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Day Eleven:

Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.” Eph. 5:22

Women who are constantly negative toward their husbands – especially by speaking evil of them to others – show great disrespect. Determine not to do that today (or ever!). This challenge to encourage is closely connected to submission.

Men respond to women who respect them. What do you respect about your husband? Part of that respect includes submission to his authority. Let your husband know how respecting him makes it easier to submit to his leadership. Show your respect in public by listening to him and smiling at him when he speaks. Place your hand in his as you walk together.</span?
If you feel there is nothing to respect, search harder …nearly every man has some core characteristic that can be nurtured and respected. In any case, you must still cultivate a submissive spirit to his position of leadership…”as to the Lord.”

By Nancy Leigh DeMoss
Published by Revive Our Hearts, © 2005. Permission granted to photocopy in the exact form, including copyright. All other uses require written permission.
Revive Our Hearts * P.O. Box 2000, Niles, MI 49120 * www.ReviveOurHearts.com 

A lot has already been written about husbands, wives and submission.  All too often the wives resist it–and all too often the husbands sound like Cartman saying “You will respect my authoritay!”  Rather than rehash it all here, I hope to put it into a new perspective for this challenge.

It is crystal clear in the Bible that God has told wives to submit to their husbands.   Ephesians 5:22, Colossian 3:18, and I Peter 3:1 are all explicit so that there really is not a question of whether wives should or should not submit to their husbands.  It’s also clear that there are not prerequisites there, such as “Submit to your husband if he deserves it” or “Submit to your husband if you agree with him.”  Nope it’s not a suggestion–it’s a requirement.

In fact it is my understanding that the Greek word used for “submit” in all of those verses says it in an indicative tense.  That means that rather than it being an imperative (like “You Shall…”)  it is an indication of what already exists (like “You Are…”) .  Thus the verses don’t say “Wives…you are commanded to submit to your husbands and you have to actively choose to obey that commandment” but rather “Wives…you are in the state of being under the authority of your husband.  This is your state of being–submission.”  Thus, we can rebel against it all we want and stubbornly refuse, but we just are not the leaders in our homes–we ARE in submission to our husbands.  Whether he is good at it or bad at it, he is the federal head and we are not.

How does this relate to our challenge?  Well as a wife living day-in and day-out with a man when he is ill, when he is tired, when he is not at his best … all too often we can see that side and begin to lose respect for him.  Rather than seeing him as the man who helps others, works hard, attends church and studies God’s word, we begin to see him as the man who postpones chores he doesn’t like, who is short-tempered with the kids, or who leaves his jeans in the middle of the floor.

This challenge is a reminder to us to respect our husbands in two ways.  First, we need to remember his position.  He IS the federal head of our family and as such he is owed the respect of being the head.  Don’t forget his position!  Second, when we see him at his “less than finer” moments we need to remind ourselves of the things he does that are worthy of respect.  Don’t let those outside your family heap respect on your husband when he doesn’t get the same in his own home.  Take a moment today and remember the things he does and purposely remind yourself of those characteristics that are worthy of respect.

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