Monday, June 28, 2010

Christian Marriage

What is the big deal about biblical womanhood anyway? Why can't we just be who we are?
Because we are sinners, born into sin and living in the world which is ruled by, you guessed it, sin.
Biblical womanhood is a process, not an ultimate goal on this Earth, just like sanctification. We cannot check being biblical women off our list; we must pursue and fight for it daily.

This is tied very closely to biblical marriage, the picture of Christ and His Church that we are to mirror in our marriages. Our marriages are not just about us; they are about bringing glory to God above all things, and we often forget that. Worse than forgetting that our marriages are about Christ, we instead make them all about us: our glory, our emotions, our needs, our preferences and our desires. Even pagans know that "love is patient, love is kind" and it does not think of its own desires, but for so many of us, even admittedly believers, marriage turns into being about us, not our spouse or our Savior. This world tells us that our perfect partner will complete us; do NOT listen to that foolishness. Only Christ can complete us. Period.
So what do Christian wives look like?
  1. Christian wives support their husbands, in public and in private. We cannot tear them down with words or deeds. We cannot expect them to be perfect leaders. Of course we can't, they are only fallible men. We must support them, and almost as importantly, we must pray for them. For their leadership, maturity, discernment, wisdom and faith. We cannot expect them to have these things on their own, and we cannot roll our eyes at them when they try and fail.
  2. Christian wives know when their husbands need help in areas of focus, discernment or discipline, either personally or for the family. We can gently rebuke our husbands when they are wrong, helping them get back on track in love. This is very difficult to do, and it is very easy for our pride to take this point out of control.
  3. Christian wives care for their husbands by making the home peaceful, comfortable and clean. This is so much more than doing housework, but housework is, sadly, involved. :) This charge pleases our husbands and the Lord since it is expected of us in Scripture. Instead of grumbling about chores at home, seek to complete them joyfully as a blessing to your husband, even if he doesn't notice. And, when overwhelmed, follow Carolyn Mahaney's advice of making your husband a PB and J sandwich and attending to his, um, other needs - one of my favorite quotes about marriage. You can find her blog about biblical womanhood here; it is VERY encouraging.
  4. Christian wives keep themselves from temptation. Anything can be tempting to different people, but we wives are committed to keeping pure hearts for our husbands alone. Fantisizing is lust which is adultery, and if watching certain movies or listening to certain music or going to certain websites makes your heart impure toward your husband, quit immediately. Even seemingly benign things can tempt; be on the lookout and cut out anything that tempts you to sin.
  5. Christian wives open their homes to others, believers and not. This is one of the most important reasons our homes must be kept. Invite someone over for dinner this week: newlyweds, a couple with five kids. What a blessing this can be if we let it.

There are more ways to be Christian wives, but these are the five on my heart this afternoon. Above all, we as women and wives must embrace our place as submissive but not controlled, gentle and caring, but warring with sin and the flesh. I hope this message causes you to pause and consider your marriage, home and husband; I also added the Girl Talk blog to the side of my blog because it is SO good and applicable to things on my heart right now.

Soli Deo Gloria.

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