Devotionals

The Ephesians 5 Wife
9/9/2002 12:00:01 AM by: Charlotte S. Snead

Ephesians 5: 33b AMP: . . . and let the wife see that she respects and reverences her husband—that she reverences her husband—that she notices him, regards him, honors him. Prefers him, venerates and esteems him; that she defers to him, praises him, and loves and admires him exceedingly.

Titus tells the older women to teach the younger women how to love their husbands, and I have done a pretty good job of teaching you the physical aspects of that, but First are the spiritual aspects.

  • When I was believing for Joe, I read Proverbs every day and memorized the last verses of chapter 31 about the role of a woman.
  • When my daughter was in grad school, she helped with the Moppets and listened to the moms criticize their husbands non-stop. Raw from her abandonment and betrayal, she wanted to slap them for their ingratitude—all she wanted was a faithful man, just a provider would have been nice, for she now had to be a mother while being a primary provider.

So, as we pause to reflect on Ephesians 5, let us first repent of our sin of ingratitude! Take a moment, if you will, to jot down a few things about your husband that you admire, the reasons you fell in love with him..      .   .   .   .   .   .

Now, reflect upon the calling you have as MOPS leaders. Every leader has the fearful responsibility of seeing herself reproduced in the lives of the ones she leads—have you ever heard your children repeat things you wish they had never heard you say? Our MOPS women are learning how to be wives and mothers; do you want them to replicate you?

I realize we are all struggling along to allow God to conform us to the image of Christ, and  we are growing in grace and healed in the going. None of us is there yet. . . but we should all be pressing toward the mark!

Now, also recognize that is where your husbands are, too, and cut them some slack. (Unless your husband cannot even hope to be pressing on to perfection until he is in relationship with the One Who makes us perfect. These wives need to covered with prayer, for they are in spiritual warfare for the soul of her husband. The spiritual forces of wickedness attack her to prevent his entering into the Promised Land.) I went to church for ten years before Joe returned to the teachings he heard as a youth, and the more I pressed into God, the more difficult it was at home. (It will get worse before it gets better!)

Ephesians 5 is not asking us to submit to ungodliness—can any of us here truly say our husbands are asking us to do that? I have had wives of unbelievers tell me their husbands did want them to do ungodly things, and no one should obey man over God. The Church needs to rescue such women and their children!

But, admit it now, most of the things we complain about are not those things that will compromise our right standing with God, are they?

If they are even legitimate:

  • Can we forgive as we want God to forgive us?
  • Can we crucify our flesh, laying our lives down for the brethren?
  • Are we failing to recognize the demands of their role as provider?
  • Are we meeting their needs, not only in bed, but also for admiration, respect?
  • Are we reaping what we are sowing, i.e. disrespect, thoughtlessness, coldness—I remember telling Joe I needed him to touch me, to hug me, to hold me, and he responded: it is tough to hug a porcupine! Amen

Finally, let us remember that in God’s Kingdom the fine art of submission is required.

  • Not laying down our gifts and abandoning our calling.
  • Not slavish obedience to ungodliness.
  • Not thoughtless, blind stupidity.

Rather:

  • Recognizing and truly accepting the difference in Biblical roles
  • Accepting his and our position in the Kingdom with thankfulness and joy (if you think you want his role, ask my daughter.)
  • Prayerfully helping him to fulfill his calling
  • Realizing that God is perfecting us as we walk the path He has given us.

And Now, Father, we come to you, recognizing that as usual, we have made a mess of things. How easy it is, God to muddle through life. But we want to do better. We want to be the wives and mothers you have called us to be. And now you have called us to be leaders, Oh, God, help us! How can we lead others when we need so much help from You? But You don’t make mistakes, so here we are. I do not understand, Jesus, how You could have left your great work of calling mankind to Yourself in such untrustworthy hands. I hate to think that we are all You have. I guess You have a great sense of humor—and Great Faith. You believe in us a whole lot more than we do ourselves. So we throw ourselves on Your mercy, asking that You forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Give us grateful hearts, our Father. Let us bless our husbands and not drain them. Let us convey joy to our ladies even when it costs our bleeding, dying man of flesh. We ask that what they see will be You, and not us. Help us to be more God-focused, and more other-focused, than self-focused. Help us to recognize that as we serve our husbands and children and the women who come to MOPS, we are doing it to You. You see it, even our humblest service, You honor it, and our reward is inevitable, for You promised it. In Jesus’ Name.

 


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