March 12, 2013

Contention= Castration

"It is better to live in a desert land, then with a contentious and vexing woman." 
Proverbs 21:19

****This is just a small dabbling in the issue of marriage, submission, wives, etc. I know the topic runs very deep and with the Lord's help, I hope to submerge deeper in it. For now, this is what He has given me. 

Last week we surprised our clan with a trip to Disney World!!! Yep-- 7 days, 6 nights, two 4-hour flights, 3 suitcases, 20+ shuttle rides, 4 parks, and slumber in a Tow Mater bed with 3 Caney boys. While it wasn't vacation, per say, it was magical and amazing time together.
By the end of the first park day, Michael and I realized two things we were going to get a kick out of from the trip:
1. The awesomeness that is Asian Fashion. And I say that with much love. Those girls know how to rock some patterns & print pairings.
2. People Watching at it's best. People come from all over the world to visit the Mouse. There were times when everyone around us was from another country. We loved it! We loved watching families interact and play together. We enjoyed watching how and what others eat.

By about day 3, I really started paying close attention to how spouses would interact with each other. While Disney is the the most magical place on earth-- the crowds, small children, heat, lines, etc. can really make people show their sin. I noticed how people would snap at each other in an instant (guilty) and how husband and wives would speak to one another.

One particular day, we had just walked off a ride at Animal Kingdom. There was a family from the UK  with 3 children, similar in ages to my 3. The wife was, as say in our house, 'giving him the business'. She was ranting and raving and shaking her finger to her husband like he was a dog who just pooed on the carpet. "I've been stuck here with a baby in the stroller all week and I am just flat out sick of it. I'm sick of it and I'm tired of it. You need to ......", she ranted on and on with a thick british accent.  I'm pretty sure there was a little foot stomping like a 3 year old who doesn't get his way. She looked at her husband, her man who is supposed to be her champion, with disgust like he was gum on the bottom of her shoe. I looked at the poor man who was being reduced to nothing.  He looked crushed. He looked so disheartened. He looked as if she just just castrated him and then handed his 'jewels' on a paper plate.  He had his shoulders shrugged and his hands up in surrendur saying  over and over "You're right. Yes, dear."  I felt so bad for the man. I pointed out hte situation to Michael and told him that I just wanted to go give that husband a hug and tell him it was okay.  Of course, being the broken sinner that I am, in my head I start judging the man-slaying she-dragon that I saw this woman to be.  Judge away I did.

Fast forward to the next day, our last day of magic. The big boys were off to ride Pirates of the Carribean and Knox had just fallen sound asleep in the stroller. I sat on a bench and caught up on my people watching while I waited.  A mom, dad, and toddler walked up and sat near me; a hispanic family this time.  They sat and started talking about what they wanted to do next. The man started to speak and she immediately cut him off and started in, 'giving him the business'.  She started blurting out orders "you need to _________, you need to stop ___________, I can't believe you ___________. I told you____________" and on and on and on with a little Latina neck snap in between each order. This poor man just sat there and accepted the orders without question.  That daddy scooped up his 'jewels' and his little boy and pressed on like nothing had happened. Once they walked away, I got one of those nice little Holy Spirit gut punches. He was lovingly reminding me that I have the same tendencies as these women I had been noticing. Not all the time, but it had happened. And early in our marriage, it happened often. I had apologized for it before but I felt the need to apologize again.
That day when we got back for our rest time at the resort, I immediately repented to my husband for speaking to him that way and I prayed that I would be slow to do it again.

So ladies, how are you speaking to your bridegroom, your Prince, your man?? Are you controlling?  Are you contentious?  Do you correct your husband? Do you feel like it's your job to point out things he does wrong?   There was a time in our marriage when I was much more like these women than I am now. I wanted control and I wanted Michael to fix all my problems. I was looking for a personal Savior. Instead of looking for fullness and joy in my Heavenly mate Jesus, I was looking to my earthly mate to fix everything.
Our men are to be our champions, our dragon slayers, our fighters. My husband loves epic moves like Troy, 300, and Gladiator. I like to think of him as my Achilles (Brad Pitt's character) headed out every day to fight wars then to return to me as his soft spot to rest.  My heart's desire is to patch up his battle wounds from the office and build him up so that he can go after another day to provide for our family. In Genesis, God created man first in His image, then he created us in man's image to be a helper, not a fighter. How are our men ever supposed to lead and fill their divine roll if we are not a helpmate to them? I am not perfect in this role, none of us are. I thought it necessary to point out the geographic origin of the women I listed above, not to be stereotypical in any way, but rather to point out that this is a global problem. Women are castrating their men every day, in public and in front of their children.

Lord, I pray for marriages right now. I pray for wives who are mean, hurtful, and slanderous to their husbands. I pray that you would open their eyes to the hurt they are causing their men. Lovingly give them wisdom Father. Give them a desire to love and serve their husbands. Help husbands stand strong and not fear rejection or cruelty from their wives. Lord give our men softness in their heart to graciously accept repentace from their wives and give those wives a softness in their hearts to allow their men to lead. I pray that women would seek your face first Lord for fullness and joy so that they may be a place of comfort rather than content for their husbands.