Good morning, friends. I hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving yesterday. It has been a lovely week for us. I enjoy slow days, and we definitely have had a couple lately.
Now it is time for our last Let Me Be a Woman study on the blog. I hope you have enjoyed it, and possibly found a few “nuggets” to take along with you as encouragement as we seek to become women of noble character, with the Lord’s help, of course.
Chapter 47 speaks about the importance of being loyal to one’s husband. Ah, how important this is! When I was younger, I didn’t quite understand just how damaging it could be if I spoke negatively about my husband to anyone, really. If you are in an abusive situation, of course get help. But as far as the regular occasional disagreement goes, it far better for us to take it to God in prayer, instead of putting our husband in a negative light in front of others.
Even when our husbands fail, we can still be loyal. Our husbands need to know that they can count on us, and we are a “safe place” for them to confide in. As wives, this is one of the most important roles that we fill.
Chapter 48 is titled, “Love is Action.” Isn’t this the truth? We can say many niceties and even proclaim our love to another, but unless it is followed by action it is quite meaningless.
Love is more than a feeling. Feelings come and go. Love in marriage is a true commitment, a covenant made before God. Elisabeth writes, “The kind of love that makes marriage work is far more than feelings. Feelings are the least dependable things in the world. To build a marriage on that would be to build a house on sand. When you promise, in the wedding ceremony, to love, you are not promising how you expect to feel. You are promising a course of action which begins on your wedding day and goes on as long as you both live.”
The type of love that women are expected to give their husbands includes submission. “Paul never needed to command wives to love. Apparently he thought they would do that without his admonition. But he reminded them that their love was to take the form of submission. When in the course of daily life the love which they so naturally feel for their husbands is not sufficient for the wear and tear, the action then required is submission.” (p. 168)
I am so happy that these letters that Elisabeth sent to her daughter were published, aren’t you? The last chapter of this book speaks of love being a cross. It definitely is at times. But we must always remember that our relationship with our husband is a gift, and that the Lord (YHWH) may choose to remove it at any time. Above all else, we must view our relationship as an offering we can give back to Him.
At the end of the chapter, Elisabeth writes, “You can’t talk about the idea of equality and the idea of self-giving in the same breath. You can talk about partnership, but it is the partnership of the dance. If two people agree to dance together they agree to give and take, one to lead and one to follow. This is what a dance is. Insistence that both lead means there won’t be any dance. It is the woman’s delighted yielding to the man’s lead that gives him freedom. It is the man’s willingness to take the lead that gives her freedom. Acceptance of their respective positions frees them both and whirls them into joy.”
May we always remember this, friends. Now it’s time for this little book to live on my bookshelf, but I believe I will most definitely come back to it for encouragement from time to time.
I hope you have a lovely weekend with your families. Blessings!
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.”
Psalms 91:2 NKJV