Sunday, February 19, 2017

Getting My Body Back




A very vivid memory from my childhood often comes back to me . . .  my Mom in the kitchen, busy with something, and me wrapping my little girl arms around her soft waist--the love that I felt for my Mom and the certain knowing that she was there for me, that she loved me and constantly gave all of herself to raise me and my sisters. 

Wrapping my arms around that waist that had given--had been stretched and used and worn from giving life to us, to me--her beautiful motherly body that was not tight and firm and toned. 

Something that has had a great effect upon me in my own life has been the way in which my Mom gave everything towards raising her children and walking transparently before the Lord. 

Her devotion to Him came first--I remember her always with her Bible in the morning having her quiet time and seeking the Lord throughout her day, even though it was busy with children. 



And something that had a profound effect upon me was that my Mom's focus was not on her outward appearance, but on her inward relationship to the Lord. This didn't mean that she didn't dress attractively or wear makeup or exercise--my Mom maintained a neat and feminine appearance and exercised when she could. But her focus day in and day out was in giving herself in raising my sisters and I to know and to love the Lord. The other things were secondary and she would quickly forfeit them if it was a choice between her children or her appearance, even to the point of not buying herself new clothing for lengths of time so that she could afford to send us to a Christian school. 

My Mom's focus was on the spiritual and this played into every area of her life. I watched that kind of example growing up. 

I have a personality that craves order and discipline. It's the way that the Lord made me and He has used that for good in my life. But at times, if I am not watchful, it can become a distraction from that deeper more intimate walk with the Lord that my heart truly craves. 

For this reason, I have been very careful in the past with what I ate and making sure that I exercised regularly. I love to walk and so this was an almost daily part of my life, especially before I had children. I consumed broccoli religiously and ate in an otherwise extremely healthy way. 

And then I had children . . . and as anyone who has had children knows, the body goes through extreme changes, both physically and emotionally. 



Both of my births were difficult. I experienced extreme tearing during my first birth and faced a long healing process. My second birth which I chose to do naturally without pain medication took a toll on my body (looking back on that experience I would have chosen to do things differently now, but that is another blog post!) My son was born face down--in posterior position (in the Lord's mercy I delivered him without having a C-section) but my body was physically "broken." Again, I faced a long healing process and couldn't get my body back to normal.

And so, with a "broken" body, I faced caring for two little ones, 18 months apart. 

I struggled. And I just couldn't seem to get my body back into that same pattern of order and discipline that I had maintained before having babies. 

I was nursing, I was weak to the point where I struggled to pick myself up from the floor when I was sitting down with my children. 

And I felt frustrated at times--honestly--frustrated that I just couldn't get my body back--just couldn't fit into my jeans that I wore before I had children. Frustrated that I just couldn't seem to get it under control.

I, me, my body. 

Until the Lord spoke to me, quietly at first, and then with increasing strength--

My work was to focus on the two tiny souls He had given me--to raise to nurture, to love, to enjoy--to train up in His ways.

My work, as He spoke to me strongly one night, was to feed His sheep, and for me, this is to teach my two precious little ones, Deborah and Elisha, to know and to love Him. 

My focus in some ways needed to shift. 

And what I am not saying is that one shouldn't live a disciplined life, exercise, eat healthily, and take care of one's physical body. Our Pastor illustrated this beautifully in a recent sermon--he said that when we place the Lord first, when He is all in all to us, everything else falls into its proper order and place--in other words, through seeking His kingdom first, everything else will be added . . . when we place Him first, everything else falls into place. 

This way of living brings freedom . . . 

The Lord, and it is difficult to describe this completely, but a transformation took place in my heart at one point, replaced my natural motherly care and general love for my children (which I believe that every mother has) with a deep, strong, spiritual love for them. I cannot describe this, but He did. And it has been like a beautiful flower growing in my heart--I love them spiritually and I want them to know Him. 

This has cost me my body. 

The natural part of mothering in childbirth has cost me my body--my body will never look the same again--and it doesn't have to--who are we to hold on to this physical body in a way that rebels against any change to it? 

Are stretch marks and scars really the enemy? Do we need to stress and fuss and fume and desperately grasp at trying everything possible--every trick, gimmick, and exercise technique to get our body back? Again, I am not at all saying that it is wrong to exercise after we have children (I still enjoy walking, only now I do it with my children!)--what I am trying to say is that when getting our body back becomes the focus, we have lost something of spiritual significance--the willingness to give even if it means that we can't maintain the "perfect" body. The focus is "off" when we cling to the notion that we need to be a certain weight or a certain size in order to be content instead of resting in the Lord and concentrating on His present will for our lives. Perhaps the real enemy is holding onto something that we need to be willing to let go of. 



Our body is given in order to give it back--because it always comes down to surrender--whether or not we are willing to give something lesser for the greater--just as Jesus did. 

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich. II Corinthians 8:9 NKJV

To give back spiritually --we give our body spiritually when we sacrifice what we could have had in order to give to another--a "perfect" body for the stretches and scars of motherhood, our time, our passions, our lives--for the life of another--for the lives of little ones, for the Lord's sake. 

There is a character  in one of my sister's novels, The House of Mercy who would have been physically handsome except for the fact that his face bears a garish scar. He is one of my favorite characters, even more than the hero in that novel. A deeply sensitive man, he marries a woman who became pregnant out of wedlock and takes her child as his own. He is a beautiful example of Christ-like love and his face and very life bear deep sorrows, wounds and scars. 

Sometimes scars, imperfections, can be things of great beauty--can actually draw rather than repel. 

Jesus was scarred--He bore the scars of the nail prints in His hands--nail prints of love and evidence of a body broken. Broken for us. His body was used for our benefit. We follow His example when we give our bodies for the sake of our children, or even for the sake of spiritual children, such as missionaries whose bodies have been broken down by years of fasting and toil and ministry. It is worth it



I remember hugging my Mom's waist, her selfless, Christ-like giving and I remember that ancient truth that burns in the heart when we embrace it--we receive when we give. We possess when we let go. He who seeks to save his life will lose it but he who loses his life for My sake will truly possess it. 

And this is how I have gotten my body back. 



You might find me on these link-ups:


Strangers and Pilgrims on EarthInspire Me MondayLiteracy Musing MondaysThe Modest MomWhat Joy is Mine, Mom's the Word, Rich Faith Rising, Mom's Morning Coffee, Raising Homemakers, Classical HomemakingA Wise Woman Builds Her Home, Woman to Woman Ministries,  Testimony TuesdayTell His Story, Women With Intention WednesdaysMessy Marriage,  Graced Simplicity, Imparting Grace, Thought Provoking ThursdaySoul SurvivalGood Morning MondaysThe Weekend BrewCounting My BlessingsThe HomeAcre Hop, Mommy Moments Link UpGrace and Truth LinkupFaith Filled FridayTell It To Me TuesdaysSHINE Blog HopTGI Saturdays Blog HopRaRaLinkupWord of God SpeakBooknificent ThursdayLiving Proverbs 31Sharing His Beauty Blog LinkupCoffee For Your Heart Weekly LinkUpYou're the Star Blog HopHomesteader HopFresh Market FridayHeart Encouragement Thursday Sitting Among Friends Blog Party

Sunday, February 5, 2017

A Romantic Giveaway!!!

Until the will and the affections are brought under the authority of Christ, we have not begun to understand, let alone accept, His Lordship. The Cross, as it enters the love life, will reveal the heart’s truth.
~Elisabeth Elliot

In the spirit of Valentine's Day and to close my blog series on Marriage, I am so excited to host . . . 
A Romantic Giveaway! 
💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗


This is something that I've been looking forward to for a long time 😊. I've been gathering together some resources and fun "romantic" items that I hope you'll enjoy and including them as part of the giveaway. Please feel free to share about this giveaway with your friends; let's "spread the love." (Haha; my attempt to joke :-)). 💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💕💗


If you are new to this blog, or haven't read my Marriage Series blog posts and would like to, you can find them here--

Introduction HERE,
Part 1 HERE  
Part 2 HERE 
Part 3 HERE
Part 4 HERE
Part 5 HERE
Part 6 HERE





I hope and pray that this giveaway would bless someone and that the Lord Jesus would lead each of us into a deeper and deeper love for Him. 

Here's what it includes:

  • A paperback copy of Ravi Zacharias' book I, Isaac, Take Thee, Rebekah (this is a wonderful, encouraging book on this topic)
  • The DVD, Old Fashioned  (you can read my review HERE) :-)
  • A very lovely lace scarf (this reminded me of Anne of Green Gables :-)). 
  • "I have loved you with an everlasting love" rose mug. 
  • Beautiful rose and pearl earrings  (well, I think so!)


Please enter the giveaway by using the Rafflecopter form below; it is very easy to use. 

The Lord bless each one of you and cause the light of His great love to brighten your path. 

*Giveaway open to residents of the continental United States for shipping reasons. 





You might find me on these link-ups:


Strangers and Pilgrims on EarthInspire Me MondayLiteracy Musing MondaysThe Modest MomWhat Joy is Mine, A Mama's Story, Mom's the Word, Rich Faith Rising, Cornerstone Confessions, Mom's Morning Coffee, Raising Homemakers, Classical HomemakingA Wise Woman Builds Her Home, Woman to Woman Ministries,  Testimony TuesdayTell His Story, Women With Intention WednesdaysMessy Marriage,  Graced Simplicity, Children Are A Blessing, Imparting Grace, Thought Provoking ThursdaySoul SurvivalGood Morning MondaysThe Weekend BrewCounting My BlessingsThe HomeAcre Hop, Mommy Moments Link UpGrace and Truth LinkupFaith Filled FridayTell It To Me TuesdaysSHINE Blog HopTGI Saturdays Blog HopRaRaLinkupWord of God SpeakBooknificent ThursdayLiving Proverbs 31Sharing His Beauty Blog LinkupCoffee For Your Heart Weekly LinkUpYou're the Star Blog HopHomesteader HopFresh Market FridayHeart Encouragement Thursday Sitting Among Friends Blog Party

Sunday, January 29, 2017

A Knife Dipped in Blood~~The Deadly Peril of Pornography

This post is part of a series of posts on marriage/relationships. I pray that this "mini-series" would be a blessing to you! Please feel free to share any of your own thoughts in the comments; I would love to hear them! 


If you are new to this series, you can find the Introduction HERE, Part 1 HERE , Part 2 HERE, Part 3 HERE, Part 4 HERE., and Part 5 HERE.

Please Note: This post contains adult material that is not suitable for children. 


We use a most unfortunate idiom when we say, of a lustful man prowling the streets, that he “wants a woman.” Strictly speaking, a woman is just what he does not want.
He wants a pleasure for which a woman happens to be the necessary piece of apparatus. How much he cares about the woman as such may be gauged by his attitude to her five minutes after fruition (one does not keep the carton after one has smoked the cigarettes).
Now Eros makes a man really want, not a woman, but one particular woman. In some mysterious but quite indisputable fashion the lover desires the Beloved herself, not the pleasure she can give.
~C.S. Lewis
Lust is a poor, weak, whimpering, whispering thing compared with that richness and energy of desire which will arise when lust has been killed.
~C.S. Lewis

I can still remember a sermon I heard years ago from Dr. Charles Swindoll. I was listening to the local Christian radio station in the car and I had pulled into the driveway. He was talking about the danger of pornography. An image that he used cut into my soul in a way that made me shudder. I don't remember all of the specifics of the sermon, but one description stayed with me. He carefully depicted the way in which (I think that perhaps it was the Eskimos) would dip a knife in blood in order to kill a wolf. They would cover the blade in the scarlet substance, and then place the razor-sharp edge sticking up out of the snow. The wolf, hungry, would smell the blood and begin licking the knife. Eventually, as you can imagine, his own tongue would be cut and he would begin to lick his own blood without realizing it. In this way, he would feed on his own blood, ultimately bleeding to death and perishing in the bitter cold. 

Swindoll then went on to relate this story to the manner in which pornography slowly weakens and then kills the soul. 



Pornography. We think that it will feed us, satisfy us. But instead of nourishing, it actually accomplishes the opposite. It drains us of all that is true and pure and good. 

Sometimes it seems so innocent. A little taste here; a lick there. Until the stream begins to flow and we are strangling on our own blood. 

Pornography destroys. It crushes. We think that it is giving satisfaction, but it is really robbing us of that which is truly life-giving.

We live in a time when it is looked upon so lightly, laughed off, even--Oh, every man struggles with that--

But I believe that in not adopting a more serious attitude toward this sin, we weaken ourselves, we weaken our marriages, we weaken the church as a whole, and we become unfit for ministry in any way. 

We need to take pornography seriously. We need to kill lust in our lives before it kills us, before it kills our families, before it kills our souls and sears our conscience until it is dead. 



Our families are at stake. Our marriages are at stake. Our souls are at stake. 

You have heard that it was said to those of old,‘You shall not commit adultery.’But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell. (Matthew 5:27-29 NKJV)

 Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s. (I Corinthians 6:18-20 NKJV)

We may so weaken the voice of the Spirit in this area that we will be rendered spiritually useless. I believe that this happens in many men's lives (as well as women's) and this is one of the reasons that the Church is so powerless and ineffective today. 


These are three ways that I believe pornography damages and destroys and then ultimately kills the soul--I am sure that there are more--

It damages our marriages

Pornography kills romance. It deadens our own souls against the soul of our spouse. I know that some may disagree with me, but I believe that viewing pornography when one is married is quietly committing adultery against their partner. This is why the Bible exhorts us to "flee immorality." Because it is so grievously damaging. Besides hurting ourselves, it also wounds the ones we claim to love. The late Pastor Adrian Rogers said that once a man breaks trust with his wife in his marriage, it may take years to repair the breach because a woman's emotions are so sensitive. Many men feel that pornography is no big deal and that women just need to get over it. But I believe that it may be difficult even after the woman has genuinely forgiven her husband, to  easily "get over" her husband's actions. The sting of his deception and betrayal may remain for years and make it difficult for her to relate to her husband sexually or in other ways. This is one of the consequences of "soft" adultery. 

It damages our relationship with God

Pornography immediately places a barrier in terms of our relationship with God. The more that we view it and engage in practices associated with it, the more our hearts are hardened, our consciences are seared, and we deaden the voice of the Holy Spirit. 

It damages the church as a whole

Because we are weakened spiritually when we engage in viewing pornography, the church as a whole suffers. There is sin "in the camp," and so the church cannot go forward spiritually. I truly believe that this is one of the reasons for the weakness of the American church--unconfessed sin that is taken lightly and is causing our souls to rot in the blazing sun. Only true repentance and turning away from sin will bring cleansing and revival. 
~~~

Lust needs to be killed in our lives, not stroked gently, not hidden away and then taken back out, not ignored, but killed. 

Ultimately, feeding on lust shows that we are seeking satisfaction outside of Christ. We are discontent and that discontentment flows into the utter selfishness of taking that which promises to fill our deepest need. 

We are empty and so we seek a temporary fix. We fill our souls with poison and refuse the Great Physician who would heal us if we would only run to Him, run to the Self-Giving One who alone can satisfy us.

I speak mostly to men, but I know that there are also women who struggle in this area. 

I'd like to add a note here--the answer to a man's problem with pornography is not ultimately that his wife needs to fulfill him more sexually. It is true that a woman is biblically constrained  to join together with her husband (I Corinthians 7:3-5). It is also true that this becomes a joy when her husband treats her with gentleness and loves her as Christ loves the church and that it becomes a painful act of obedience when she is not treated that way. 

A man's problem with pornography is not ultimately the failing of his wife, but the failing of his own disobedience and failure to resist evil through the power of the Holy Spirit.



We need to take responsibility for our own actions and stop placing the blame on someone else--stop using someone else's perceived disobedience to give us an excuse to continue sinning. And we do this when we blame our wives (or husbands) for our sin when we feel that they are failing to fulfill us sexually. 

What we need is not an attitude of making excuses and of indulging the flesh, but an attitude of cutting off that which is causing us to sin. 

There is a scene in the movie Fireproof where the main character Caleb, uses a baseball bat to destroy his computer. He is struggling with pornography and realizes that he needs to get rid of that which is causing him to stumble.  His wife is not fulfilling him sexually (which he gives earlier as one of his excuses for looking at pornography). But then Caleb turns to the Lord in repentance and begins to treat his wife in a loving, sincere, and gentle way. It takes time because he has wounded her so deeply, but eventually his wife responds to him and their love is rekindled. 

There are times when we need to "cut off our hand," and nothing is too radical if it is causing our relationship with Jesus Christ to suffer and our soul to wither and die. 

Do you struggle with pornography? Repent, turn to the Lord and He will give you the strength to overcome it. 

I have read articles that talk about how the pornographic images that a man or woman sees may never be erased because of the chemicals that seeing these images triggers. 

I believe that this is true, hence the peril of exposing oneself to these images--but I also believe that the Lord is able to miraculously redeem all things and to remove our sins as far as the east is from the west. 

I believe that the Lord is able to refresh and restore marriages, hearts, and consciences that are seared when we turn to Him and turn away from that which is destroying our souls. He is able to redeem. He will redeem. 

So turn to Him. Turn away from the darkness and deception of self fulfillment and let your fulfillment be found in the Person of Jesus Christ. 

He is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all that we ask or think. He can cleanse and purify. And He will--to those who run to Him. 




.

This was a helpful article for further reading (clickable link).



You might find me on these link-ups:


Strangers and Pilgrims on EarthInspire Me MondayLiteracy Musing MondaysThe Modest MomWhat Joy is Mine, A Mama's Story, Mom's the Word, Rich Faith Rising, Cornerstone Confessions, Mom's Morning Coffee, Raising Homemakers, Classical HomemakingA Wise Woman Builds Her Home, Woman to Woman Ministries,  Testimony TuesdayTell His Story, Women With Intention WednesdaysMessy Marriage,  Graced Simplicity, Children Are A Blessing, Imparting Grace, Thought Provoking ThursdaySoul SurvivalGood Morning MondaysThe Weekend BrewCounting My BlessingsThe HomeAcre Hop, Mommy Moments Link UpGrace and Truth LinkupFaith Filled FridayTell It To Me TuesdaysSHINE Blog HopTGI Saturdays Blog HopRaRaLinkupWord of God SpeakBooknificent ThursdayLiving Proverbs 31Sharing His Beauty Blog LinkupCoffee For Your Heart Weekly LinkUpYou're the Star Blog HopHomesteader HopFresh Market FridayHeart Encouragement Thursday Sitting Among Friends Blog Party

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Monthly Book Giveaway~~The Pilgrim's Progress

Oh, I am so happy to continue these Monthly Book Giveaways! I had taken a break from them for awhile during a season of transition in my life but I am so excited to return to them now! I pray that they will bless you as they have blessed me. The only thing better than reading a good book is being able to share that book with another precious soul. :-)


And so, without further ado, this month's giveaway is for a copy of John Bunyan's The Pilgrim's Progress. This tremendous book has been used by the Lord in the hearts and lives of so many countless believers. Indeed, it is amazing how the Lord works His greatest beauty through times of trial and adversity. Bunyan wrote this book in prison, suffering for the Lord's sake, and its beautiful message still resonates with believers today on a worldwide level. 

Brief description of The Pilgrim's Progress (from CBD):

Once the most deeply cherished book in English-speaking households other than Bible itself, John Bunyan's The Pilgrim's Progress is the allegorical tale of Christian the pilgrim on his journey to the Celestial City. Along the way, Christian encounters both worthy companions and dreadful adversaries. Although this book was written more than three hundred years ago, this stirring spiritual narrative still bears the power to challenge and encourage readers on their own spiritual journeys.

Please enter the giveaway below and share about it with a friend! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

You might find me on these link-ups:


Strangers and Pilgrims on EarthInspire Me MondayLiteracy Musing MondaysThe Modest MomWhat Joy is Mine, A Mama's Story, Mom's the Word, Rich Faith Rising, Cornerstone Confessions, Mom's Morning Coffee, Raising Homemakers, Classical HomemakingA Wise Woman Builds Her Home, Woman to Woman Ministries,  Testimony TuesdayTell His Story, Women With Intention WednesdaysMessy Marriage,  Graced Simplicity, Children Are A Blessing, Imparting Grace, Thought Provoking ThursdaySoul SurvivalGood Morning MondaysThe Weekend BrewCounting My BlessingsThe HomeAcre Hop, Mommy Moments Link UpGrace and Truth LinkupFaith Filled FridayTell It To Me TuesdaysSHINE Blog HopTGI Saturdays Blog HopRaRaLinkupWord of God SpeakBooknificent ThursdayLiving Proverbs 31Sharing His Beauty Blog LinkupCoffee For Your Heart Weekly LinkUpYou're the Star Blog HopHomesteader HopFresh Market FridayHeart Encouragement Thursday Sitting Among Friends Blog Party

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Husbands of Blood--Strong Women and their Faithful God

Note: This post is part of a series of posts on marriage/relationships. I pray that this "mini-series" would be a blessing to you! Please feel free to share any of your own thoughts in the comments; I would love to hear them! 


If you are new to this series, you can find the Introduction HERE, Part 1 HERE , Part 2 HERE, Part 3 HERE, and Part 4 HERE

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

My sister burst through our front door, pug-in-arms, a smile on her face, rambling about a lesser-known woman in the Bible--one she'd been thinking about--Zipporah, the wife of Moses. 

Chattering on about strong women in the Bible (one of her favorites is Jael, bearer of the tent peg :-)) she stepped into my living room-- 

The conversation that ensued from her insights is what initially sparked this post. I needed direction for my marriage series. Her wisdom steered my thinking and helped me to focus my thoughts. 

Before I really delve into this post, I want to be clear about what "direction" I am coming from. I believe that a man is the head of his family under Christ. I believe in a traditional, Biblical view of manhood and womanhood. That men and women are equal under the headship and authority of Christ, but that both have their unique and distinct roles.

Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. (Ephesians 5:22-23)

But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God. Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonors his head. But every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head, for that is one and the same as if her head were shaved. For if a woman is not covered, let her also be shorn. But if it is shameful for a woman to be shorn or shaved, let her be covered. For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man. For man is not from woman, but woman from man. Nor was man created for the woman, but woman for the man.  For this reason the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels. Nevertheless, neither is man independent of woman, nor woman independent of man, in the Lord. For as woman came from man, even so man also comes through woman; but all things are from God.  (I Corinthians 11:3-12)


An understanding of that view helps to lay the foundation for this article. Because where I am taking these thoughts veers away from the usual direction that this flow of thinking leads. 

I want to provide three examples of strong women in the Bible and where their obedience led them and what that meant for their relationship toward their male counterpart in terms with their walk with their Heavenly Father. I want to apply their obedience to our lives today. 

Because the usual conclusion of a traditional view of male headship is that the man, ultimately, has the last word. Even if the wife disagrees, even if her husband is wrong, even if the husband is grossly sinning, the wife is to submit to his leadership and authority. 

I believe that this is an unbiblical strain of thinking when carried out in the individual lives of believing women who fear God. 

There are times when we do stay silent and pray. At times, the Spirit directs us in this way. And then there are times when we lovingly confront our husbands and our wisdom helps to turn them from a sinful or unwise path.  And finally there are times when directed by the Holy Spirit that we separate ourselves from the decisions of our husbands in order to obey a greater authority--our Father who is above all. 

We live in a devastatingly fallen world, where circumstances are not always "normal". 

And sometimes we are called to walk outside of the normal "box." 

Not in a spirit of rebellion, but in a spirit of utter and complete submission to God's authority, even when it might mean upsetting the boat and angering a husband who is on a path of sinful rebellion or explicit and continual disobedience. 



I think that it is important to remember that our husbands are not God. We love them, we honor them, we respect their position and authority, but ultimately they are not God--the ultimate Head. And obedience to His authority and wisdom should prevail in our lives. 

There are times when obeying God will mean that we "disobey" our husbands. It will cause us pain. It must be done extremely prayerfully. And it is Biblical. 

I want to explain this using three examples--these three strike me the most powerfully in Scripture, and I would encourage you to actually go to the texts and ask the Lord to reveal His wisdom through them to you--these are my own reflections and understanding of the passages. 
  • Abigail and Nabal~I Samuel 25 
The account of Abigail and Nabal has always fascinated me. If you aren't familiar with the story, I would encourage you to read it in full--that is so important to gaining a right understanding of the text. But the jist of the story is this: 

Abigail, a beautiful, wise woman (I Samuel 25:3) is married to a man named Nabal. Nabal, a very rich man, is described as surly, harsh, and ultimately lacking in wisdom. He pompously refuses to help David and his men, arrogantly ignoring David's request for provisions. David, who has helped and protected Nabal, is angered by Nabal's response. He determines to fight Nabal and his men, leaving no one alive. 

Abigail learns of what is transpiring. One of her servants tells her-

Look, David sent messengers from the wilderness to greet our master; and he reviled them. But the men were very good to us, and we were not hurt, nor did we miss anything as long as we accompanied them, when we were in the fields. They were a wall to us both by night and day, all the time we were with them keeping the sheep. Now therefore, know and consider what you will do, for harm is determined against our master and against all his household. For he is such a scoundrel that one cannot speak to him. (I Samuel 25;14-17)

Abigail then directly goes against the will of her husband in order to protect and save her household. She orders that her donkey be saddled up, provisions be brought to David and his men, and travels herself to explain the situation. 

In this way, she saves her household, prevents David from vengefully shedding blood, and gains the confidence and trust of David. 

Abigail is not afraid to call Nabal what he is in accordance with how he is acting--a fool (I Samuel 25:25). She explains her husband's stubbornness and pride to David unashamedly and without protecting her husband in any way--as her husband has consistently and arrogantly defied God without repentance. 

The Lord acted on behalf of Abigail. As the account goes, she returned home without telling Nabal what had happened until the next day, as he was drunk when she came home at night. 

The Lord struck Nabal and he died within 10 days. David ultimately asked Abigail to become his wife. One can only imagine the joy that Abigail experienced in this after being married to such a cruel and unrighteous man. 

Here, in the account of Abigail and Nabal, we see a godly woman responding to the foolish actions of her rebellious, unbelieving husband. There is absolutely no condemnation for Abigails's actions. It is clear that she acted wisely in accordance with God's will, even though her actions directly conflicted her husband's. Abigail acted independently of her husband's wishes in order to obey a greater authority when the situation called for it. 

  • Zipporah and Moses~Exodus 4:24-26
This is a short passage, so I'll include it here--

And it came to pass on the way, at the encampment, that the Lord met him and sought to kill him. Then Zipporah took a sharp stone and cut off the foreskin of her son and cast it at Moses’ feet, and said, “Surely you are a husband of blood to me!” So He let him go. Then she said, “You are a husband of blood!—because of the circumcision. Exodus 4:24-26

This is a story that I have honestly never given much thought to, until recently. But it is intriguing to me. Moses, a great man of God, in the midst of serving the Lord, had neglected a direct command of God to him and to the people of Israel. I believe, from Zipporah's response, that he was aware of it. Perhaps he was so busy with leading the children of Israel, that he had just put this "small" thing off. His son was not circumcised. Moses just hadn't gotten around to obeying that particular command. But in God's eyes, it was not a small matter--the text says that because of this act of disobedience, "the Lord met him and sought to kill him." Well!  Zipporah, wise woman that she was, took the initiative and circumcised her son immediately, throwing the foreskin at her husband's feet. This story makes me think that those Hebrew women meant business! If her husband wasn't going to obey the Lord, then she would assume the spiritual leadership in that situation at that time and do it herself. In actuality, she took on the role of priest in her action, as the priest was responsible for circumcision.

And so here we have Moses, a believing, disobedient husband--his wife acted independently of him when his disobedience would negatively affect the family. There are times when we may have to act apart from our husband when he is being spiritually lazy or disobedient so that our family is not compromised. 

Let me give a practical example here. Our husbands should be leading our families in prayer and devotions, but if they are not or will not or are complacent about doing it or do not do it consistently (and we have repeatedly asked them to do this), I believe that the wife should step in and fulfill this role where possible. The spiritual stability of the family depends upon it. This is a time where we should act independently of our husbands . 
  • Deborah and Barak~ Judges 4
This is obviously not a a situation that involves a husband and wife, rather a man and a woman interacting with one another. 

Reading the account of Deborah and Barak, one will see that Deborah was in a position of leadership; she was a judge in Israel. Barak, commander of the army was unwilling to lead (out of fear) his army to victory against Sisera. Deborah exhorts him to lead the army and he agrees, but only if Deborah will go with him. She agrees, but declares that there will be no honor in the victory for Barak because he would not obey without her. And so Deborah goes, fearlessly leading the Israelite army with Barak; she obtains the honor in the victory. 

This third example shows a weak man who would only obey if Deborah went with him. They switched roles in that instance, she being the leader, and he the support (opposite of the traditional way that the Lord intended). 

There are times when we must push our families forward  in the ways of the Lord when our husband is unwilling to lead and he will follow us as Barak did with Deborah. 


My conclusion from these Biblical passages is that there are times that we act independently of our husbands or of male leadership if it goes against the leadership of God. 

We do this not out of rebellion, or in a spirit of feministic independence but because we are accountable to a higher authority, and before Him one day every knee will bow. 

We do it in humility, we do it with His strength, we do it with dignity, we do it because we love Him. He will honor that costly obedience. And give all grace. 





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