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The Purpose of Marriage

Photo by Alvin Mahmudov on Unsplash

God intended marriage to be a living picture of the relationship between Jesus and His Bride, the Church.

We think of a “church” as a building today. But when Jesus talks about His Church, He is talking about His chosen people, the ones He has chosen out of this world and who have chosen to receive Him as Savior and Lord. The incredible thing about marriage is that it is a spiritual mystery revealed to the world of the tenderness, love, respect, honor, and beauty of the interaction and spiritual intimacy between Jesus and His beloved people. (Eph. 5:22-33)

The church is “the Body of Christ.” Each believer is part of it. We are “living stones” being joined together and built up into a “spiritual house” and a “holy priesthood”  (1 Pet 2:5). Paul describes each of us as being a part of the body – a hand, a foot, an ear, an eye, the nose, etc… We work together with the Head of the Body, which is Jesus, to accomplish His good purposes in His kingdom.

Marriage displays the gospel.

How Marriage Parallels  the Relationship Between Jesus and the Church

The Groom-to-Be Initiates the Covenant

  • A man buys a ring, today, and proposes to his intended bride-to-be. He initiates and is the one who invites her into the possibility of marriage with him.
  • Jesus came to earth and paid a great price for us, inviting us to come to Him and to enter into an eternal covenant with Him. He followed the pattern of Jewish marriage customs in almost everything He did for us.
  • He even used the same words a Jewish man would use to propose to his bride to invite His Church to be with Him forever:
    • In My Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and welcome you into My presence, so that you also may be where I am. John 14:2-3

A Name and Identity Change for Her

  • A bride takes on the name of her husband. When I married, I legally became Mrs. Gregory Cassidy.
  • The Bride of Christ also takes on His Name as Christian or Christ-follower.

A New Home for Her

  • A bride leaves her parents’ home to live with her husband and start a new life together
  • Jesus will come get His Bride and take us to be with Him in heaven – either when we die, or through the rapture. (1 Thess. 4:16-18)

A Life-long Covenant Representing an Eternal Covenant

  • One man and one woman enter into a life-long covenant to be there for each other “for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health… till death do us part.”
  • Jesus, God in the flesh (the only One God), and His One Bride (the Church), have an eternal and unbreakable covenant.
  • For thousands of years, a prospective groom would give a great deal of money to the bride’s father.  He paid a “bride price.” This demonstrated that he valued his bride-to-be and was willing to sacrifice greatly for her to become his wife legally. Jesus sacrificed greatly for us, too. He paid our sin-debt with His very blood on the cross. God became a man and lived the perfect life we couldn’t live and died the death we deserved on our behalf. He conquered sin and death to rescue us from condemnation and hell. 
  • A covenant is much more than a promise or a business contract that can be easily broken. It is intended to be binding until one or both spouses die. Jesus has offered an eternal Covenant with us through His blood, the New Covenant – which is vastly superior to and replaces the Old Covenant of Moses. We have access to Jesus, to God the Father, to the Holy Spirit, and to eternal life in paradise with Him through this covenant. We belong to Him from the point we trust in Him and receive His salvation and Lordship through the rest of our lives and into the eternal future. The fellowship and relationship with God that we lost after Adam and Eve fell in the garden is restored!

Selfless Generosity and Joyful Receiving for Both Spouses

  • A man takes on the position of protector, provider, and giver, in many ways to his wife. Today, a wife may contribute financially, as well. But for thousands of years, husbands were primarily the breadwinners and financial providers. Wives took care of the home, children, garden, cooking, and chores (of course, women’s and men’s responsibilities did vary a bit depending on the particular culture). For many women, they had no means of providing financially for themselves in the past, and even in some places today.
  • And even today where women can financially take care of themselves, husbands tend to still have a profound sense of responsibility to provide financially and to meet their family’s physical needs (“For Women Only,”by Shaunti Feldhahn).
  • This is a picture of the way that Jesus gives and provides so generously. He provides for all of our physical and spiritual needs. He provides salvation. He provides new Life and eternal life. We can’t earn it. We joyfully receive and welcome Him and all He has done for us.
  • Both spouses fully give of themselves for the other and receive and accept one another in joy.

His Strength for Her Honor

  • A man uses his physical strength to defend his bride from danger, protect her (and their children) from evil, and to build a home for his wife. He values and cherishes her. She is the “weaker vessel,” and this means it is his job to use his strength courageously for her good. He honors her by fighting for her and their family in ways she cannot fight for herself.
  • Jesus uses His vastly superior strength to save us, to rescue us from danger, to provide for us, to protect us, and to defend us from evil and sin. He fought for us in ways we could never have fought for ourselves. We were the damsel in distress and He was the greatest Hero.

Sanctification

  • God designed marriage to be a place where we are made holy (“Sacred Marriage,” Gary Thomas), where He exposes sin and invites us to go much deeper with Himself. We can’t hide our flaws and sinfulness in marriage. Our motives, thoughts, expectations, words, and deeds are exposed. This is an opportunity for us to repent from sin and turn to Jesus and allow Him to transform us to make us more like Himself.
  • Jesus takes on the responsibility in the New Covenant to present His Bride to Himself without stain, wrinkle, or blemish. He cleanses His Bride with His Word and makes her holy. (Eph. 5:25-28)

Access and Authority for Her

  • A bride enjoys access to her husband’s property, authority in certain matters, finances, and any inheritance he may have.
  • Jesus’ Bride also enjoys access to all that belongs to Jesus. She has access to all of His heavenly riches and provision, access to God the Father, access to the Holy of Holies, and access to His authority. Her identity is now wrapped up in Jesus’ identity. We are co-heirs with Christ. (Rom. 8:17)

Oneness 

  • The one-flesh relationship of marriage depicts the one-Spirit relationship between Christ and those who love Him. Part of the husband’s physical body enters part of the wife’s physical body to become one flesh. Their love and oneness brings forth babies. Their DNA combines to become a new life. This is a holy thing, only to be shared in a life-long covenant as part of marriage.
  • We are the temple of the Holy Spirit as believers in Christ.  Part of the very Spirit of God comes into our spirits. We are indwelled or “filled” with the Spirit. And spiritual fruit results.
  • In the Body of Christ, the fruit of our spiritual union with the Holy Spirit is the fruit of the Spirit in our own lives (Gal. 5:22-23) and new baby Christians, new disciples and followers of Jesus, as we share the Gospel and God’s Spirit works in and through us and others to bring new believers into the Body of Christ. This intimacy we have with Jesus is something we are only to share with Him in the context of His covenant with us.

Faithfulness Is Required and Expected

  • If an earthly spouse cheats with another person, it is adultery. In the Old Testament, that offense was punishable by death, it was that serious.
  • To God, idolatry is just like adultery in marriage. This is a picture of how severe an offense it is for those who belong to Jesus to worship and exalt other things spiritually in their lives. God is always faithful to us. We, sadly, are not always faithful to Him. But we should be completely faithful to Him and He can give us the power we need to walk in purity and faithfulness by His Spirit.

Exaltation and Portrayal of  the Gospel

  • The primary purpose of the human marriage relationship is to point everyone who sees that relationship to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. (Eph. 5:22-33, Titus 2:3-5) God designed marriage to showcase the beautiful differences and interplay between godly masculinity and godly femininity.
  • The husband is to represent the sacrificial love, humble servant-leadership, strength, and devotion of Jesus to His Bride.
  • The wife is to represent the love, honor, biblical submission, and cooperation with the leadership of her husband to portray the way the church is to relate to Jesus. (Of course, with human marriage, there do have to be some limits that the church does not have with Jesus because human husbands are not perfect or deity.)
  • The husband and wife have equal value in God’s eyes (Gal. 3:28) and they are joint-heirs with Christ if they both belong to Him. But they do have different roles. Their value and worth is separate in God’s eyes from their roles in marriage. Both roles are equally important to show the picture of the gospel.

Fruitfulness

  • God also designed marriage to be the primary building block of society and the place where godly children are raised (Mal. 2:15) so that they can model themselves after the beautiful example of their parents. Then the children will grow up knowing about God, loving Him, and knowing how to have a godly marriage in the future, too.
  • The church is to produce godly offspring, as well. The Holy Spirit works in believers and in unbelievers and believers in Christ share the gospel and seek to disciple others and new baby Christians are born into the Body of Christ.

This is why we can’t just change the definition of marriage to suit our particular desires or our culture’s current PC trends.

God designed marriage to be between one man and one woman to display the gospel. When we alter it, we change the picture of Christ and His Church. We don’t have the authority to define marriage or to change it. That is God’s prerogative, alone. Marriage is holy because it pictures something holy and because it is meant to produce holy people – holy men, holy women, and holy children.

Of course, there are numerous other good purposes in marriage – companionship, romance, emotional connection, sexual fulfillment, spiritual refinement and growth, health benefits, more benefits to children, stability for society, etc… But I wanted to share some of God’s biggest purposes in marriage to help us see how holy, beautiful, and powerful His concept of marriage is. And how important it is for us to honor His design and not attempt to change it.

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How has the picture of marriage helped you better understand your relationship with Jesus?

How has your walk with Christ helped you better appreciate marriage?

 

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Jewish Marriage Customs – reveals a LOT about the way Jesus came for us and His words to His Bride, as well as the rapture of the church

How to Have a Saving Relationship with Christ

What Is Biblical Manhood? by www.gotquestions.org

What Is Biblical Womanhood? by www.gotquestions.org

What Does It Mean to Be a Godly Husband? by www.gotquestions.org

What Does the Bible Say about Being a Christian Wife? by www.gotquestions.org

My Posts on Godly Femininity

“I’ll MAKE Him Love Me!”

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They say a picture is worth a thousand words.

My children and I saw these wedding cake toppers at Wal-Mart.  They were labelled “humorous wedding cake toppers.”

I don’t know if you can see it – but – on the second one, the grooms fingers are actually digging into the ground.  He is SO opposed to going the direction his bride is dragging him.

I know that these little statues are supposed to be “funny.”

To me, they aren’t funny at all.  These depictions make me so sad.  This was me – for 14+ years in our marriage.  This was what I was trying to do emotionally and spiritually to my husband. It did NOT work!

God’s primary purpose in designing marriage was to create a living parable, a picture of the relationship between Christ and His bride, the church.  The husband is to represent the selfless, powerful, humble, sacrificial agape love of Christ.  The wife is to represent the adoration, reverence and submission of the church to her Lord by respecting her husband and honoring his God-given leadership. (Ephesians 5:22-33, I Corinthians 11:3, Colossians 3, I Peter 3, Titus 2:2-5)

These  little figures accurately depict some destructive dynamics at work in many marriages in our culture today.  This is NOT a picture of the one Spirit relationship between Christ and His church.

I think these cake toppers are a great visual for us as wives to remember.  When we try to control our husbands, this is how they feel.  It’s not a very romantic picture, is it?

  • If you were in this guy’s shoes – what would you want to do?

Run far, far away…

It is IMPOSSIBLE for anything romantic to happen when a wife has her hands emotionally around her husband’s throat.

Romance only happens when a man is free to give of himself as he sees fit.  As women, we must decide between trying to control our husbands and having intimacy (Laura Doyle “The Surrendered Wife”).  They are exclusive opposites.  If we have one, we can’t have the other.

Each spouse has to be a willing participant – and not feel forced or coerced – if there is to be real intimacy.

LET’S IMAGINE SOMETHING TOGETHER FOR A MOMENT…

We as wives ALL deeply long to be loved, romanced, cherished, adored, honored, appreciated, protected and well-cared for by our husbands.

Let’s imagine that one of these little wedding cake toppers is me and my husband.  I am trying to force Greg to do what I want, to submit to my will, to do things MY way.  I think that I am so right and my way is the only way that is acceptable.  This is me verbally trying to drag my husband to be the man I think he should be.  This is me trying to change my husband.

Try to picture if – in the middle of this scenario, with me dragging my husband like this and him miserably feeling trapped and imprisoned – if he would EVER suddenly do one of the following things:

  • turn to me and tell me all the things he loves about me
  • hand me a bouquet of beautiful flowers “just because”
  • tell me how much he missed me when I was at work that day
  • sneak up behind me and hug me at the sink
  • suggest a romantic walk
  • say, “You know, we need to talk, Honey.  I just want to tell you that you are SO right about everything.  I have totally been a jerk and I want to do everything exactly the way you have been demanding that I should.  I have dreamt of this day all my life.  I now know that I am doing what God has called me to do in this life.”
  • say, “Your happiness means the world to me.”
  • take care of the laundry just to take some weight off of me
  • surprise me with a romantic vacation for two
  • give me any kind of compliment
  • desire to sit and listen to my heart for hours
  • protect me from extended family members’ verbal attacks and insults

A controlling woman repels her man.  With her own hands, attitudes and words, she destroys the relationship (whether she knows it or not).  She demands everything and her husband reluctantly gives her as little of himself as possible, sealing his heart shut tight so that she cannot have it.

A woman who allows her man to lead and who honors and respects him will draw him to herself very subtly.  She inspires him to desire her.  She demands nothing – and yet he willingly gives her everything, including his whole heart.

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The even scarier thing to me now – is  – that this wedding topper portrays how I was trying to treat God, too.   Drag Him around.  Tell Him what to do.  Make Him submit to me…

We’ll talk about that some more tomorrow…

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JUST IN CASE YOU MISSED IT – I POSTED THIS ON MY PW FB A FEW DAYS AGO:

No one in the world – humanly speaking – has as much influence and power to bless or destroy a man as his wife has.

Many women have no idea where their power is or how to harness it for good.

Some of us try to change our husbands by verbal force. I did that for over 14 years. But the truth is – we can’t change them. That’s actually a good thing. When someone tries to change a healthy man – he will resist. A man who is wiling to be controlled by his wife is not emotionally/spiritually healthy.

God did not give us power to change our men. He gave us something INFINITELY BETTER.

He gave us the power to inspire our men to want to be all that God designed them to be. 

We don’t do that by demanding, criticizing, humiliating, complaining, nagging, preaching, ridiculing, ordering or coercing our men by verbal attacks and insults. These things destroy and crush our men’s souls. Men are very sensitive to our disrespect. Even just a look of contempt or disdain or a hateful tone of voice can crush our husbands’ spirits.

Rick Johnson in “How to Talk So Your Husband Will Listen and Listen So Your Husband Will Talk” – says “like any great power, you have to learn how to use it properly and respect the damage it can cause. As a woman you can build a man up or tear him down merely by the level of respect you give to him and the amount of faith you have in him. Your tongue wields greater power than any double-edged sword… It takes much more work and effort to build something than it does to destroy it… That’s a big responsibilty and a power that many women do not recognize…. There’s not much a man can’t deal with in life if he knows he can come home to a loving, supportive wife who respects him.”

Many women think that if we respect our husbands and honor their leadership that we lose our voice and power as women. But that is not how God’s design works at all!

The only power we lose is the power of our sinful nature to destroy. When we are living in total submission to Christ and full of His Spirit, we have the power and riches of heaven blasting through our souls and pouring through us to bless our husbands and children. There is no greater power in the universe than the omnipotent, sovereign, mighty power of God!

A minister at my church who is teaching a class on spiritual authority says that Satan’s definition of “freedom” is the ability to do whatever we want. He says that God’s definition of “freedom” is having the power to do what God desires us to do.

God gives us the freedom, desire and power to inspire our husbands to become the heroes God designed them to be as we become more and more the wives and women God designed us to be.

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RELATED:

A Wife Stops Pursuing Her Husband in the Wrong Ways

Giving up on My Dream for My Marriage

My Demon

Treat Him Like a Man

Soul Mates

Supporting My Husband’s Leadership

Ways Husbands Lead that Wives Don’t Often Notice

I Really Missed You

What I Admire about Godly Men – Part 2

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This is a continuation.  For Part 1, please click here.  And for what some other wives have shared that they respect and admire about men, please click here.

3. What fascinates me about masculinity is –

  • it is this rich, new, unexplored world ready to be discovered, appreciated, admired, loved, respected, and known for those women who are willing to approach things God’s way and who are curious in a humble, awe-struck way.
  • the intricacies of the language of respect and all the unwritten rules and codes that men have with each other that most women know nothing about.
  • that godly femininity has so much power to help godly masculinity blossom and grow into something even more amazing.  What POWER (through His Spirit) God has given to us as women to be His partners in helping to create heroes from regular guys.
  • how visual men are – how great they are with spacial concepts.  I would love to be able to see with their eyes for a day and see how very different the world would look!
  • how good men are with hand-eye coordination – that talent amazes me!
  • that their perspective is almost completely the opposite of our perspective as women – and that getting to know men forces us as women to stretch and grow in our faith and understanding of the world.
  • discovering how genuine respect, honor, admiration and praise motivate men.
  • that inborn drive to sacrifice self for the good of others, even when there is great personal cost involved.
  • realizing that they have deep emotions, feelings, fears, and needs – and that when we obey God and are the women God desires us to be – God can use us to touch those deepest places in their hearts and souls to bring healing, life and inspiration to men.
  • the way that men respond to respect by desiring to serve and honor the one who gives them respect.
  • that tension between being so powerful, strong and able to fight – yet at the same time gentle and loving with the women they adore and with their children – what an incredible combination!
  • their unique brand of wisdom, the way they can cut to the chase and see what is important in the big picture.
  • how the greater the contrast there is between masculinity and femininity – the greater the attraction.
  • that drive to provide for their wives and families financially.
  • the desire they have to bring joy and delight to their woman.
  • the drive to protect those who are weaker than they are – especially women and children.

4. Masculinity helps me to understand God’s nature better by showing me –

  • God is so much bigger, wiser and more powerful than I am.  I am reminded of that when I see how tall, big, and strong my husband is compared to my frame.
  • That I can find shelter in God’s strong arms even more than I can find safety and shelter in my husband’s arms.
  • That God sees the big picture and isn’t distracted by emotions or details like I can be.
  • God’s time table is longer than mine, many times.  So is my husband’s.  But that is a good thing.  I was so impatient before.  Now God is teaching me patience and to enjoy and savor the waiting and to use that waiting time to learn as much as I can and to enjoy being with God and my husband – to enjoy the journey and not be all about the destination.
  • the attributes of God – that He is LOVE, but that He is also JUST.  That He is attentive, gentle and kind – but that He also has wrath.
  • to come before God with fear, trembling and reverence – acknowledging that He is so much mightier and stronger than I am.
  • that my husband (and men) are SO different from me!  I can’t assume that they think and feel like I do.  I can’t assume I automatically understand their thinking. I can’t assume evil motives because I think they should be just like me.  They are NOT like me.  God is NOT like me.  He doesn’t think like me, either.  His wisdom is vastly above my own.  Just like I must study men to learn how they think and what their needs are, I must study God and learn more about Him, His character, His attributes and how to approach Him with respect in the ways He decides I must approach Him.
  • My perspective is not the only way of looking at things – and may not even be the most accurate way!
  • Men are visual.  I believe that is because God is also very visual – He is always watching us.  It is interesting to me that women are more about words and their man’s masculine presence.  That is also what the church uses to draw near to Christ.  We can’t see Him.  He sees us.  But we can read His Words and listen to His Spirit and draw near to His holy presence.
  • How the intimacy of the one flesh relationship in marriage is a picture of the intimacy and oneness God longs to have with us spiritually in worship.

 

What I Admire about Godly Men – Part 1

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I could actually write a LOT more than I am writing – but I am trying to not let it get too long!

1. The things I admire most about men in general are  –

  • The way they think so differently from women.  I LOVE learning how men work through problems and hearing how my husband imagines a scale and weighs the pros and cons, or uses a formula to plug in different variables to see what the best outcome would be.  I love hearing how some men don’t think in words, but only in silent movies or pictures.  I love learning how some men do think in words, but in a totally different way from the way that we women think.
  • I also love learning about how differently men process emotions from women.  That they don’t use words as they process the emotions, necessarily – and that it takes time for them to put their emotions into words.
  • I love the way so many godly men talk about how they want to be sure that the feelings and emotions they share won’t hurt their wives.  They take time to filter their emotions through a “respect filter” to try to keep from causing unnecessary damage to those they love.  I RESPECT THAT!  I am humbled when I hear men say that they would rather hold their emotions in than risk hurting their wives by sharing their emotions. I long for everyone in every marriage and relationship to be able to share their feelings – but I respect that so many men want to be careful not to hurt their wives.
  • So many men I have talked with seem to have a genuine humility about them.  They know they are sinners.  They understand that all people are sinners.  They are prepared to offer grace.  They tend to be so free with forgiveness – that humbles me and inspires me, as well.
  • The way they can literally think about nothing.  I am sometimes SO JEALOUS of that ability!  What a blessing to be able to just turn off all the thoughts and just rest and relax.
  • The way their influence on their children is SO POWERFUL.  When godly men use their influence as fathers – they keep children close to God, they keep them out of trouble, drugs, pre-marital sex, crime, gangs, etc.  Dads are their daughters’ first handsome prince – teaching them how they should expect to be treated by men and treasured.  Dads are their sons first heroes – teaching them what it means to be disciplined, responsible, mature and what it means to be a godly man.  What an incredibly valuable job.  No woman can be a dad.  We need men to be dads.
  • The way they so often think logically and don’t allow emotion to cloud their judgment.  I am thankful for this trait men have.  I’m glad that God made them to be the leaders in marriage and in the church.
  • The way they are often so emotionally and spiritually stable.
  • The way they often won’t allow themselves to be manipulated or controlled.
  • The way they can work in the most awful conditions without complaining – they focus on getting the mission or job done, no matter the inconvenience, personal sacrifice, or dirt involved.
  • The way they play and have fun sometimes.
  • Their sense of humor.

2. The things I admire most about my own husband are –

  • His endless patience with me, with our children, with projects, with working through problems or even just jig-saw puzzles.  He amazes me with his ability to maintain calm, poise, composure and just keep persevering no matter how tedious the task.
  • His amazing ability to do renovations on the house.  He does a beautiful job – better than the professionals a lot of times.  Our home is my dream home – built by his hands – every room he has redone reminds me of his great love for me and the hard work, blood, and sweat he was willing to endure to give me this gift to show his love for me.
  • That he will willingly work on plumbing projects under the house – and can be covered with nastiness and have to crawl on his belly with lots of bugs, mud, sewage and kitchen mess under the house and never complain – just gets the job done, and does it well.  WOW!  Um… we would be in serious trouble if I had to try to fix that stuff! 🙂
  • His godly wisdom.  Sometimes I don’t agree with him about a decision at the time – but almost every single time, when I look back much later in hind sight – I see very clearly that God was leading him, and that if we had done what I wanted to do at the time, it would have caused a big disaster.
  • His strong leadership.  Before December of 2008 – I thought my husband wouldn’t/couldn’t lead in our marriage.  I was SO VERY WRONG.  I just had to step down out of the way.  It has been the most precious experience of my life to watch God work in Greg to cause him to stand taller and to learn to be confident in himself and to blossom into an amazing, godly leader.  I am in awe.
  • What a wonderful dad he is.  There is nothing that warms my heart as much as seeing my husband in the back yard playing ball with our children – watching the HUGE smiles on their faces as he teaches them his ball-handling skills and as they talk with him and he bonds with them in this simple way.  Our children know they are loved by their Daddy.  Since I have learned to respect Greg as my husband and as a dad, we back each other up as parents.  It is WONDERFUL!  If I ask them to do something, and they hesitate or don’t obey me – Greg reiterates what I just said and then they get up right away and obey.  When we stand together united like that – our children’s behavior and obedience is just amazing.  And if he asks them to do something, and they resist, then I repeat what their Daddy asked them to do and ask them to please respect and obey their Daddy – and they go do what they were told. How incredible to work together as a team in unity and harmony.
  • My husband’s spiritual strength.  He is very private about his spiritual life.  I respect that now.  I don’t interfere with his relationship with God.  I pray for him – but in a way that shows I am on his side.  I don’t criticize him spiritually anymore – and Greg blows my mind with the things he has learned and the godly wisdom he shares with me and with husbands.
  • How calm he is under pressure and when there is an emergency.  He is my emotional and spiritual rock – I look to him when everything around me and in me seems to be unstable.
  • He is SO forgiving.  He keeps no record of my wrongs.

Questions 3 and 4 will be continued tomorrow!

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY to my husband, Greg!

And Happy Father’s Day to all the dads.

Happy Unofficial Men Appreciation Day to all the men.

I am so thankful for godly men – for husbands, for fathers.

I am so thankful for God’s wisdom in creating men exactly the way He did to accomplish His good purposes.

And I am so thankful for the way that godly masculinity and godly femininity combine to create unity and teamwork for the glory of God!

What We Admire about Men

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I am getting such WONDERFUL answers from the ladies to my questions yesterday – I think I may have to run multiple posts!  That is a GREAT “problem” to have!  Thank you to the ladies who contributed.  I know many other wives, marriages and husbands will be blessed.

Here are the questions I asked on Friday:

If you would, please answer one or more of the following questions for me to possibly use in a post:

1. The things I admire most about men in general are  –

2. The things I admire most about my own husband are –

3. What fascinates me about masculinity is –

4. Masculinity helps me to understand God’s nature better by showing me –

 

WIFE #1

1. Men are BEAUTIFUL and FASCINATING creatures to watch.

2. My husband is The Primo Alpha Male. He doesn’t back down from me. Through his leadership and dominance, he patiently teaches me submission.

3. It is wild and undomesticated that says, “Women and children first!”

4. I’m more balanced when I take into consideration both sides of God’s personality. Being female, I tend to lean naturally on God’s feminine qualities, which brings me to the image (which I’m sure you’ve all seen) of Jesus carrying the little lamb: relationally nurturing. However, there is the flip side to the God coin, the masculine. If it wasn’t for my husband’s interpretation of David and his Mighty Men, I wouldn’t understand the warrior heart of God, you know, “The God Who wars” and “God-of-angel-armies” –yes, God’s heart of vengeance.

WIFE #2

1. The things I admire most about men in general are – the way that they are so protective of women in general. It is in their nature to protect.

2. The things I admire most about my own husband are – He is an amazing father. He works so hard to provide for our family. He works overtime so that I can stay home with my baby because its what feels right for us. He balances me out and makes me feel safe. He is also a wonderful leader for me and put family.

3. What fascinates me about masculinity is –
How different it makes men. There is such a difference between men and women.

4. Masculinity helps me to understand God’s nature better by showing me – Strength. Men just seem to have a strength about them. Physical and emotional. They use their strength to be strong for others.

WIFE #3

Hi April, Great idea.
1. I admire the way they think, so methodical and focused, and of course their masculine bodies! I even like the way they (blush) smell!

2. It would be a very long list if I wrote everything I admire about my husband, but mostly it’s his patience, and perseverance. He does not quit. He’s also a brilliant man to have around in a crisis. He stays calm and takes charge with grace and finesse..makes everyone feel better. I love that he’s a brilliant man, with a very creative mind, that makes our life so interesting and exciting… I can honestly say because of his mind and dreams , in 40 years of marriage it has never been dull and I’ve never been bored.

3. Great question! What fascinates me about masculinity is focus. We woman can be great multitaskers, but I love the calm steadfast focus of a man at work. It inspires and touches me…

4. ..how steady and reliable, and faithful and consistent God is.. How safe are the arms of God.

WIFE #4

Hi, April! I love what I’ve learned from your blog about how men mirror the role of Jesus and women the role of the church. It has changed the way I think about gender roles in my marriage. Just one example: it is true that my husband gets a thrill out of providing for me! I used to feel guilty, or not worthy of, receiving things like an expensive dinner out or what we call “frivolous” money, but he is happy to give those things to me, so I have learned to accept the gift with graciousness and enjoy it! That’s not to say that I deserve God’s gifts to me; it just illustrates that sometimes there really is a “free lunch”–I don’t have to do anything to be good enough for it.  (From Peacefulwife – I am SO glad!  LOVE THIS!  Our ability to accept and receive the provisions of our men graciously is a gift to them!)

One thing I admire about men in general is that (in my observation, anyway) they are less likely than women to do things out of guilt. They seem pretty clear about the boundaries on their time and relationships, so they don’t have the hand-wringing, “I don’t WANT to but I SHOULD” episodes that women can have regarding extra commitments and unhealthy “friendships.” I like how straightforward men can be about keeping those things in check.

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