, placing her own feelings, needs and desires far above his. (I Corinthians 13:4-8, Ephesians 5:22-33)

– be harsh and aggressive. (Proverbs 15:1)

– be filled with anxiety, fear, worry and stress not the power of God’s Spirit. (Galatians 5:22-23, I Peter 3:4-6)

– be rude. (I Corinthians 13:5)

– be power-hungry and harbor selfish ambition. (James 3:14, James 4:1-10)

– decide to have an abortion because she is more afraid of the consequences of having a child than she is afraid of God. (Proverbs 1:7) Or because a child is not convenient. Or because she submitted to her husband /boyfriend even though what he asked her to do was clearly sin against God. (Isaiah 57:5, Exodus 20, Psalm 139)

– she may think God cannot forgive her – but He can!!!!! (I John 1:9)

push for divorce against the teaching of Scripture. (Matthew 19:3-12, I Corinthians 7)

gather ungodly counselors to give her the advice she wants to hear. (2 Timothy 4:3)

argue and complain often and have a lot of negative things to say which causes her not to be able to shine for Christ. (Philippians 2:14-16)

– have no grace, mercy or forgiveness to offer to anyone, but she may hold onto grudges, resentment and bitterness. (I John 2, James 2:13)

– constantly dwell on all the things people have done to hurt her and keep score of exactly what others, especially her husband, have done to wrong her. (I Corinthians 13:5)

love sin and evil and hate what is good and right in God’s sight. (I Corinthians 13:6) It is often VERY hard, scary even, for a lot of women to give up their bitterness, pride, control, self-righteousness, gossip, idolatry and sin – until we realize that our choice is that we can keep sin or we can have Jesus. But we cannot have both!

– be irreverent and disrespectful toward God, toward her husband and possibly to others, as well, particularly those in positions of God-given authority. (Titus 2:2)

withhold sex from her husband or use sex as a weapon or as a means of bribery. (I Corinthians 7:1-5) Or she may use her husband’s willingness to have sex with her to determine her self worth and make sex an idol.

– set an ungodly example of femininity, marriage and motherhood. (Titus 2:3)

give ungodly relationship advice to others. (Titus 2:3)

– try to set herself up as an authority over her husband and maybe over men in the church which maligns the Word of God. (I Corinthians 11:3-16, Titus 2:5. I Timothy 2:12)

reject her husband’s God-given leadership and God’s leadership. (I Corinthians 11:3, Ephesians 5:22-33, I Peter 3:1-6, Titus 2:3-5)

despise God’s Word, His wisdom and godly correction. Or she may distort God’s Word, ignore God’s Word, choose parts of God’s Word that she doesn’t agree with or  she may just not be able to see or hear God’s Word. She may bristle if anyone dare rebuke her because, after all, she is always right! (Proverbs 1:7)

– be insecure because her security is not in Christ. She may have idols in her heart – self, romance, happiness, control, having her way, her husband, beauty, thinness, wealth, children, etc… Things that are more important to her than Jesus. She cannot find contentment or joy in these other things. She knows she does not measure up and is not finding enough acceptance or validation in them. She is looking to worldly things and people to meet needs that only Jesus can meet. The results are always going to be anxiety, fear, depression, loneliness, discontentment, insecurity and/or bitterness. (Galatians 5:20)

– be involved in any kind of sinful thoughts, words or behavior.

– not have any prick of conscience about staying in sin. Thinks her sin is “not that bad.” (1 John 4, James 2)

The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus, our Lord. Romans 6:23

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.  For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:8-10

PRAISE GOD! THERE IS FORGIVENESS, GRACE HEALING and MERCY available for all of my sin and your sin in Jesus Christ!!!!!!!!! His blood can cover ANY sin! When we turn to Him in faith, He can and will cleanse us from all of our sins and filth and He will give us a new heart, mind and soul. He can give us NEW, ABUNDANT LIFE! He gave all for us, now, we surrender all to Him and make Him our Savior and LORD. To find out about having a relationship and being made right with God, please click here.

Me in May of 2014 - full of the love, joy, peace and presence of God. Living in Him is SO much better than clinging to all my pride, self-righteousness, bitterness, unforgiveness, idolatry of self, idolatry of happiness, anxiety and fear!!!!!
Me in May of 2014 – full of the love, joy, peace and presence of God.  I still have thousands of miles to go on this journey to become a godly woman and wife. I’m not perfect. But I am not at all the same person I was. I can’t wait to see all that I get to learn and all that God has in store. 🙂 Thanks for being on this journey with me!

79 thoughts on “What Does It Mean to Be an Ungodly Woman?

  1. Thank you for sharing this list. Although I have grown a lot, I still see myself doing some of these things. I am going to go back over the list slowly and write down any that hit home. I will then give it all to Jesus and nail it all to the cross! “There is power in the name of Jesus to break every chain!” 🙂

    1. Blesseddaughterofaking,

      We have all seen so many ungodly examples. And we do battle our own sinful nature and the sinful, ungodly culture. So, that was my hope! That we might look at this list and ask God to help us see any areas that are snares that we might yield to Jesus and allow Him to change. As we lay our hearts totally bare before Him and yield fully to Him – He can absolutely transform us to be more and more like Christ. This is the lifelong process of sanctification. It is painful – but SO WORTH IT!!!!!!!!!!

      I’m so glad this was a blessing and that you are seeking the power of Jesus to break these chains. WOOHOO!

  2. What a powerful revelation! Praise God for using this forum to confirm so many of the words my husband has said to me so many times!
    While I am struggling through mountains of emotional pain and feel the intense agony of rejection, I am unknowingly doing so many of the things on this list.
    My husband has spent countless hours rebuking me and telling me I am doing these things but I have been blind to my own sin! I know I fall short in numerous ways, but I have seen myself as loving and kind and submissive.
    Last night my husband of just 3 months said he can’t take it anymore and he is just about to end our brand new marriage 🙁
    I love the Lord with all my heart and cant imagine life without this man I adore.
    Bless you for sharing this list as it confirms what I am doing and must lay before the Cross TODAY!
    I want to please God above all else and I want to submit to and honour my husband.
    Please pray for the Lord to bring healing and restoration to my heart and marriage.
    In Christ Jesus
    Tracy

    1. Tracy,

      The first 3 months of our marriage was the hardest by far! Things went really wrong in many ways and my response to not getting what I wanted and to all of the circumstances I didn’t like were awful!

      I am praying for you, my precious sister! It is painful to see our sin. It is painful to realize we are wretched sinners. But – there is hope in Christ! I pray that you might genuinely repent and allow God to work His miracles in you. 🙂 I wish I had understood this stuff 3 months into my marriage – instead of not seeing it for 14.5 years.

      Praying for wisdom for you both and for healing and restoration for your heart, your relationship with Christ and your marriage. Please let me know how you are doing, my precious sister!

  3. Hi April. I really didn’t like a lot of what I read in your post today, BUT I know God is working His truth into me thru you and thru His Word. I am sooo looking forward to meeting you in a few weeks down here in sunny Florida for the ladies conference you’re coming to at my church. I’m working with Susan on the facility end of things. My marriage situation is a really strange one, so I’ll pray we can make some time together so I can glean some wisdom from you. Also please be sure to bring cards or flyers about your blog with you that I could hand out to the ladies at my church because there are several of us that would enjoy getting together and going thru these principles. Have a great weekend and a safe drive down. Love, Lori

    1. Lori,

      It is some ugly stuff. And it is VERY hard to read! Yes. I totally understand that. But I love your willingness to allow God to work in your heart. That is a beautiful thing! I can’t wait to meet you and I hope we get some time to chat.

      Much love to you!

  4. PLM,

    You are not experiencing God’s power for some reason. I know you have been stuck in this same spot for awhile. I know you want to experience God. I know you are so frustrated. Are there sins you are holding in to and cherishing in your heart? Sometimes a secret pet sin that we won’t let go of can grieve God’s Spirit and we forfeit His power. It has to be ALL HIM doing the changing. All we can do is be willing and trust Him and desire and seek Him, humbling ourselves before Him with the desire to obey and be made holy. But in our own power, if we are trusting ourselves to make ourselves more holy, we can never do this. He is the power source.

    If you have not read The Normal Christian Life by Watchman Nee, I invite you to! 🙂

    1. PLM,
      This is much more about laying still before God and listening and waiting on a Him than it is about frantically trying to fix things ourself. I hope that makes sense!

      1. PLM,

        I know you have had a lot of sorrow. We have been talking about these things together for a long time. There are actually two kinds of sorrow. Worldly sorrow that leads to death and godly sorrow that leads to repentance. If your sorrow is leading to despair, ask God to give you His kind of sorrow that leads to repentance and then embrace His promises that He has given to you in His Word.

        This change that a God does in us is done by His power as we trust Him and yield to Him. It is not something we can achieve by “trying harder.”

        Praying for you and sending you a huge hug!!

    2. I am going to get that book! Thank you for the suggestion. Right now, God is really working on me in the area of bringing my thoughts into submission to Him. It takes a lot of effort and mindfulness to NOT automatically go to the dark side with my thoughts, but to actively choose to think of the best case scenario. Do you have any resources that you can recommend for this?

      With regard to feeling His power and victory over some of the same battles we fight over and over, I have found that it’s a ALWAYS a certain thought or assumption or feeling that I cannot let go of. When I am able to let go of it, I am free to grab on to what He has been trying to show/teach me…..that is when I notice forward movement. It feels so good to let go. I wish it were more natural to do so

      1. NW Girl,

        This is an area where we as a church do not seem to focus much. Or, I haven’t seen a lot of emphasis on taking thoughts captive for Christ in the churches where I have been. If we do not do this, we can be blissfully unaware of just how sinful our thoughts and motives are. It is not until we examine our deepest beliefs, thoughts and motives under the intense and blazing light of God’s Word that we can see how filthy and sinful our thoughts can be. And if we allow sinful thoughts and desires to fester, they will bring about sinful words and actions.

        II Corinthians 10:3-5
        For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

        What comes naturally to our sinful nature is sinful thoughts. As we learn to count ourselves dead to sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus (Romans 6-8), God’s Spirit begins to fill us more and more. As we are acting in the nature of God’s Spirit, our thoughts, desires and priorities will be different. He will give us HIS desires, His thoughts, His mindset, His wisdom.. Then that becomes “natural” to us as we are living in the power of His Spirit. And then the old sinful ways become repulsive and unnatural to us. But it is all by God’s power and His work in our lives. There is also a conscious element of practicing. And at first, it is awkward and unnatural to examine our thoughts. At first it is hard to see our true motives – but as we allow ourselves to lie still under the Light of God’s holiness and His Word – He will reveal things to us. Often, He does this in layers. I am not sure we could take it if He showed us ALL of our sin at once!

        Much love!

  5. Tracy,
    prayed for your marriage and will continue too.
    Luke 18:27 The things that are impossible with men are possible with God.”

    Lord Bless,

    Amy

  6. Thank you so much for this list & the scripture references. You are a blessing to the body of Christ. I love how the Word of God opens our eyes to our own sin, it challenges us & it changes us.

    1. Crystal,

      God’s Word is alive and active and sharper than any two-edged sword. It is able to divide our thoughts and feelings and expose the true motives of our heart. Hebrews 4:16.

      This is the painful part – but until we see our sin and how desperately we need Jesus – we can’t truly love and appreciate the enormity of all that He has done for us. When we really see what wretched sinners we are, then we can see a glimpse of the depth of His love and the extent of His sacrifice and the magnitude of our debt to God that Jesus’ blood paid for. THEN, we can joyfully, willingly submit to such a God as He melts away our fears. Then we want to obey and love and please Him out of gratitude and joy – not out of drudgery or duty.

      I’m so glad this is a blessing – I pray God might use it for the good of many – to draw many to Himself. 🙂

      1. I forgot to mention how helpful the Scripture references were, and the other ladies are right about their helpfulness in such a list. It is funny…it’s painful to read, and you sort of wince, but…it’s good, too, isn’t it? I wish I could explain it but I can’t. Perhaps the best explanation is when C.S. Lewis writes about Aslan clawing the dragon off of Eustace—it hurt like the dickens, it was terrifying (I do not want a lion clawing me!)…but it was good. It was a good and great thing. So maybe that’s how such convicting verses are, and that’s probably God’s intent. I think if we read these and feel that twinge or shame or guilt…that’s good, because it says we’re sensitive to God. Still going through the comments but I am praying for the troubled ladies as I read!

    1. Awesome posts! Thanks for the links!

      Is it possible that men might have physical/hormonal causes for lowered libido? One of the expectations I have to keep giving up to God is the idea that normal men “want it” all the time. My husband is not in the best physical shape and he takes on a lot of work stress. When we are on vacation, things are a lot closer to my idea of “normal”, though he is still not an “all the time” guy. I’m working very hard to give that expectation to God and was just wondering if maybe some additional info from a medical perspective might help me put that pesky idea of “normal male libido” to rest. Thanks for any info!

      1. NW Girl,

        Absolutely, it is entirely possible for men to have physical/hormonal causes of low libido – and emotional or spiritual causes, too.

        There is a wide range of normal. Obesity, many RXs, stress, exhaustion and low testosterone are some of the things that can contribute to low libido in men.

        In about 40% of marriages, the husband is the lower drive spouse and the wife is the higher drive spouse. And my suspicion is that this is more common among husbands who tend to be passive. I think part of them being passive is that they may have lower testosterone. High testosterone husbands tend to respond to a controlling wife with anger, not passivity. It would be fascinating to do a study on this!

        I have a post about this, let me find it!

        1. Thank you!!! I am going to read this and absorb.

          In my husband’s first marriage, his wife NEVER wanted to be intimate and he learned to live with that, never cheating on her. I think that should probably tell me two things……he is an extremely loyal man (praise God)….and he may have a lower T-level, which allowed him to do that.

          Once again, I know you hear this all the time, but thank you for this ministry. Between you and the other ladies that post here, I am so encouraged!

          1. NW Girl,
            I am so glad you are encouraged! Sometimes, when we read even Christian marriage books, they make it sound like every husband wants sex twice a day or at minimum once a day. But that is not reality. No one talks about this. But we need to!

            I’m so thankful we can be on this journey together!

  7. In school, my girls and I are reading about the Roman empire. We are in a section contrasting Mark Antony’s wife, Octavia, and His mistress who later became his wife, Cleopatra. And boy was there a stark contrast. I believe Cleopatra is the epitome of an Ungodly woman. She had a desire for power that destroyed not just marriages but many men and women. She was manipulative and vain. She used her beauty, wealth and sexuality to get what she wanted. She captured the hearts of powerful men and then used them to do her bidding. She is a picture of a Woman using her God-given power (which we all possess as women) for evil.

    Then there was Octavia. She desired peace in Rome and she went about that by being a wife, mom and homemaker. A quote from the book says that “Even though i cannot help protect Rome as others do…here in my own home i can do my part.” Then it goes on to say that she dedicated her life to making a comfortable home for Antony. Wow! What a mindset. Later in their story he ends up leaving her and going to Egypt to be with Cleopatra. Everyone around her tells her to leave his home and move on but Octavia stayed and didn’t want to give up hope unless he gave her a bill of divorce.(I’m not advocating that women who are dealing with a spouse’s adultry should do this, I’m just admiring her commitment as a wife.)

    After we read that part my 10 year old daughter said, “Mom, Octavia seems like a Godly woman.” My thoughts immediately went to this post I read earlier and I had to ask myself, “Who am I more like – Cleoptra or Octavia?” No, I dont have a desire to rule the world and establish an empire where I reign as queen. But before God opened my eyes to my sin on a daily basis, I struggled with my husband for the control of my home. I wanted things to work out the “right” way a.k.a. “my” way and when they didn’t i would resort to manipulation. Either through crying, nagging, or screaming. Because of deep fear and pride, I usurped my Husband’s position.

    Though I could quote the verses and say, “My Husband is the head of our home,” I tried to run things behind the scenes. So though my husband made the decsions it was really him doing my bidding. And the sad thing is that until God convicted me of my sin last year, I didn’t think anything was wrong with this. I operated in most of the things on this list. I wanted to decide everything and I did not have a gentle and quiet spirit. Fear was the driving force in my life instead of being filled with the Holy Spirit, I was filled with worry and anxiety all the time.I meditated day and night, just not on God’s word. Instead, I meditated on all my husband’s sins and the ways he had hurt me.

    I was so ungrateful. I was not content in my God-given role and I really didnt understand it. I have learned that as women we have power. Immense power!!!! We are gonna either surrender to God and allow Him to use us the way He designed us to be used and build up our homes or we will be foolish and tear it down with our own hands. All of God’s Word is true and in Proverbs 14:1 says “the wise woman builds her home but the foolish woman tears it down with her own hands.”

    I can tell you that Gods word is true. When I did marriage my own way and did not give God full control, I was an ungodly, foolish woman and I tore my home down. My husband left and my children suffered much. But GOD!!!!!! He opened my blind eyes and convicted me, led me to repentance, forgave me and then empowered me to bring glory to His name. He rebuilt my marriage on a firm foundation and is making me into a wise woman who builds her home. I can look at this list now and because of the amazing GRACE God has bestowed upon me and only because of his Grace and Mercy, I am no longer that woman. She is dead and Christ lives in me!! I still stumble I am far from perfect but He is transforming me now there is immediate conviction thanks to His Spirit that dwells in me. Praise be to our awesome, merciful, faithful God!!!!

    1. PLM ill be praying for you. Our God is a redeeming God. He is the God have a second and third and fourth and fifth and…….chance and if he can restore my marraige He can restore any marraige.My husband and i were seperated for about a year and during that time he met someone else, So i coould kind of relate to Octavia too. God used that time and the whole situation to bring to a place where i looked to Him and Him alone to meet every need and then he taught me how to pour out that love taht he had poured into me.

      1. PLM i know how it feels to want to give up
        when you dont see answered prayer, but my sweet sister God is working. I love a qoute that i read once by John Piper that said that “even when the circumstances don’t add up, God is always at work. God is always doing 10,000 things we can’t see.” The battle is not yours its the Lords He will bring you out. With your hand in His He will take you where He wants you to be in His timing.

        1. A very close friend of mind has been in spiritual bondage and darkness for years. At least 7 years, maybe more. She is a believer. I have been praying and praying for her fervently for healing. Just this past weekend, God opened her eyes to her sin, that she had been blind to. And He opened her eyes to Himself. Woohoo!!!!!

          God’s timing is perfect. I praise and thank Him for her deliverance. Sometimes prayers are answered quickly. Sometimes it takes years, maybe decades. Sometimes we may not see the answer until we are in heaven. Sometimes the answer to our prayers is “no.” If something is not God’s will, or we are praying with wrong motives. Sometimes the answer is “wait.”

          Praying for God’s will and His glory for your unanswered prayers, PLM! 🙂

  8. April – Did you also find it a big turning point when you could actually FEEL the grief and pain that your sin had caused? For me, a LOT of dying to self (ugh) had to happen first……but when I finally got to that point, it was such a relief (!!!!), because to me, being able to feel that meant that God had healed my scarred, hardened heart. If you cannot feel pain in your body, you run the risk of doing something that injures it. I believe it is the same with our spirit. Being able to feel that pain is a gift because it makes you sooooooo not want to do that thing that caused the pain ever again! The longer I stayed in self-protection mode and focused on the injustices or what my husband was doing/not doing…..the longer I had to live with those scars and callouses on my heart…..and God HAS to remove those to transform us.

    It seems like the opposite of what the world tells us to do, but go for it and embrace the pain. Ask God to show you what He wants you to see & learn from it. HE WILL!!!! After a while, you will see why it was necessary and you will be thankful for it. I know, it seems crazy, but it is true!

    1. NW Girl,

      I accepted Christ at age 5. I never was involved in any “awful sin.” I was a “good girl,” a straight A student. I waited to have sex on our wedding night. I didn’t drink and never did drugs or smoked cigarettes. I only got in trouble once at school and that was for waiting for my friend at her locker before lunch. We were late to lunch – and we both got detention. I cried and cried. My Daddy laughed and laughed. I played flute and piano and practiced an hour on each one each day and won competitions. I was talented, smart, had plenty of friends, was careful to try to include everyone. I was a leader in the youth group at church. I was always very involved at church. I read my Bible every day and sometimes prayed up to four hours per day.

      What I did not understand was that I was a WRETCHED sinner. I didn’t understand that until that moment in the bookstore in December of 2008. That was HUMBLING. I was mortified. I was finally confronted with the enormity of my own sinfulness and wickedness. I was in shock. I thought I would never be able to love Jesus like “those sinners who had to be forgiven for a lot of sin.” Because I “didn’t really owe Jesus that much”. Um. Wrong! Turns out I owe Jesus just as much as any other sinner in the world. But, realizing that has freed me to love Jesus so much more and to be so much more thankful.

      Yes, I had to see my sins clearly. And see just how wicked and evil my heart is. I had to mourn over my sins and realize how desperately I needed the blood, mercy, grace and forgiveness of Christ. I didn’t owe Jesus $200. I owed Him billions of sin dollars in debt. It was a debt I could never ever repay.

      Thank you for sharing this, my precious sister!!!!!

  9. Praise our AMAZING, Merciful, Loving Father, who never gives up on us and gives us everything we need to fully experience life the way He originally intended.

    I LOVE reading all the stories of victory that you ladies have shared here!!! I am learning SO MUCH from all of you. Thank you!

  10. You are absolutely welcome to share it however you feel is appropriate. I think these are some ways of looking at God’s truths that have helped me personally, and I would love for it to be a blessing to someone else! 🙂

    1. Thank you so much, Carol! I can’t wait to share. I love the way everyone comes together and encourages each other and shares what God teaches her. So beautiful!

  11. I love listening to the sermons from Brook Hill Church where David Platt was pastor until recently. But the other pastor I have heard there has been very good too. Great idea, NW Girl!

  12. I know that God opened my eyes when He did so that I could minister to wives who were suffering in similar ways. If I had learned this stuff the first summer I got married, I wouldn’t be able to have this ministry now! God’s timing is perfect. He is even able to use all of my sin and messed up junk for His glory. He is soooo good.

  13. April, this is just such a great post! I can definitely see areas God and I need to work on. You have put some things I have spent time studying and wondering about but remained confused with into plainer English for me. No doubt there are Biblical topics we all have puzzlement over.

    If we Christian ladies began acting in accordance with God’s plan, just imagine the light and orderly example that would bring to a dark and traumatic world, maybe even helping some see Christ!

    I wonder…You are right about there being so few examples of a wife respecting her husband & submitting to him these days. It seems especially that it would be easy for a woman to become a doormat in her attempt, which is not exactly correct, either! Are there any, for instance, movie or television wives who’d be good examples? We might have to go quite a ways back to find them, but surely they must be there, even a few. I adore old movies but am actually drawing a blank at the moment—the closest that comes to mind is Irene Dunne in “I Remember Mama” and the mother in “How Green Was My Valley”. Also, maybe Greer Garson in “Mrs. Miniver”, though IIRC, her husband is gone for much of the movie. I’d have to watch the films again to be sure. And there’s Ma Ingalls from “Little House”—I’ve not read the books or seen the show in ages, but remember admiring how hardworking and dedicated she always was, and usually pretty calm in even the worst situations (I do think Mrs. Oleson was a pretty blatant example of an ungodly wife—controlling, domineering, gossiping, proud, even cruel). I just wonder if having a sort of cultural touchpoint that way might be helpful to wives. Being Hollywood, it’s tough, but just a thought.

    1. Jen,
      Now you are catching my vision – and, I believe, God’s vision! That is exactly my prayer – that God’s women all over the world in every church of His would hear His voice clearly, would repent of any sin in our own lives, would wholeheartedly submit ourselves to the Lordship of Christ and would shine brightly for Him! I can absolutely imagine the changes that this would bring to the world. And, of course, I pray the same for our brothers in Christ, as well. It is my deepest prayer that God might send a Great Awakening to His people. That we might forsake friendship with the world and cling to Him and rise to become the holy, godly, Spirit-filled generation that He calls us to be for His greatest glory!

      I haven’t watched Little House on the Prairie in a very long time. But, I do believe that Ma Ingalls may be a pretty good example of godly femininity, respecting her husband and submitting to his God-given leadership. And, you are right, Mrs. Olson, was a vibrant example of an ungodly woman.

      The Duggars offer a pretty good example of the husband leading the family and the wife honoring, respecting and submitting to her husband’s leadership.

      Thanks for sharing these other movies. I am not familiar with them, but they may be helpful to other women, as well.

      It is painful to read this kind of a list – but – until we see our sinfulness, we cannot fully appreciate the grace, mercy and forgiveness of Christ. I sure couldn’t. When I thought I wasn’t really that “bad of a sinner” until about 6 years ago, I didn’t value and treasure the grace and blood of Christ nearly as much. That is very sad. 🙁 But when God showed me that I was a wretched sinner – then the grace, mercy, forgiveness and blood of Christ took on a much deeper meaning and significance for me. I had to see clearly first that I didn’t just owe God $200. I owed Him BILLIONS. Every waking moment for decades, I lived as if I was sovereign and as if I was in charge, not God. I trusted self so much more than God. I carried constant bitterness, unforgiveness and resentment. I put many things above Christ in my heart – my happiness, romance, my marriage, my husband, my will, being in control… Every waking moment my heart and mind were just overflowing with sin. I was so prideful and self-righteous. I tried to demand that Greg and God do what I wanted and felt that they needed to do whatever I thought was best. Ugh. My motives were almost all sinful. And I had no idea.

      We have to see the depths of our sin the way God sees them before we can truly understand what Jesus did for us and how precious His sacrifice is. It does hurt – but our response to these things is a good indicator of where we are spiritually, for sure. Are we sensitive to God’s Spirit, or are we spiritually dead? But once we do see our sin and the entirety of it accurately and we are deeply grieved over our sin and turn away from it to Christ in faith, THEN, we can be completely filled with awe, thanksgiving, joy, gratitude, praise, worship and blessing for God. That is what motivates us to want to honor, love and submit to Jesus. Then we are not obeying Him out of drudgery or ritual but out of genuine love and joy.

      That is my prayer for everyone on the planet. I want everyone to get to experience the abundant spiritual life that Jesus has made available to each of us!

      Thanks for praying for the ladies who are hurting and struggling!

      Much love!

  14. Thank you so much for sharing your testimony. I have too been pressing in to God and the holy spirit has been showing me these same things you have brought up. I just want to say how much I hate Satan and how much he robs us women of the joy and peace God has intended for us….society tells us of a feministic way of life that strips us from the gifts of God but Gods word teaches us the righteous way so that even if we live with a non christian husband or one who is not as close to God …. we don’t have to be afraid and think that we will miss out from the joy of the Lord in marriage because that comes from within not from circumstances but by obey Gods word….praise God cause he has made it so simple …. our husband or fathers (head covering) problems are not our consern for that’s between God and him…our consern as women is do we help them are we gentle quiet meek loving …. do we honor them 🙂 oh how the stress and worry of them is gone…..I no longer look and focus on their sins or issues but focus on my own sins and how I can bless them…and I’m so free to be joyful in the Lord! I get so blessed seeing God work in my life and in my families in Gods timing and not mine 🙂 and what’s most important I no longer get the glory for teaching them the way of God or telling them how to act because God does …he teaches them and through that he teaches me …. God is so wonderful I love Him so much and I have so much love for my family more then I could ever imagined . Praise God his word is perfect right to the last full stop.

    1. Naomi,
      I had no idea how much feministic thought I had absorbed from the world and our culture. I read a book, “Radical Womanhood” by Carolyn McCulley” about 5 years ago or so. She was a radical feminist atheist and took women’s studies in college, but later came to Christ in her late twenties. She talks about the history of feminism and the founders of feminism and shares quotes from them and their agendas and talks about their own beliefs about God and their marriages.

      I wept and wept as I read that book. I recognized so many thoughts in my head that originated from these feminist atheist women about 100 years ago. If I had known where these ideas had come from, I would never have accepted them. But they became so mainstream, I just absorbed the poison without even knowing what I had swallowed. I got angry. Really angry. I felt so robbed. The ideals of a handful of women, most of whom completely hated God and the Bible, had greatly wounded my femininity and my marriage and family. And I had allowed that to happen.

      God’s way is the only way that brings peace and joy and that brings harmony, light, fellowship and beauty. I’m thankful for the chance to rip the lies and the ungodly ideas and ideals out of my soul with the help and power and light of God’s Word and to rebuild on His Word alone. That is my desire and goal.

      Yes, God’s ways bring such peace, joy and fulfillment as we trust Him and long to know Him more and to honor and please Him.

      That was one of the first steps I had to take too – was to focus on all the things I was thankful for about Greg and to focus on my own sin and my own obedience to God and how I could be a blessing. Such a better focus!

      I am thrilled about what God is doing in your heart and soul and in your marriage and family! WOOOHOOO! Praise God! Thank you so much for sharing!

  15. Daughter,

    I talked about grace right at the beginning of the post! In fact, if you go back and look at it, I said almost everything there that you just said here about that it is all by God’s power and grace that we change, not of ourselves. I want to balance this with grace. I believe I did. I also talked about grace at the end of the post. But I will add a few verses about grace. 🙂 The post on Monday is about being a godly wife completely by the power and grace of God. And I talk about our motives being thankfulness and joy.

    Thanks for bringing up your concerns. 🙂

  16. Hi April,

    I’m glad you posted this list. I wish I could say it was painful to read but I need to be honest and say I simply feel numb. The list stirred nothing in me even though I could recognize my guilt in nearly every statement. I’ve simply built up so much anger, bitterness, and hurt towards both God and my husband (which I know is sinful).

    Oddly enough, I’ve been praying about whether I should attend a spiritual healing/recovery group at my church. This numbness when seeing my sin so clearly seems like a pretty direct answer that spiritual healing is needed and now is the time.

    God moves in mysterious ways.

    1. Sadrianazea,

      Bitterness and resentment are unbelievably toxic. I held on to both for many, many years. 🙁 I don’t want anyone else to do that! It destroys our fellowship with God and destroys relationships more than almost any other sin, in my view.

      I’m glad that you can see your guilt. I’m glad that you can see you are numb. And I am VERY glad you can see that this is a problem.

      Praise God, He is able to heal you and restore you to Himself if you are willing to let go of the bitterness and anger and turn to Him in faith and trust!!!!

      I have some posts about bitterness and forgiveness if you are interested. You can search my home page search bar for “bitterness” and “forgiveness.”

      Much love! Please let me know how you are doing, my precious sister!

  17. Dear sisters in Christ
    This post has been so powerful and opened my eyes in so may ways! Just yesterday I shared the pain and struggles of my 3 month old marriage and I was amazed to read how many dear women feel so many of the things I feel every day!
    We love the Lord and desire to serve Him but cannot get past our hurt and bitterness and sinful thoughts.
    We are so blind-sided by the Enemy and allow him to enter our lives and thoughts in countless ways!
    I just began a Bible Study based on the book “The Excellent Wife” and it is life changing!!
    As I read the posts this morning, the Lord suddenly opened my eyes and I feel such intense conviction!
    Last night my beautiful Godly husband sat before me and with tears in his eyes told me how I have torn him down and made him feel worthless. He said that he had fallen so far from grace in my eyes it was unbearable. Initially I had showered him with praise and told him how incredible he was and now I can only see what he is NOT!
    Just now I feel this tremendous compassion and love for him and my spirit is so grieved for the pain I have caused him and God!
    I have been acting and reacting out of a lifetime of pain and rejection and abuse and I have been “giving” it all to this dear man I claim to love and adore!
    I surrender this to my Heavenly Father and repent of my ungodly ways!
    I pray and humbly ask my fellow sisters in Christ to pray that the Lord will change my heart and teach me new ways going forward.
    I have been that foolish woman in Proverbs who has been tearing down my house with my own hands!!
    May my Lord forgive me and continue to transform me for His glory!!
    Blessings to you all for your honesty and vulnerability in sharing your struggles!
    In Christ
    Tracy

  18. Wow. This list really hurt, because I fall into so many of the things written here.

    The funny thing is I see it when I do it, and I do it anyways because it’s easier to sin than to follow what is pleasing to the LORD.
    E.g If i get in trouble, the easiest thing to do is to lie and not take responsibility for my actions or lack of.

    Thank you for this list. It has just reminded me of the need to arm myself and not rely on my own strength, or take lightly just how much God hates sin.

    1. Smilinghope,

      I think that as sinful humans, it is easy for us not to understand how much God hates sin. We are prone to justify and rationalize our own sin – after all, “The human heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure.” Jeremiah 17:9

      It is “easier” and “more natural” to our sinful nature to do what comes naturally to that nature. THANKFULLY – when we allow God’s Spirit full control and we are completely yielded to Him, trusting Him and committed to obeying Him no matter what the cost to us – He is able to create new and different desires in us that match His own. He is able to help us hate sin the way He does and to love righteousness and then He even gives us His power to do what is right and good. I’m so glad for this! WHAT GREAT NEWS! If it were not for Jesus – we would all be in a heap of trouble.

      I’m so glad that this list accomplished its’ purpose – it is a bit of a mirror that reflects back to us sinful things that we may unknowingly or knowingly be clinging to – things that need to go if we are to become the women God desires us to be.

      Much love!

  19. PLM,

    It’s not that you don’t ever think about your circumstances. It is that you don’t set your heart on them being a certain way. It is fine to want your marriage restored. We have talked about this a lot, before. The problem is when you make your husband responsible for your emotional well being and say he must do something you want him to do or you will not be content in Christ. I hope that makes sense.

    Please look up Philippians 4:4-8 and you tell me what things you should be thinking about. Please make me a list of things you can think about that would honor God.

    You let go by saying something like , “God, I want my husband to return to me in every way and for our marriage to be healed. I believe that is Your will. But, I choose to be content in You no matter what my husband does or does not do and I am going to drop all of my expectations of him and lay down my dreams and depend on You to take care of me and provide for me. I want to be the woman You desire me to be no matter what my husband does. Show me the way. I need You desperately! You are all I need. You are the Greatest Treasure there is. Change my heart to be like yours. Change my desires to match yours. Cleanse my heart of every sin. Show me any idols and every trace of sin. Change me. Make me pleasing in Your holy site. I want to know and love You more and more and I want to please You and love others and bless them no strings attached.”

    Much love!
    April

    1. PLM,
      How about start with answering the questions from the Test where I asked you about your definitions and don’t worry about this post for right now? 🙂

  20. Had to weigh in….truly godly women don’t “do it all”. I hate the fact that we equate success with being able to “do it all”. We do what we can, and we do our best. Please don’t feel that being “godly” means doing it all!

  21. S,

    If you would like to give an example of how things begin to go in the wrong direction, I would be glad to talk about other ways to possibly approach a situation. 🙂

  22. Daughter,

    Yes, Jesus loved me back then, too – praise God!!!!

    But, I didn’t want to put up pictures of someone else as if to label anyone else an “ungodly woman.” I was allowing my sinful flesh to have control back then. So, that qualifies as ungodly. I hope that makes sense. 🙂

    If you have pics you think would be better for this post – I would be glad to consider them! 🙂 I used to be able to get free pics from a site – but I am having trouble finding as many free images as I used to. So, I have had to resort to using a lot more of my own pictures.

    1. Daughter,

      I don’t intend anyone to compare themselves to me! My hope is that God might be exalted in my life and that people might see how radically God has changed me and how He continues to change me. But, please do not put me on a pedastal!! I am only a human. On my own, there is no good in me. Anything good in me is from Christ, and you have just as much access to Him as I do! 🙂 Victory is in Him!! When we give Him total access to everything we are and all that we have, He is free to make our lives so beautiful for Him.

      Thanks for sharing your struggles. I don’t want to set a stumbling block in your way. Choosing pictures is my least favorite part of blogging. Many times, there is not a free picture that really captures what I want to portray. So, I do my best, but I don’t ever want to discourage anyone.

      You are free to not compare yourself to me. You can’t ever have the whole picture of my life in a blog. I vote to focus on Christ and allow Him to make you the woman He desires you to be. 🙂

      Much love!!!

    2. Daughter,
      Please also keep in mind that I am now entering into my sixth year of this journey. You were not there to see me spend hours per day studying, seeking God, praying, and begging Him to change me for almost 3 years before I even began to feel like I had any idea what respect and biblical submission meant. It was PAINFUL. I stumbled constantly. I felt like I was trying to reinvent the wheel. I am still learning. Right now, I am focusing on my tone of voice with our children even when they are running late in the mornings before school and even when I have only had 2 hours of sleep and am sick. It is only through God’s power that I can have the fruit of His Spirit.

      I had no one to mentor me. It was just me, God, thirty books, the Bible, and tons of notebooks. I threw away my journals from the first few years because the things I wrote were so awful and my motives and heart was so sinful, i didn’t want anyone to read them. Of course, now, I wish I had those notebooks, because I could share in a lot more detail how God changed me and the thoughts I struggled with most.

      If you find yourself feeling jealous or like a failure, or disappointed in yourself or your husband, those are flags to get your eyes back on Christ. Negative feelings are my flag to check my motives and to allow God to check my motives.

      This is a lifelong journey. Take it slowly. Chew over everything thoroughly. Be still and listen to God. He knows how to do this. And He knows exactly all the beauty He plans to continue to form in you for His greatest glory!

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