Wives, obey your own husbands. In doing this, you obey the Lord. For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church…As the church is to obey Christ, wives are to obey their own husbands in everything. Ephesians 5:22-24 (NLV)
My family and close friends, they’d probably say I’m stubborn or hardheaded. But I like independent better, don’t you?
It’s a much more pleasant spin on what can be a downright dreadful and difficult topic, submission.
Being the good Christian girl I am, I’ve heard all the scriptures and sermons about submitting many, many times.
But that does nothing to stop the automatic eye rolls or slow the “ain’t nobody going to tell me what to do” chorus that quickly arises in my heart and my head.
For years the Holy Spirit worked to soften my heart on the issue but I always shrugged it off.
Single. In a committed relationship. Engaged. You name it. I remained defiant. Submission was just not my thing.
If any of this feels familiar, then keep reading my sister. You’re not alone!
For many women, submission is a constant battle and a very real struggle.
We yearn to be like the model wife etched in the pages of Proverbs 31. Yet her example illuminates the far divide between who we are today and who we some day hope to be.
So how do we bridge the gap between what society and our sinful nature (blame Eve) tells us, versus what the Word of God says? How do we develop a new mindset towards submission?
The answer is simple, but you may not like it. The answer is to start submitting.
Submit to God. Submit to your church leaders. Submit to your parents (even as an adult). Submit to every authority figure in your life, even the ones you may not like or agree with.
Submission is an act of obedience.
As we read in our key verses in Ephesians 5:22-24, there isn’t much wiggle room in God’s instructions. Wives are expected to submit to their husbands, in EVERYTHING, as an act of obedience unto God.
But isn’t that degrading to us women? And won’t it leave us open to being abused or controlled?
This is why it’s so important to involve God in your relationships, even in the dating and courtship stage.
There are some men who will wrongfully misuse their authority, but with God’s protection He will pair you with a man who has a heart to uphold God’s standards on how husbands should love their wives.
And what if we get married and my husband gets it wrong sometimes?
We still have to be obedient to God’s Word and let God be the judge of our husband’s actions. The Holy Spirit will convict and change him far better than our attitudes, silent protest, or flat-out rebellion.
(Of course, God does not sanction any type of abusive relationship. If you find yourself in a relationship or marriage that is either physically, emotionally, or sexually abusive, you need to seek the immediate counsel of the leadership at your local Church and from a trained professional.)
Submission may not be easy, but it’s not impossible. Like any habit or behavior, it takes intentional effort to cultivate and grow.
It means choosing to do things God’s way and not how you feel in that moment.
Submission means placing our trust in God that even in our most vulnerable state, He will always protect his daughters. And that sweet friend, that should make things a little less dreadful and a little less difficult.
Proverbs 14:1 (NLT) “A wise woman builds her home, but a foolish woman tears it down with her own hands.”
Colossians 3:18 (NLT) “Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting for those who belong to the Lord.”
1 Peter 3:1-2 (GNT) “In the same way you wives must submit yourselves to your husbands, so that if any of them do not believe God’s word, your conduct will win them over to believe. It will not be necessary for you to say a word, because they will see how pure and reverent your conduct is.”