Here’s a tough one and I am far from having “apprehended” this lesson, as the apostle Paul would have put it. The text in question is:
Ephesians 5 “21 Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God. 22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. 25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. 28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: 30 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. 31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. 32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
and an article that is helping me is this one: http://www.reason4living.com/articles/totw0041.htm
How about this?
“A submissive wife is one whose heart is inclined towards satisfying her husband and who has made a choice to be led by her husband, to accept his authority and to be his helper in the broad biblical sense of that word. She does not seek to please her husband because she is afraid of his rebuke or rejection or punishment, but because she delights to please him and finds satisfaction in doing so.”
Indeed, this article perfectly expresses how I have always imagined the marriage relationship to be in terms of submission, and I am beginning to see where the holes are that need patching in the house we are building. I think it starts with a clear and honest expression of motive. As Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 13: “Love believes all things” (when I say I want to share your heart’s fears and desires and do you good, please believe that this is true). “Love bears all things” (when he refuses to open up and I am adrift, I will patiently love and support him, hoping that ultimately, he will come around and we can be a team). “Love hopes all things … keeps no record of wrongs …is kind.” I know this is out of order, but no less true for that.
Please pray with me as I work on acquiring this skill and never letting go of it. And if you’ve walked this road a little further than me (in faith or years), please share any advice or thoughts you may have.