originally written by Anne on August 22, 2008
Today’s picture is of my husband’s very favorite way to make coffee – in a French press. He promises that coffee just tastes better when he uses freshly ground coffee, heats the water to exactly 200 degrees Fahrenheit, and allows it to brew in his French press for exactly four minutes.
Do I agree? Well, yes and no. Sometimes I wish I could just program an electric coffee maker to have my coffee ready when I wake up in the morning. But I must admit that my husband’s coffee is so good that I’d rather stay home than have Starbucks any day. (Yes, any time you’re in town, just come over. We’d love to share!)
If I let it, my husband’s eccentric (to me) coffee-making ways can drive me crazy. But it’s funny, coffee just doesn’t taste very good if I’ve fussed and complained while making it his way. That’s why I’d rather enjoy my morning with him and enjoy the coffee, even if it means I must give up a little of my freedom to do so.
So what if it’s something bigger than coffee? Like theology! Or parenting! What if I know I’m right (and he’s wrong)?
Thankfully, God’s Word has instruction for us wives, and “YHVH will bless His people with peace” (Psalm 29:11). For a home filled with love and peace, read on….
Looking at God’s Word…
First, let’s look at some basic principles in God’s Word, then we’ll talk about some specific situations in which we can apply these principles.
- Principle #1 – Submit to his leadership, in the same way that the church submits to the leadership of Christ. How often? “In everything.” Source: Ephesians 5:22-24, Colossians 3:18
- Principle #2 – Respect is an essential part of submission. In other words, submission is not just an outward action but also an inward attitude. An attitude of respect is the duty of a godly wife. Source: Ephesians 5:33
- Principle #3 – Husbands are “won over” by the behavior of their wives, not by their words. This behavior should be characterized by purity, reverence, inner beauty, and a gentle and quiet spirit. Source: 1 Peter 3:1-4
- Principle #4 – Wives should do what is right rather than give way to fear. Fear is often characterized by nagging, contention, and even anger. Source: 1 Peter 3:5-6, Proverbs 21:19, Proverbs 27:15
Now, the bottom line – Do we trust God? Do we really believe that He is capable of changing our husband’s hearts, without any interference from us? Do we believe God’s Word enough to obey our loving heavenly Father?
Isn’t it easy to say we are believers? Yet Isn’t it tough to act upon our belief?
Question – What do I do if my husband does not believe?
Anne, my husband doesn’t seem to care about spiritual things? I’m so concerned about him. Is there anything I can do?
The Bible says that our husbands can be won over to belief in God’s Word by our behavior, so if your husband doesn’t believe, the first thing to do is check your behavior. Make a list of the types of behavior that are listed in 1 Peter 3:1-4, and bring your list with humility before the Holy Spirit in prayer. Ask Him to show you the areas that you can work on.
Secondly, ask the Holy Spirit to convict you before you open your mouth. Don’t preach. Don’t nag. Test God and His Word by allowing His Spirit to win your husband “without words” on your part.
Finally, check that you are submissive to your husband in every area, showing him proper obedience and respect. Your submission to your husband shows your trust in God and your lack of fear.
Do you believe that God loves your husband even more than you do? Then you must trust Him.
Question – Can my husband get jealous of my faith in God?
Anne, my husband told me that sometimes he’s jealous of how much I love the Lord and want to spend time with Him. I can’t believe he would say that! What should I do?
You know, we often feel like we’re spiritual when we’re reading our Bibles, praying, and worshipping. Yet Isaiah 58 and James 1:22-27 tell us that real “religion” has nothing to do with feeling and everything to do with action.
So why did God create Woman? To be a suitable helper to her husband. (See Genesis 2:18-25.) The Apostle Paul tells us that single women are free to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit, but a married woman is now to be concerned about how to please her husband (1 Corinthians 7:34). It might not feel spiritual, but it is!
So your husband may indeed be justified in feeling jealous. Having a daily quiet time is urgently important, but be sure not to leave God’s presence and be disobedient to Him by neglecting the very job He has given you to do. Are you being a “suitable helper” to your husband? Are you concerning yourself with how to please your husband? This is “true religion.”
Question – What if my husband doesn’t like the way we homeschool?
Anne, my husband thinks we should stop homeschooling and should put our kids in public school. I know God told us He wants us to homeschool. What should I do?
If your husband has asked you to put the kids in a public school, then it would be impossible for God to tell you to homeschool. How do I know this? Because God says that wives are to submit to thier husbands “in everything” (Ephesians 5:24) and that wives are to obey their husbands, their masters (1 Peter 3:5-6). God cannot tell you something that is the opposite of what He has revealed in the Scriptures.
Have you ever heard anything like this in our society? No way! Nor will your own heart want to cooperate. You’ll probably be gripped with fear over the harm that could come to your children once they’re outside of your protection and care.
Yet God says we are to submit “as unto the Lord” (Ephesians 5:22). To obey “in everything” requires radical faith in a God who loves us (and our children) more than we can believe. Again, 1 Peter 3:6 says we are not to give way to our fear. Do you believe that God loves you? Can you trust Him?
Question – How can I get my husband to be the spiritual leader for me and my children?
Anne, I keep asking my husband to have daily devotions with me and the children. I think it is so important for our children to see their Dad’s faith in action, yet he really drags his feet. What can I do?
Deuteronomy 6:7-9 says that the best way to communicate spiritual truth to your children is to do it when you “sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.” So you can rest assured that you don’t absolutely have to have a formal “devotional time” with your children, especially if your husband doesn’t want to lead it.
This is an area where it’s easy for wives to nag so much that they become a “continual dripping” in their home (Proverbs 27:19). Have you ever had a drippy roof and had to listen to a drip… drip… drip… drip… for hours at a time? (I have a leak like that right now, as a matter of fact!) It’s very annoying, and the more it drips, the more I’d to about anything to get it to stop dripping!
Becoming a “drip” of a wife is the complete opposite of God’s plan, which is for her to show respect to her husband (Ephesians 5:33). Think about it — if you show respect, honor, and esteem to your husband, won’t your children learn more about God and about life than they would have if you had continued nagging and complaining about daily devotions?
Aren’t there just so many ways in which we can give into fear rather than trusting God to guide and lead our husbands? Isn’t it just so easy to want to be in control, even if it means we sacrifice a loving relationship with our husbands?
These are tough topics! But isn’t God good to tell us the answer to our questions? Now, to put it into practice!