Marriage // Significant Others - Part 1 [Devo]

Marriage // Significant Others - Part 1

“[Submit] to one another out of reverence for Christ” - Ephesians 5:21b (ESV)

When I was a kid, my buddies and I loved wrestling. We didn’t just love watching it, either. Almost every sleepover turned into a full WWE cage match. As we were testing who was the strongest and toughest among us, everyone's main goal was to avoid having to say the most feared word: “Uncle!” If you’re not familiar, when you have someone in a submission move and you’re trying to get them to give up, you tell them to say “uncle.” Doing so is an admission of defeat.

Our culture views the idea of submission outside of the ring the same as we do inside. However, when the bible talks about submission, God has something much different in mind. The biblical view of submission is not giving up and admitting defeat to someone who is superior. Instead, it’s a better and more life giving way of approaching our relationships.
 
While the command to submit to one another is given to all Christians, Paul makes the case later in Ephesians that in the marriage relationship, husbands and wives are to submit to one another. Pastor Tim shared on Sunday how submission looks different for the husband and wife. Husbands are to imitate Christ and lay down their lives in love for their wives by caring about her physical, emotional and spiritual needs. A wife’s responsibility is to respect her husband’s leadership in the home.

In wrestling terms, neither party should be trying to get the other to say “uncle.” The role for both husbands and wives comes down to considering the other as more important than themselves (Philippians 2:3b). This is how my wife, Delaney, and I strive to be in our marriage. However, we are far from perfect. Speaking for myself, I have not always laid down my life for her. I’ve put my own interests and needs ahead of hers. And she would be the first to tell you that she hasn’t always perfectly respected me.
 
When Delaney and I have both submitted to one another, our marriage has flourished. However, you can only control your own actions. It is not my responsibility to ensure that Delaney respects me. It is my responsibility to actively lay down my life for her.

My encouragement to you this week, if you’re married, is to consider this question: “How can I grow in my submission [or love] for my spouse?”
And if you’re not married, consider this one: “How can I grow in my submission [or love] for others?
Author: Andrew Archer, Student Ministry Director

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