Friday, April 16, 2010

Being the Church

Have you read Ephesians 5? The chapter that makes many women cringe as they are told to be 'submissive' and 'honoring' to their husbands. Can I just tell you I love that chapter!?
I have been married almost one year. It has been a joy! Ups and downs, but I would not trade any of my memories for any thing! I have to say that the best thing about being engaged was the Pre-marital counseling my hubby and I received. During that, we studied Ephesians 5. Zane was encouraged in what it means to 'be Christ' and die for his wife. I was encouraged in what it means to 'be the church' and through that be submissive and honor my husband. Now, my idea of honoring my husband is not doing something I know my husband would not be thrilled about. In my stubbornness, I have fallen short of being honoring in many things. It is definitely an attribute I want more of in my life--less of me. Being submissive...well, I can be obedient, but don't think for a moment I don't question why my husband might want things a certain way. However, even through my questioning, I know it would not be honoring, nor submissive, if I didn't follow through with whatever my hubby desires. I would love to be a wife my husband can say in all circumstances I honor him, and I submit to him...if he said that though, it would be a lie.
But, when I got married, I had to understand my stubbornness was going to need to be put aside. I would not always get my way, I may get my feelings hurt, I may even be wrong (Oh how I hate when that happens!!!). But if in our marriage we are going to strive to reflect Christ and the church through our relationship with each other, I must understand the beauty of the commands in Ephesians 5. Before you get all riled up about being 2nd class to your husband, know that by men being called to act as Christ in the marriage they are called to DIE to us. Do you grasp the depth of that? Die to us. I don't know about you, but that is a scary command. One that we women can take advantage of if we manipulate our men. Oh how I pray God does not let me use that against my husband. Do you see? In our marriage, our husbands are to understand our needs, our desires, the things our heart longs for, and literally TEND to them. By doing so, they are dying to us. How can we not honor and submit to our mates when they are tending to our desire for love, compassion, care--goodness...and an ear to listen when we have had a long day! This command also gives husbands the duty of, well, to put it bluntly, keeping us in check. Telling us when they think something isn't a good idea. When a sale item is still too much. When they really want us to not plan that trip. It could be a number of things. But unless their minds change, we are to honor them. Submit to them. In doing so, we are honoring and submitting to Christ. That is beautiful. Who knew that by bending to my husband I can be pleasing to my Saviour at the same time. How I hope I can grow in this, and learn to do so with a good attitude.

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