Hi Ladies! Welcome to week #8 of Women Living Well's Completing Him Challenge.
This week's challenge is something that I have REALLY been working on since we have gotten married last year. RESPECT! I did a challenge a while back - The 14 Day Love and Respect Challenge. I learned so much through doing that challenge. I learned that women need love and men need respect. It is amazing how differently our needs are met. The pre married Michelle thought that people earned respect. Well, people do. My husband doesn't have to. If I don't respect him, why did I marry him? God commands us to respect our husbands. This was the reading at our wedding. We have it printed out on our fridge at home as a constant reminder -
"Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives, be subject to your husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body and is himself its Savior. As the church is subject to Christ, so let wives also be subject in everything to their husbands. Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such things, that she might be holy and without blemish. Even so husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. he who loves his wife loves himself. For no man ever hates his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined with his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. this mystery is a profound one, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church; however, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband." Ephesians 5:1-2, 21-33
I think it is difficult for women of our generation to totally submit to and respect our husbands. We are taught from an early age that we can have it all - smarts, careers, husbands, children...and that we matter. We don't need a man - we can stand on our own. Get our own education, provide for ourselves, make our own life decisions - we are powerful and important. We matter. This is how I felt, especially after college. I was single and empowered. I lived alone for the first time in my life. It was glorious. I was able to be selfish - why not, it was just me! Then I met a wonderful guy that I respected and that respected me because I was that empowered young woman. He respected that I was not needy and could take care of myself. He admired that I was self sufficient. Then, we got married. All of a sudden, it wasn't just me looking out for myself - I had to shift over to him looking out for me. I used to make all the decisions - where would I live? How much money would I spend? What kind of car would I like? What electrical provider is best? Should I switch? Now, HE makes the decisions. We talk about them, but, ultimately, he's the boss and I respect his decisions (outwardly anyway, I am working on the inwardly part). The first 6 months or so of our marriage were are very difficult transition for me, and I imagine they are for some other women too. Especially those women that have lived alone and made their own lives post college. I'm getting better though. Once I realized that I had to let it go, and realized that he had to lead our little family, and that I had to respect his decisions, I knew I had to do something. But what? So, I prayed. I prayed that God would make me happy with being a little more meek and respectful, and to not question his decisions. And, it's working. God is great! But, I have a feeling that this is something that will take me awhile to totally adopt. I'm a work in progress :)
Here is our challenge for this week - take some time to assess your husband's respect-o-meter. Ask him what sort of things you do that make him feel disrespected and respected. Work on weeding out disrespectful thoughts and attitudes and exchanging them for respectful ones.
I love this! As I have learned throughout the other challenges in this series - it's important to ASK hubby about things. I assume too much. I'm anxious to see what he tells me.
I hope you have a great week!