A couple of days ago in our Bible study, we were discussing the struggles of how to manage our children and the subject of husbands came up. So I looked up all the instructions to wives concerning their husbands and these are the verses that I found. I only searched wives, but probably could do a search on women and maybe find another one or two.
1Pe 3:1 Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives
Eph 5:22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.
Eph 5:24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.
Col 3:18 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.
These are the commands and only the ones to the wives. We are responsible for ourselves and not our husbands. Our job is to be the helper and this we find in Genesis 3, or is it Genesis 2. We are not doormats and some would say these verses would be commanding us to be, but rather, the next one under in authority. We are in essence the Vice President of our family.
Things are delegated to us and we do them without asking the "President" necessarily. But when decisions come, the VP and the President should discuss things to make sound decisions for the family. They should pray about them together and individually, but if it comes to a difference of opinion between the husband/President and the wife/VP, the husband would rule as it were in this case.
It's funny that it sounds so terrible to us women. But when we're walking with the Lord and walking in the Spirit, this is such a great place to be. My mom's favorite thing to say, when things were tough and there were lots of decisions to make, "I'm glad I'm the wife." The unity that God desires in a marriage comes when we're choosing to walk in His way. We can't say that we want that unity and then choose to make up our own rules about how that might best take place.
Practically, what does this mean? Say, my husband has a different idea about how to spend some extra cash, he is leader, it's his perrogative. (If he is acting in his God-given role, he would probably at least discuss it with his wife, but we're talking about us, not them). I cringe when I hear of wives giving their husbands an allowance. If he has asked for help and this is the arrangement, then so be it. That's fine. I'm not sure I would call it an allowance, can't think of anything else to use though. :)
When my husband seems bent on choosing something that I definitely think would not be good, what do I do? I think then we need to take a step back and consider...what's the worst thing that could happen? that he'd be wrong?!?! That's not too terrible. What if we went my way and I was wrong? But I think there is a place for a quiet word (we are helpers) to ask them to consider another view. But once that's stated, we step back and wait and maybe pray. Maybe pray - ridiculous that it would be possible that maybe we wouldn't pray, but that's sometimes the true perspective we have. For we really should be praying before we even share that quiet word.
Sometimes our husbands need a clue about how much we need their help. For instance, I'm struggling with one of our children right now. He's not cooperating and choosing to do things that aren't in his boundaries to do until school is over. Say my husband comes home and turns on the TV and/or rushes about getting ready to go to the next thing. If I try to talk with him and he seems distant, sometimes I can just put my hand on his arm and quietly say, "Honey, when you get a minute I have something that I really need to talk with you about." Inevitably there will be a moment soon that he will give me so that I can share my concerns.
Ladies, our husbands have the greater responsibility in leading a family. Let's do everything we can to support them in their job, and you know what? I think we'll find that our own job is easier because of it. The struggle is worth the end result.
Because He alone is worthy,