(Originally posted on 07-08-2010)
Your husband will never know how much he can love you until he respects you. “Commanding” respect is an art for every woman to learn.
My book, Submission is not Silence, is dedicated to the pursuit of wisdom for women and is taken from Scripture alone. It is hopefully a true interpretation of the role of women as God portrayed it.
The Bible has the original message of equality to women. It is obliterated from mainstream culture today. If every woman understood how her significance plays out in Scripture, she would “step onto the right path,” find clear vision and understand her value.
Scripture offers women a personal “handbook” of wisdom: it is written directly to her. With this handbook and the confidence it brings, every person in her “world,” including husband and children benefit. And beyond this influential role there is an adventure of self discovery.
Her innate gifts are needed. Beside her precious “little responsibilities,” (her children) and her husband, there is very likely more for her to prepare for and to accomplish. Feminism didn’t get it when they thought the message of the Bible relegated women to second class; and they rejected it. Yet it appears they were not completely wrong as through centuries misguided men teaching in the Church did control and disrespect women. Yet the Bible never has!
Too often the topic of submission taught in the Church is as if that is all a woman needs to know about marriage. As a result, women have been hindered from growing whole. Instinctively they know there is something wrong in the simplistic way this doctrine is presented. And when the Bible is used to teach that good wives and mothers stay at home (only) as “keepers at home” does it mean to stay behind four walls … for how many years?
Ponder this: Every female, as every male, is created in the image of God and given dominion over the earth together. The creation of male and female in His image infers difference, and what “part” of the image of God is more significant, or less? “And God said, “Let us make man (mankind) in our image, after our likeness: and let them [emphasis mine] have dominion …over all the earth…” Gen.1:26
There is good philosophy to be gleaned from the wisdom of the Bible; it ignites vision and hope. It works like a miracle giving knowledge, assurance and encouragement as a woman becomes her best self. With its positive guidance she looks to God, then inward to discover her unique gifts and calling.
The word of God is to both: to men and women. When we know it is spoken to us, the freedom and wisdom and hope and inspiration in its message can be taken personally. “Wisdom cries without; she utters her voice in the streets.” Pro 1:20. [And isn‘t it interesting that in Scripture wisdom is personified as female?]
My hope is that the Church and women will grow to understand the power of the female role. She is created in the image of God with all the mind power, perspective and potential of men, but an opposite, counterpart. If she delves into serious questions, to understand for herself from Scripture, she will find answers. Her answers will be unique, fitting her life and at the same moment a foundation solid and sure. Her husband will only be more charmed by the intelligent, respectful woman at his side. He will be helped in his own quest for his destiny by a wise wife. A confident, wise woman will “speak the truth in love;” [sometimes even if he doesn’t want to hear it.]
Every woman is created in the image of God. It is a gift that infers power, freedom and purpose: As a woman you are a reflection of God, not merely of your heritage, upbringing, status, your education, family, not even your husband. You are created in God’s image and not your husband’s. With your own individuality, uniqueness and initiative you are free to go in the direction you choose: wisdom is one of those choices.
“Every wise woman builds her house, but the foolish plucks it down with her hands.” [Pro 14:1] Herein lies your power: either build a strong “household” (set it up surely) or (with that same innate power) “tear your house apart.” Self centeredness and a corrupt philosophy do that thoroughly.
Jesus said, “If the Son makes you free, you are free indeed.” Free to think what you think; free to ponder the path of your feet; free to build your life on wisdom, or destroy your chances with foolishness. This is the freedom and power that lies within you … because God Himself gave it you.