Well, I am continuing through the book Created to be a Helpmeet by Debi Pearl, and am continuing to be convicted by every chapter that I read! Today I am specifically focusing on chapters six and seven.
My goal in this series is to share some of my thoughts on the things I have learned, but this in no way replaces picking up and reading the book yourself. There is so much information in those convicting pages that I could only hope to share a glimpse with you.
Something I have been reminded of is how much our view of God’s Word is skewed by our world view and the things that society constantly propagates. We make assumptions of truth based on either society or the pulpit instead of Scripture and never even realize we are off-base.
If I were to ask you, “What does it mean to fear God?” you would probably respond, “to respect or honor Him.” Right?
That used to be my answer too…because that is something I had heard from Sunday school/pulpit/radio preachers my entire life. But I have now changed my mind…
Fear of God
God makes his purpose and calling for a Christian wife VERY clear in His Word.
“Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body.” Ephesians 5:22-23
Wives, submit to your husband. Period. No matter what.
This concept tends to rub us, as wives, the wrong way. What if my husband is wrong? What if he is not a Christian? What if I want to be more independent? What if those verses are totally outdated? What if…what if…what if???
God is not a God of yesterday and His Scripture was meant for all times. He meant for marriages of today to represent Christ and the church as much as He did 2000 years.
***I want to preface this by saying that we serve a God of LOVE and when we follow His simple commands and stay within His will, He will SHOWER us with blessings! Our marriage will be as beautiful as the Garden of Eden!***
But we also serve a God of JUSTICE who says:
“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatever a man sows, that shall he also reap.” Galatians 6:7
To enter into the covenant of marriage before God and ignore His direct commands and purpose for our role in that union is making a mockery of marriage and God’s hand in it!
“The Lord is a jealous and avenging God; the Lord is avenging and wrathful; the Lord takes vengeance on his adversaries and keeps wrath for his enemies. The Lord is slow to anger and great in power, and the Lord will by no means clear the guilty. His way is in whirlwind and storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet. He rebukes the sea and makes it dry; he dries up all the rivers; Bashan and Carmel wither; the bloom of Lebanon withers. The mountains quake before him; the hills melt; the earth heaves before him, the world and all who dwell in it. Who can stand before his indignation? Who can endure the heat of his anger? His wrath is poured out like fire, and the rocks are broken into pieces by him.” Nahum 1:2-6
When the Bible says to “fear the Lord” I believe it is calling us to BE AFRAID of the what will happen if we don’t stay in His will or follow His commands! Christians today (including me) take sin too lightly because we know we serve a loving and forgiving God. But we also serve a jealous and avenging God who has no qualms in bringing to justice those who do not follow Him or His commands.
I want to follow His calling in my life so that my marriage will be beautiful…but on the tough days, when submitting joyfully seems out of reach, my FEAR of God’s wrath is excellent motivation!
Fear of Consequences
This post might seem a bit one-sided, so I want to clarify by saying that difficult marriages are very rarely (if ever) caused by only one side. But Debi Pearl makes it clear that she is not here to talk about husbands or their part in the struggle; but instead on harsh realities and consequences of OUR actions (whether our husband is in the wrong or not).
EVERY husband has faults…laziness, dirty mouth, doesn’t pick up after themselves, low standards for what the family watches, shouts at the kids, temper, ungrateful, or even unsaved. Any of these ring a bell?
Disappointment/anger/frustration might be deserved – but it’s time we face reality. Are WE ready to face the consequences of giving him “what he deserves”?
There are several testimonies in Created to be a Helpmeet of good Christian wives married to good Christian men and they never thought divorce could touch them. So they took lightly the wisdom God gave on how to have a beautiful marriage and focused instead on what they thought they deserved at the time.
We all know that we are living with fallen men – but are we ready to live WITHOUT them? Raise kids without them? Pay bills without them? Fulfill God’s call on our life without them???
None of us are without danger of our marriage falling apart…are the tensions of today worth it?
It’s a new morning – great is His faithfulness!
It is never too late to have a glorious marriage! Whether you are a year into your union or into 50 years, all we have to remember is: it starts with US! It’s time to stop saying, “But he said something nasty…but he wasn’t good to the children…but he made a stupid decision…but he is letting bad influences into our home…but he is a lazy bum!”
Remember what God has clearly called us to do…and remember what happens to those to mock God and His commandments!
We could be the helper our husband needs starting today!
Not by nagging but by loving.
Not by showing frustration but by showing mercy.
Not by practicing bitterness but by practicing forgiveness and thankfulness.
God wants us to fear His wrath and the consequences it brings, not to live in fear, but to be motivated to embrace the role He has given us and be blessed for it!
I hope that this has opened up a new point of view into what God expects from us. Let me know your thoughts on this concept.