Mark 10:7-8 ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh.
*This is one of the hardest blogs I’ve written to date. It’s usually pretty easy for me to throw words together about something. But this blog is so tough for two main reasons: it’s been quietly burning in me for a long time and it requires tremendous tenderness and humility. I’m a rather transparent person in my writing and in general. Not everyone is. When you know you’re given a message that involves others, there’s a sensitivity that needs to be taken. And self disclosure when it reveals something less than stellar is at times dreadful. I’ve felt unfit (and too uncomfortable) to attempt anything, so I avoided it altogether. Until now.
I got up around 4:45 this morning with my husband. The “have a good day” interaction was strained. We’re tired. Life is much harder than we envisioned it would be. Feeling like one flesh is a fight. There are times it’s as if we are two people in different universes. Both have desires. Needs. Personalities. And pride.
Our oldest son’s disability and tremendous needs get overwhelming. Day in and day out for years really wears on a person. That has been quite a catalyst, no doubt about it. Every area of our life has been completely affected.
I’ve knelt on the floor in tears before crying out to have the “normal” others take for granted. However, that is not ultimately why us two often stay two versus one flesh. As hard as our circumstances and trials have been, that isn’t why the disconnect can be felt.
I don’t want to die.
1 Corinthians 15:31 I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.
I die daily of what? From what? How?
Our flesh doesn’t want to give up its “rights.” Mine sure doesn’t. I have made sacrifices for my family, but there are moments when I admit I’ve said, “I don’t want to. I shouldn’t have to. I want to be happy like that person…”
I compare. Complain. Covet.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
I don’t give thanks enough.
I grew up like most females, being given equal opportunity in general as my male counterparts. Perhaps even more favor because I’m female (males really do have more expected of them but that’s for another blog.) I was told that the only way to live is to go to college, have a career, get married, have children and fit them all into your established title or position. Your job meant everything. It was your livelihood. After all, people often ask those newly introduced to them what they do for a living.
It’s taught that title=identity.
The world screams I should fight for my autonomy. God whispers for my death.
True fulfillment isn’t in bank balance, title, outward beauty, status, or the possessions I have. It’s in who I am and whose I am.
But the lie is appealing.
Any decent husband will value his wife and her desires. And my husband does. But I haven’t valued his as much as I should.
Help meet isn’t hurt meet, manipulative meet, nagging meet, or Holy Spirit meet.
I am equal in value, but I am not equal in role. Oh I stepped on someone’s toes there. No, I’m not old fashioned though feel free to call me that. I’ll gladly accept the label. I’m not brainwashed. The world is. I have learned and am still that fulfillment comes in doing things God’s way.
My husband has his issues. He knows it. But I have my own. One of the hardest things to do (but it must be done) is to “die” so something greater can live. We have a choice. Right or peace? Ego or love? Our desires or his (speaking to you wives here.)
I’m not trying to depress you. Out of love I’m telling you the key to happiness is to rejoice in the Creator. Be a servant.
It’s not about our happy.
Today, I want to encourage you to be humble. Wives, within biblical legal reason, submit to your husbands. Again, I don’t mean take abuse or submit to something unlawful. Realize the influence your life has in being a female. You were created by God for a great purpose.
I have wanted and sought autonomy. I have quietly and loudly proclaimed “What about me?!” Yes, I do have value. And I show my value through valuing others. It starts at home.
If you’re struggling in your marriage or any relationship, you can only change you. When we decide to serve, we are emulating Messiah.
My decision is…
- I’ll give a soft answer in anger
- I’ll value what you value
- I’ll listen to understand, not to reply
- I’ll help ease your burden and recognize the responsibility you have
- I’ll learn the wisdom of silence and going to God in prayer
- I’ll seek to love, not fix
I choose to die daily. That is true happiness.
John 13:3-8 ESV Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going back to God, rose from supper. He laid aside his outer garments, and taking a towel, tied it around his waist. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around him.
He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, do you wash my feet?” Jesus answered him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand.” Peter said to him, “You shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with me.”
Colossians 3:18-19, 23-24 ESV Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord. Husbands, love your wives, and do not be harsh with them. Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.
1 Peter 3:1-2 ESV Likewise, wives, be subject to your own husbands, so that even if some do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives, when they see your respectful and pure conduct.