A Wife’s Obedience to Her Husband
(By a Wife)
As a pastor’s wife, one of my largest areas of counsel to women is the subject of obedience to their husbands. We can all see the Scriptures in the Bible commanding wifely obedience, but some women have a very difficult time putting their knowledge into practice. Obedience hardly ever feels easy, especially for women raised in feminist saturated America! We are trained throughout childhood in public schools to believe that the only differences between men and women are biological. “What right does any man have to tell me what to do, as if I am unable to think for myself and make my own decisions!”
That was definitely my own thinking as a young feminist. After I was saved, verses in the Bible requiring obedience troubled me. I had a desire to serve the Lord, but since I wasn’t married anyway, I just put those verses to the side and determined never to marry (I certainly didn’t want to be a pastors wife!).
But the Lord, thankfully, had other plans for me. He has brought me down many paths since then, and I know that the only way to truly be happy in marriage is through a sincere obedience to my husband. Colossians 3:18 says “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.” Women of God, you cannot have a joyful relationship with the Lord without obeying this verse. Many women wonder why they feel as dry as a desert when it comes to religious feelings. When they pray they feel as if their words are bouncing off of the ceiling and not raising up to the ears of God. When you resist the authority of your husband, you are resisting the Spirit of God. Why would the Lord bless you with the closeness of His presence when you are stepping out of His ordained order for your life?
Jesus says that the first and greatest commandment is to love the Lord with all that you are (Matt. 22:37). Jesus also says in John 14:15 “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” And one of His commandments is found in Col. 3:18, as well as in other verses. Obedience to your husband has nothing to do with the fact that you are able to make your own decisions. It has to do with the way that God has chosen to run a Christian family. When you decide not to follow your husband’s leading, you are stepping out of God’s will.
God has equipped your husband with the special ability to lead your family, and so He speaks to him differently than the way He teaches you. The Lord, if you will let Him, will give you the special grace to follow. It is not something that is demeaning to you; it is a glory.
The Bible tells us in 1 Peter 3:4 that this type of spirit is very treasured to God. As Christian women, what is beautiful to God should be beautiful to us. Don’t buy into the world’s lie which tells you that if you aren’t “the boss” than you are “oppressed”! God wants to use Christian women to be a light to the world, and He wants them to be separate from the world. What is strange is that I really don’t see many strong Christian women leading others into true Biblical holiness.
Too many seem to be interested in keeping up with Cosmo and following every latest worldly thing while their family life is in shambles. Instead of being witnesses for Jesus, their neighbors see them as examples of what not to be like, with broken homes, unhappy husbands (or ex-husbands!) and disobedient worldly children.
Ladies, this type of weak Christianity isn’t going to lead many people to the Lord. If the world sees you as contentious, angry, and always unhappy, they certainly aren’t going to want to be like you. If they see a woman who loves the Lord, is always joyful and rejoicing, and has a blameless family life, they may desire the hope that you have and not consider you one of those Christian hypocrites they have always heard about.
As I said before, submitting yourself to your husband is far from easy. But it is interesting that the verse in Colossians just before the commandment to submit to your husband says “17 And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.” When you put on the shield of faith in the Lord, and decide to follow Him, it will be much easier to obey your husband. It is a joy to know that the Lord is pleased with you. Many women are so afraid to give up control that they are willing to sacrifice their relationship with God, and in turn, their relationship to their husband.
If you know that your home life is far from ideal, please get alone with the Lord today, and renew your relationship with Him. Make a commitment to submit yourself to your husband, and see if there isn’t a radical difference in you.