This post has been a few weeks in the making. It's about my husband, Special K.
Lately God has brought to my attention what an amazing husband I have. Almost every day. Have I mentioned I have the best husband.ever? Almost every time I am with another females, group of females, or even when I am on some internet groups I get an amazing awareness about how blessed and thankful that I am to have my Special K. Seriously, he is the best husband. No one else can hold a candle to my man. Every time God brings it to the forefront of my mind I usually cannot brag because I don't want to hurt the person who I am talking with or listening to. I don't want them to make it feel like I am rubbing it in when they're already upset and confiding in me. It does help me to constantly tell Kevin how awesome he is, how proud I am that he works so hard and how much I love him- his love language is words of affirmation so God has given me these wonderful opportunities to praise my husband's good works. Usually I get divinely aware that Kevin is awesome when I am with a group of women and they are talking about how their husbands "make" them work, get mad at them for spending money, tell them what a terrible job they're doing cleaning, or they don't care about anything their wife is passionate about, they belittle their wife's choices, won't "let" them homeschool, rule with an iron fist, don't brush kids teeth, change diapers, or bathe kids, lots of these men don't go to church, or don't pray with their wives (and they certainly aren't spiritual leaders in the home), some of my friends aren't sure their husbands are even saved.
It makes me so sad to see all these (mostly) Christian women having these issues. What happened to the family unit? I am not sure what the problem or the solution is but I think what has worked for Special K and I to have a happy marriage and home is that we got to know our biblical roles for our gender and fell into them. It wouldn't have worked if I made the choice to fulfill my role and Special K didn't OR if Special K decided to fulfill his roll and I wouldn't. It was a joint and mutual decision. One we made in unity. I think that's the only way it could have worked for us. It's probably a little bit of an old fashioned approach to life and marriage but it works so well. Following the Bible and God's principles are awesome! That outdated old fashioned book actually has something that could save a marriage in it. Special K and I have been married for 11 years and 4 months. Our marriage has never been better, we have a better marriage than anyone I know (well maybe not my parents). I think that the feminist movement has perhaps helped tare the traditional family up. Women think it's inferior to do the rolls they were called to do and men aren't standing up to be the men, fathers and husbands that they were called to do. I do believe that men and women are equal in God's eyes because God designed both men and women in His own image (Genesis 1:26-27). We are equally in need of His saving grace (because we all fall short of the glory of God). God said that it wasn't good for a man to be alone (Genesis 2:18). The Bible does say that man has dominion over every living thing though (Genesis 1:28) and man did come first and women came out of man's side...why his side? I am not sure but I can only guess that we came out of his side because we're to be "beside" him, close to his heart and equal to him. Maybe because we're the weaker vessel (1 Peter 3:7) and our men need to protect us. Man came first so that he could be our spiritual leader and authority and the man is also under authority of God (1 Corinthians 11:3 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.). I really like Kevin being the authority in our home. I feel good that the big decisions aren't totally on my shoulders, I feel great about him paying our bills and managing our money, I like asking him his opinion on things and hearing his perspective. I think the security that I feel with him being the head is wonderful. I think he feels great making these choices for our family, it makes him feel like he's fulfilling his roll as the cultivator. He doesn't make all decisions with an iron fist and without asking me and coming to me for my opinion...he acknowledges that God has created me to be his helper (Genesis 2:18).
I LOVE that Speciak K is the spiritual leader of our home. I love it when he prays with me, reads the Bible to me every night and when he teaches our kids about God. I love it when someone sins in our home and he brings up a verse or a Bible story or when we do something for others how he brings up a story about how Jesus served others and we were called to be servants to others and put others above ourselves. Besides all the leadership God also calls the man to love his wife like Christ loved the church and He (Jesus) gave Himself for her (Ephesians 5:25)...skip down to verse 28-29 and it says So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord the church. God wants him to be more concerned about humility, loving self sacrifice, responsibility, and accountability. Men are called to love their wives like Christ loves the church! Christ DIED for the church, this means that men should die to their flesh and serve their wives as Jesus Christ came to die to his flesh and serve US! God has clearly assigned us two very different rolls. Both very important. Both complementing each other. Special K comes home from working with a smile, kisses me, looks around at our possibly trashed house, the messy kids that are half clothed...he washed his hands and starts to help- either with dinner, with bathing kids, brushing teeth, changing diapers, doing laundry, dishes, or with other household chores. I know it is my job to do all of those things- and I primarily do, but he has NO issues doing everything that I do. In fact he is a very hands on dad and when he's home he thinks it is a privilege to take care of the kids and he does it as much or more than I do..he changes diapers, brushes teeth, gives baths, helps fixes plates, reads bedtime stories, prays with the kids, reads them the Bible, tucks them in, etc. He never mentions the peanuts that are spilled all over the floor, the sink full of dishes, the mountain of laundry, the school books scattered all over the table or the fact that dinner wasn't started sooner. Those things just don't matter to him, he knows me and he loves me and trust me enough to know that I am managing my time the best way I know how- he knows what it looks like and sounds like to do my job here at home (and how many hours it can take to clean it and how many minutes it takes to destroy it). With that said it is my goal to always have clean clothes, clean counters, clean bathrooms, no clutter, and to have makeup on, dinner started and be presentable for my husband, but we've both agreed that home educating our children comes first and foremost and all other duties are a bonus. I aim to impress though and do my best to "do everything" but sometimes I fail and my amazing husband is there to come along side of me and help me and serve me with whatever is left over. I want Special K to be proud of me and I want to seek his approval. I want to be a wife he can be proud of not a wife he is embarrassed to have.
Sometimes I can see how blessed I am just because Kevin gives me amazing grace. Yesterday it was the first day of "my time of the month" and I just told him I felt bad, I was gone from 11am-4:30pm and I was feeling awful and just done. I warned him that the baby was fussy, I wasn't home to clean and I was crabby so I couldn't feel my normal maternal sympathy that I have for my toddler...so I asked him if he could be extra kind and understanding to her. He not only did that. He didn't say a word and he cooked us dinner, he cleaned up after, did dishes, and started some laundry. He didn't want recognition and he didn't even say anything about it. I didn't even realize it until I woke up this morning and walked into a clean kitchen what a servants heart he had.
I used to try and be the leader. I did the bills, I made the big decisions, I was the spiritual leader...I can't say it was ran horribly. It didn't go well though and it wasn't as it should have been and we did have problems. I didn't look up to Kevin and I didn't respect him like I do now...I mean why would I? I was the one doing all the decision making and making us thrive (you know I was wearing the pants, I had the "balls"). I did an okay job but I never felt secure in what I was doing, God didn't bless us the same as He has since we've fallen into our roles. Special K wasn't satisfied either, he didn't even know that on the inside he was longing to be the leader...he didn't seem to care.
Now that we've discussed Special K's roll. My roll is to be his helper (like in Genesis 2:18), and to be submissive to him (Ephesians 5:22). We can also see in Titus 2:3-5 there are many other things we're called to do/be. The Bible says we should be reverent (showing deep respect), we shouldn't drink too much (I haven't tasted a sip of alcohol in over 6 months, even longer for my husband who chooses to lead by example), we need to be self controlled and pure, we should help encourage others to love their husbands and children, we should be busy at home (I am the manager at home during the day homeschooling, cleaning, cooking, planning while the hubs is out working for our family), and I should be subject to my husband.
Proverbs 12:1 says The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.
The Bible also gives us some other things that we keep in mind for both of us:
1 Corinthians 7:4 says The wife does not have authority over her own body but yields it to her husband. In the same way, the husband does not have authority over his own body but yields it to his wife. So yea, we have a rule in the bedroom. We're not allowed to refuse each other. Now, if I am extra tired he just wouldn't ask (and I never have to refuse) or if he has a hurting back or is really tired I would't ask either. We both try and not take advantage of this rule but it takes self control for a man not to. Speaking of our bodies being our own...did I mention that I get a back rub every.single.night?! That means we go to bed at the same time every night. I just wanted to toss that in since this is a brag post.
We try and be mindful of the fruits of the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.). We also really drill the kiddos with these!
We try and listen to each other, slow to speak and slow to anger James 1:19 “Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” . This is another one we harp on as a family as a whole.
We're quick to forgive. Ephesians 4:32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
We pray together and read the Bible together. Now there isn't much in the Bible specifically that I know of about praying with spouses BUT I do know a little secret. Couples that pray together stay together. Christian couples who actively pray together, the divorce rate is less than one percent (according to the Southern Baptist Convention poll in 2001). We come together unified before God. We talk about our prayer request, concerns, heart issues we're having with the kids, etc. Even talking about our prayer request seems to bring us closer, it gets us communicating more and it just works. Matthew 18:18-20 says Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.
I could go on and on because the Bible is full of wisdom and advice. But the main thing we do is we keep Christ first, in the center of our lives. Really, if we're modeling our lives after Him then all of the other things come second nature. When both of us are full of God's unselfish love we're both in unity on most every issue. We put our spousal relationship second only after our personal relationship with God. Family is third (I could probably do another post this long on why it's a good idea to put your husband/wife relationship above your relationship with the kiddos, and maybe I will).