Being a Submissive Wife
November 1, 2017
Hello. Thank you for reaching out to our spiritual needs. May God continue to bless your efforts.
I used to think that a submissive wife would quietly go along with what her husband decided, showing little emotion, etc. I have come to realize that most men do not actually want passive, unemotional wives, but a wife who can voice her concern and disagreement in a calm, kind voice—no pouting, etc. And, most importantly, have a smile and a spark (even if he is rather dull). Encouraging, praising, and continually surprising him in little ways.
We Amish tend to shy away from flattery, praise, etc., but it is so upbuilding. Encourage the men to express love, too. Too many of us go through life taking our loved ones for granted and harboring grudges. After they are gone, we are filled with regret. A quote I read somewhere: “The best way to get praise is to die.”
— Best wishes. Mrs. H
Joy Knepp responds:
Wow! You are a woman after my own heart! What jumped into my mind as I read your letter is that if we want to know how a marriage should be, we should always look at Christ and the church (Ephesians 5:22-33). For us wives, of course we have to focus on the church part of this picture. Believe me, it is easy for me to point out to my husband how HE should be! Ugh! Am I the only one who struggles with this?
When you think of the REAL church, the bride of Jesus Christ, can't you just FEEL the life and awe and excitement as we worship our Savior? There is nothing dead or dull about it. I agree totally with you that our husbands don't want to be married to a mousy doormat. I think it's a great thing to voice our opinion in an animated, loving way. Do I always get that done? Not by a long shot! I've got the animated side down pat, but the loving side can go missing in a hurry! But my husband has told me that he knows the desire of my heart and that makes up for my mess-up times. I really think that's the point we have to get to—the heart's desire.
Delight thyself also in the LORD; and He shall give you the desires of thine heart. (Psalm 37:4)
We cannot fake the desire of our heart; our husbands can feel the truth. In fact, there have been times when my attitude toward my husband has been in a horrible rut, and when I let God change the desire of my heart, my husband knew it while he was at work.
As for what you said about the best way to get praise is to die, there is WAY too much truth in that, in our culture! I know someone who says that you shouldn't praise people because it will make them proud. How SAD! And Father God taught against that. Think about what God said about Jesus, And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased (Matthew 3:17). Oh, glory! How our husbands and sons need to hear words like that!
Also, one of my favorite verses on this subject is Proverbs 18:21, Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof. Basically, whichever one our tongue dishes out, we will get back.
Deuteronomy 30:19: I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live. Wow! Sounds like a life or death matter to me!
Anyway, I will quit rambling on now! Wishing you and your family lots of God's blessings. Thank you so much for your letter!
—Your sister in Christ, Joy Knepp
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