Submission is a dirty word in today’s culture. We’ve taken something beautiful as designed by God and turned it into something ugly, using the idea of submission as a means to control and enslave. There are two different ways of thought that we can fall into when it comes to the idea of a wife submitting to her husband. One is that it’s an entirely sexist idea and that a woman is free to do whatever she wants without the input and direction of anyone else. Or two, that submission is a practice that make women a kind of doormat with no right to opinions, authority or freedom.
I believe neither of these two ways of thought are correct. I don’t believe we are designed to be fully independent or fully dependent. I believe that when God made woman, He crafted her to be a fierce, passionate, and fully alive being with ideas and dreams and wisdom that the world actually needs. But I also believe that God has designed man and woman in an order for a reason, and that He asks us as women and wives to submit to the men in our lives as a way to actually keep us safe and protected.
The role of a husband and father is to lead, protect, and guide the ones under his care. That is his God-given assignment. He didn’t ask for it. But it’s what he was created for. It’s part of his purpose, his place, his calling…he is a man and he is given tremendous responsibility for the well-being of his household. Not to say that a wife and mother doesn’t play an important part in the well-being of a household, because she does. She plays a tremendous part. But it’s a different part…not a lesser part, but a different one.
My husband is designed to protect me, not just physically, but also emotionally and spiritually. But I have to choose to let him. There are so many times where I can think back to when there was a decision that he made that I didn’t fully agree with or even understand. And it’s not always a yes-or-no decision, but even little things like what time to leave for the airport, or what items to bring along, or what kind of plans we should make. It has literally happened so many times now in the past years where his decision turned out way better than my idea that almost every time I am unsure about something he is deciding, I just smile to myself inside and know that I’ll probably understand why at some point.
My husband isn’t perfect and he’s not God, so it’s not that he never makes a wrong decision. But I am not perfect either, and it’s not that I always make the right decision. What I have learned is that sometimes his heart knows something that mine does not, and I believe that that knowing is put there by God. And that is what I trust and why I can see the beauty of the God-designed way of submission. I’ve learned to love submission as God designed it. Because in it, I feel safe. I feel protected. When I let my husband lead me, I feel most like the woman I am made to be.