Hey there. Thanks for listening to the Greg Laurie Podcast, a ministry supported by Harvest Partners. I'm Greg Laurie, encouraging you.
If you want to find out more about Harvest Ministries and learn more about how to become a Harvest Partner, just go to harvest.org. We're in our series, Am I Doing This Right? I'm going to talk about how to get a new husband today, ladies, so we'll address that in just a moment. So turn to 1 Peter chapter 3. Next Sunday my son Jonathan will speak on parenting.
And then finally I'm going to wrap up this series with a message titled, How to Divorce Proof Your Marriage. So a guy is walking down the beach right here in Southern California. And he sees something shiny embedded in the sand.
He reaches down, picks it up. It's a lamp. He brushes the sand off and a genie appears.
This is a true story. So the genie appears and says, oh master, I will grant you one wish. The guy said one. What happened to three wishes? The genie said COVID. You know, COVID, COVID changed everything. We can only do one wish now. Everything is blamed on COVID now.
Have you noticed that? But anyway, okay, one wish. Wow, that's a hard one. Let me think about that for a moment. They said, you know, I've always wanted to go to Hawaii. I've heard it's so beautiful.
The water, the sun, everything, the waves. I want to go to Hawaii, but I'm afraid to fly. So genie, here's my one wish. I want to bridge from California to Hawaii so I can drive my car right over there to the island of Maui. That's my wish.
Bridge, California to Maui. Genie says, are you insane? There's no way. It's too much.
The scale, the cost, the concrete. No, I can't do that. What else you got? The guy said, well, I'm married and I don't understand my wife at all. In fact, I don't understand women. So here's my wish, genie. I wish that you will give me the ability to understand women. The genie says, back to the bridge.
Is that two lanes or four? Understanding women. That's not something I've figured out. I've been married almost 50 years.
I have four granddaughters even. They're still a bit of a mystery to me, but you know what? Women are even a mystery to women, aren't they? Because sometimes I'll ask my wife, okay, a girl said this to me.
What does this mean? And sometimes she knows, sometimes she doesn't. Well, they may be a mystery to men, but they're not a mystery to God. He knows all about you ladies.
He created you and your unique qualities that you have. So last time I talked to men, and now I'm going to talk to the ladies. And I'm also going to have my wife, Kathy, come up at the end of the message with some insights as well. But I want to talk about how to get a new husband. Look, if we want a marriage that's going to work, we're going to have to look away from culture. Culture is not, for the most part, supportive of marriage. And it wasn't always that way. When I was a kid in a time known as the 50s, there actually were television programs and other things that supported the idea of a family. We watched television programs like Ozzie and Harriet, Leave It to Beaver, Father Knows Best, and things like that. There was a mom, there was a dad, there was sort of a cultural morality, if you will.
Those days are long gone. And now it seems like most of the things you see mock, undermine, make light of the idea of the family. So we have to put away the world's take it or leave it attitude toward marriage. Now I did read an interesting article today in the Washington Post about how to have a long and lasting marriage.
The Washington Post is far from a conservative or a Christian kind of a publication. But this article pointed out if you want to have a long and lasting marriage, you need to strike the idea of divorce from your vocabulary. I thought, oh, that's interesting. Then they said, and you need to learn how to communicate better, and you need to learn how to forgive.
I thought, I've heard that somewhere. I think we talked about that in our last message and in this series on marriage. But God tells us how to have a successful, lasting, and happy marriage. Sometimes people come to me for marital counsel.
I've done quite a few appointments over the years. So I'll sit down with a couple and I'll usually start with a few questions. I'll ask, are you both Christians? Oh, yes, we're Christians. We love the Lord.
Great. Do both of you believe the Bible to be the word of God? Oh, yes, yes, the Bible is the word of God. OK, are you willing to do what the Bible says even if you find it difficult or uncomfortable?
Then they get kind of quiet because I think they know where I'm going to go. I'm going to apply scripture now to their situation because everybody who is having marital problems thinks their situation is different. But in general, it isn't. There are exceptions.
I've seen a few wild things and heard some stories you wouldn't believe. But by and large, it's the same problems cropping up in every marriage. And if you were to sum it up in a sentence, it would be because they're living selfishly instead of selflessly.
Right. So that person, the husband may say, she's not meeting my needs. She says he's not meeting my needs and so forth.
So we've got to go back to what the scripture says. And I don't know what state your marriage is in today. You may have a vibrant, strong, happy marriage.
If so, God bless you. And I hope this message encourages you. There might be somebody here that looks like you have a strong, happy marriage.
But under the hood, there's some serious problems. I hope that today you'll find your marriage bolstered and strengthened. But then again, there might be somebody here whose marriage is on the brink of divorce.
You've even talked to attorneys. You're hanging by a thread and the thread is on fire. And I want you to know there's hope for you. There's hope for your marriage to restore it again. Hope.
H-O-P-E. Holding on with patient expectation. You see, there's not much hope if you abandon ship. Winston Churchill once made this statement, and he said this to me personally.
No, not really. I never met Winston Churchill. He made this statement, quote, victory is not won by evacuation, end quote. Well, Churchill knew a little bit about that, didn't he?
The prime minister of England during World War II when the Nazis were bombing London on a nightly basis and the United States had not yet entered the conflict. He was holding on, but he had courage and encouraged his people to hold on. Victory is not won by evacuation. The same is true of marriage. So how do you get a new husband? I don't mean leaving him.
I don't mean trading him in for the new model. I'm talking about what you can do as a woman to help your guy become a new man. It's so great when time has passed and you're able to look back at all those memories together. Kathy and I like to reflect back on our marriage and all the adventures we've had over the decades, and sometimes we'll be out having a meal and someone might say, well, how long have you two been married? And we tell them their jaw drops to the ground.
Fifty years, what? You know, they can't believe it. It seems to be such an unusual thing, but it doesn't have to be. It's rare to see a long-term marriage in good condition because a woman marries a man expecting he will change, but he doesn't. A man marries a woman expecting she will never change, but she does.
So a word to singles out there, girls. You see some guy, you say, now this guy, he's a mess. He's trouble, but I'm going to fix him.
Newsflash, no you aren't. In fact, he might even get worse. So if you can't love him as he is, maybe you may want to go a different direction. Some women work so hard to make good husbands, they never manage to be good wives. Let's see what the Bible has to say to the woman about being the best wife you can be.
First Peter chapter three, I'm reading verses one to four from the New Living Translation. Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, even those who refuse to accept the good news. Your godly lives will speak to them better than any words.
They'll be won over by watching your pure godly behavior. Don't be concerned about the outward beauty that depends on fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should be known for the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit which is so precious to God.
So what do we learn here about how to get a new husband? Number one, if you're taking notes, be the best version of you that you can be. Be the best version of you that you can be. This means you want to be a balanced woman. You want to be a godly woman. Every lady should read and carefully study Proverbs 31. For there we find what is described in the Bible as a virtuous woman. Now we sometimes think that the word virtue is a feminine term only applying to women, but actually it's used of men and women in the Bible.
It speaks of purity, strength, force, and value. When we read about this woman of virtue in Proverbs 31, this is a hardworking woman. She's a businesswoman. She's a homemaker. She's a great wife. She's a mother.
She's a beauty inside and out. And you know, the focus of the culture today is almost exclusively on your appearance, isn't it? You know, just look at women's magazines. I subscribe to all of them, and I don't. But if you just look at the headlines on Vogue or Cosmopolitan or whatever, you just go, wow.
They seem to only be focused on the outward, never on the inward. It's like, here, find out your horoscope or whatever it might be. I just thought, what if Vogue, I came across this issue of Vogue. Look at this. Look at it.
Read the things. What if Vogue came out with an issue, Queen Esther, I'm doing what's right. The value of virtue. How the daily study of scripture can help you grow spiritually in your journey.
Twenty scriptures on how to have a better marriage and be faithful to yourself. Can you imagine an issue of Vogue looking like that? You say, Greg, where did you get that? We made it up in the art department. Because it doesn't exist. Because you'll never find a Vogue that looks like this unless we have a spiritual awakening, and maybe you will.
But I may imagine that for a moment. Imagine a woman's magazine, or for that matter a man's magazine, underscoring and supporting biblical values instead of undermining them. Well, that's the focus of the culture. So much emphasis on how you look.
And it's been amplified a thousand times more by social media. I want to look this way. Plastic surgery is bigger than it's ever been. Sixteen billion dollars is spent on plastic surgery every year. That's in Newport Beach alone.
It's even more in Beverly Hills. Now when you mention getting Botox, no one even raises an eyebrow. Right? Because their eyebrows are already raised. Did you get Botox? No.
Furrow your brow right now. I am. Yeah. Heard about a plastic surgery addict support group that meets weekly. There's a lot of new faces in the group every week. I know all the cosmetic surgery people are hating me.
They're like, I hate you. No, but here's the thing. I'm not making light of it. Hey, you want to get plastic surgery? Get it.
Botox, have at it, whatever. That's not my point. What I'm saying is the Bible is not saying neglect the outward. It's saying primarily focus on the inward. See, the virtuous woman, the woman of God, gets better with the passing of years. We think, oh no, I don't want to get older.
It's horrible. No, no. The virtuous woman becomes more beautiful on the inside and in ways even on the outside because of her countenance, you see. Do you understand what I mean when I say countenance? Something that just emanates from this godly girl that the ungodly girl doesn't have. Despite her beauty, despite everything she may do, there's something special about that godly woman. We're all going to get older.
We can't stop the march of time. As you know, my wife Kathy just had hip replacement surgery. She's doing very well.
She didn't need the walker at all. She went straight to a little cane, and she barely needs that now, but it's still a little sore, so we walk a little bit so she can get some exercise. She walked a mile the other day.
I think that's quite a distance for someone that got a hip replacement, right? So we're walking in our neighborhood. Kathy has her little cane, and she's beautiful and very youthful looking. Some lady, mother, is pulling a little wagon. There's a little girl in the back. She looks over at Kathy, and she says, Hi, old lady. Kathy took her cane and shook it at her. She says, I'll get you, my pretty.
No, not really. Kathy was gesturing with the cane. She goes, look at this. I go, don't gesture with the cane. Get the cane out. No cane gesturing.
Don't become too used to it. I actually yelled out to the mother. She just had hip replacement surgery. She won't even have a cane soon. She's doing really well. Mother's like, leave me alone. Just get out of here and take your breath with you. Not really, but in my heart I felt that.
No. Look at verse 3 of 1 Peter 3. Don't let your adornment be merely outward. The word adornment is from the Greek word cosmos. So where'd we get from that? Cosmetic, of course. So here's what he's saying.
Don't major on externals while ignoring the inside. What he says, putting on fine apparel, it means a frequent changing of clothes with the purpose of impressing people. There's nothing wrong with having beautiful clothes, ladies. There's nothing wrong with being an attractive woman. But don't be so obsessed with that you neglect the n-word altogether. Focus. Well, should a Christian woman wear makeup?
Hey, if a house needs painting, paint it. That's not the issue. The issue is preoccupation. See, if I'm preoccupied as a woman, and for that matter a man, with my appearance and I completely neglect the internal and the spiritual, my life is out of balance. 1 Timothy 4-8 says, physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for this life and the life to come. But it does say physical training has some value, right?
Because someone might be really out of shape and they've obviously taken no care on their appearance and you say, hey, man, you wanna step up your game a little bit? Hey, man, physical appearance is of little value. Yeah, well, whatever. It is some, and you could use a lot of it. So maybe you swung too far the other way. Listen, in the name of spirituality, which isn't spirituality at all, well, I'm not into those things. Well, maybe you need to be into them a little more. Take a little better care of your physical body and of the way that you look. But however, you can go too far the other way.
So it's finding the balance. And not every girl's a beauty queen. Not every man is a male model, as I am. No, I'm not. No, I didn't even need to say no, I'm not. Why did I even say that? No, I'm not, yeah. Yeah, we knew, Greg, we knew. That was a joke.
That's why we laugh, get a grip. But here's what it's saying to girls. Develop your mind and your heart as well as your appearance. The godly woman is known for wisdom as well as beauty. Proverbs 31 says, when she speaks, her words are wise. And she gives instructions with kindness. Charm is deceptive, beauty does not last, but a woman that fears the Lord will be greatly praised. Again, 1 Peter 3, the beauty that comes from within. So just be the best you that you can be.
Number two, this is a big one, girls. Respect your man. 1 Peter 3 again, wives, be submissive to your own husbands. And even if some do not obey the word, without a word they may be won. Underline that, without a word they may be won by the conduct of their wives when they observe your chaste and respectful conduct accompanied by fear. R-E-S-P-E-C-T, that is what he needs from thee.
That is what he needs from thee. Now we all know that song, Respect, popularized by Aretha Franklin. She didn't write it, by the way. Might surprise you to know the song was written by a guy. His name was Otis Redding.
He's also known for his song Sittin' By the Dock of the Bay. So think of this, this song originally was written by a man from a male perspective. And in the original version of the song, the lyrics are, hey little girl, you're so sweeter than honey and I wanna give you all my money.
Good start. But then he says, but I want you to give it, give it, give it when I come home, respect when I want it, respect when I need it, respect, got to have it, sock it to me, sock it to me, sock it to me, sock it to me, right? That's it. Here's what he's saying, girl. Give me some respect when I come home.
He was onto something. This is what the Bible says. Listen, wives, to win your husbands means you need to respect them. Ephesians 5, 33 says, nevertheless, that every one of you in particular, love his wife as himself and let the wife see that she respects her husband.
I want you to think about this for a moment. The Bible specifically says to husbands, love your wives. And it specifically says to women, respect your husband. That does not mean that wives don't need respect. Nor does it mean that husbands don't need love.
But what it does mean is specific instructions are given to men and women. So why don't you quit focusing on what he's supposed to do, girls, and focus on what you're supposed to do and guys, quit focusing on what she's supposed to do and you make sure you're doing your part. Respect your husband. Dr. Emerson Egerich writes in this excellent book, Love and Respect, these words, quote, when a husband feels disrespected, it's especially hard to love his wife. When a wife feels unloved, it's especially hard to respect her husband, end quote.
That's really true. See, when a husband feels disrespected, he has a natural tendency to react in ways that seem unloving to his wife. But when a wife feels unloved, she has a natural tendency to react in ways that seem disrespectful to her husband. Here's what I'm saying. Don't wait until you feel it.
Just start doing it. Show a little respect. I heard about a woman who was having problems with her husband. She decided to divorce him. So she went down to an attorney and said, I wanna divorce my husband, but even more, I wanna hurt him. I want this to be painful. What do you suggest?
And the attorney said, I've got an idea. I want you for the next three months to smother your husband with affection. Tell him how wonderful he is, how handsome he is, how hardworking he is, how much you appreciate him, how much you respect him. Make him what he wants to eat. Just make his life wonderful. Do that for three months and then just tell him, I'm divorcing you.
He won't know what hit him. She said, okay. And so every day she'd get up and tell her husband, she'd love him, tell her husband she respects him. Over and over again, three months later, the attorney called and says, okay, let's get this party started. Let's follow this lawsuit. She says, lawsuit? We're going on our second honeymoon. What happened?
What happened is she understood the biblical principle of respecting her husband. So let's start, girls. I made the guys do something awkward. Now it's your turn. Wives, turn to your husbands. You're not turning.
Turn to your husbands. You're gonna say something to them. Ready? Say this. Is it just me or does Greg actually get handsome every time? No, don't say that. No, no, okay. Just say this. I respect you. Say that. I respect you. Say it.
Ooh. I respect you. See, the guy can, oh, okay. Listen, girls, guys aren't that complex.
We really aren't. Just a little respect. Just say, respect you. Wow, thank you. I'll give you all my money. Honey, what can I do for you?
Yes. It's a clear biblical principle. So number one, let your beauty be inward, but don't forget the outward. Number two, respect and honor your husband. Number three, focus on actions over words to influence your husband.
Focus on actions over words to influence your husband. 1 Peter 3, one, likewise wives, be submissive to your husbands. And by the way, this is speaking of a non-believing husband. And even if some do not obey the word, they without a word will be won by the conduct of their wives. So maybe I'm talking to a lady here that's married to a non-believing man.
I don't know how you got yourself into that situation. Maybe when you married, neither one of you were believers and then you became a Christian, but he didn't. And you want him to come to the Lord. You're thinking, how can I convert my husband? I know, I'll preach a sermon to him every single day. That's not what the Bible tells you to do. Or you might say, well, I'm gonna dump him because the Lord spoke to me the other day and said, oh my daughter, dump your dog husband and marry that sensitive Christian man you met at church.
No, God didn't say that. Here's what God said, 1 Peter 3, if you're with a non-believing man, you can win him over by the way that you live. Less criticism, more encouragement. Less preaching, more praise. Less talk, more walk.
Less sermons, more sandwiches. I told you guys, they're not that complex. You know, it's been said the way to a man's heart is through his stomach. Now that's, you know, it can be overly simplistic, but you make him a great meal. You tell him you love and respect him.
Girl, listen, that will go a long ways, further than you may think. Oh no, I'll preach to him. I will nag him into the kingdom of God. No, you will not. You'll drive him away.
That's what you'll do. This is what Peter is saying. A translation of what he says here, one is, translation is, the silent preaching of a lovely wife. Peter is saying the key to reach a man is not through words but deeds, not telling him but showing him because actions speak louder than words. You live the godly life and the Lord will do the changing. And I know Christian wives who have been married to non-believing guys and they've applied this principle and it doesn't happen necessarily overnight. In some cases, it took a decade, maybe two decades, and then one day, boom, the guy comes around. And now they have a wonderful, happy marriage and they're so glad they live by what the scripture said.
Do it without a word. I don't think I'm overstating it when I say in general, women are more verbal than men. Would we agree on that? Studies have been done. I don't know how they do it but they said an average woman speaks 20,000 words a day, a man about 7,000.
That's not quite as many. So women are more verbal in general and a woman in general is more of a persuader through what she says. Given over to God, this can be a powerful tool. Think of Queen Esther persuading the king to spare the lives of her people, the Jews. That's feminine persuasion at its best.
Think of Eve without him at the garden encouraging him to eat the forbidden fruit. That's feminine persuasion at its worst. Listen, ladies, say what you have to say. Men, listen to what they say.
Proverbs 31, 30 says, when she speaks, her words are wise and she gives instructions with kindness. But now, ladies, avoid the temptation to nag. It doesn't help. It actually can make things worse. Proverbs 19, 13 says, a nagging wife is like a constant dripping.
Mm. You ever have a faucet that drips in the night and you get out of bed? We're gonna turn that thing off. Right, that's what nagging is like. Scolding, complaining. That will drive him away. Proverbs 21, 19 says, better to dwell on a housetop than with a brawling, quarreling, disagreeing, scolding woman. This has been said and I like it. The wife who henpecks her husband is likely to find him listening to some other chick. Come on, that's good. The wife who hens, you get it? Henpeck chick, little plant where it's the birds. If she henpecks her husband, she'll find him listening to another chick. Whatever, you're hard to please, aren't you?
They liked it better in Riverside. I don't know what your problem is. Maybe it's the Botox, I'm kidding. Now I've turned everyone against me. But I can't tell because your eyebrows are lifted.
You look happy, so I think I'm okay, I don't know. Think about what you say. Think before you speak.
Think, T-H-I-N-K, before those words come out of your mouth. T, is it true? H, is it helpful? I, is it inspiring?
N, is it necessary? K, is it kind? Give me a Greg.
If I lived by that Greg, I would say very little, okay? When and without a word. See, men hear things differently. You may mean it one way, he may hear it. He may hear it another way. You might say when you're out driving, you're lost. Let's stop and ask for directions. He hears you saying, you're not a man.
You say, can I have the remote control? And he hears you saying, let's watch something that will be boring beyond belief. You might say to the husband, let's redecorate. And he hears you say, let's take a lot of money and just flush it down the toilet. You say, you need to get in touch with your feelings. He hears you saying, blah, blah, blah, blah. You say, are you listening? He hears you say, blah, blah, blah. We're just different, we're wired differently.
We can celebrate that. Like when I go out to order food with my wife, it's just classic the way it goes. When I sit down in a restaurant, I know exactly what I want, especially if I go to the restaurant on a regular basis.
I already decided. I'm ready to order before they bring water. But my wife will say, can I see the menu?
I'll say, Kathy, we come here all the time. You've memorized the menu. And I said, and even more, I know what you're going to order. You're going to order this.
No, I'm going to look at the menu. And she orders. And then she orders exactly what I said she'd order. But she'll say, like, I'll have a salad. And I'll say, well, Kathy, you should eat more than that.
She says, I'll just have a little of yours. No, no. Get your own. I'll buy it for you. Whatever you want on this menu, I'll buy it so you can eat. No, I just want a bite of yours.
No. Let me tell you about men and food. Think of a dog with food in a dish. And your dog's normally friendly. And you pat it on the head. And he growls at you. That's a man eating. Just let the man eat. He tries to pretend he's being polite. He just wants to stuff it in his face.
But anyway, I don't know what that's all about. I just kind of got it from that day. And then I'll be eating whatever it is, a hamburger, a perfect hamburger. I'm saving that last bite, just looking forward to it.
I have it on my hand. She'll say, can I have that last bite? You're like, yeah. Sure, honey, here you go.
But inside, it's like, no. But I get my revenge in dessert, if we order it. Like, you want to order dessert? Oh, no, no, I don't want dessert. But we order it. And then she'll be eating it. And if we're with someone else, she'll take a bite and talk to somebody and hold it on the fork. I go in for the kill. Where did it go?
I have no idea, right? But here's point number four. Submit, this is all you're gonna remember are all these stupid jokes. Submit to the leadership of your husband.
Now, this is where a lot of girls choke. Submit to the leadership of your husband. 1 Peter 3, this is King James. Likewise, wise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they without a word will be won by the conduct of their wives while they observe your chase, and respectful conduct accompanied by fear. Some women bristle at this because they don't understand it. They see it as sort of, well, really, Paul's sort of a chauvinist, okay? Misogynistic. And, you know, I'm better than women, and we're over women.
Now, you got it all wrong, okay? If you know anything about the culture Paul was writing to, you would realize it's the opposite. The Bible and Christianity elevated the woman. Back in this culture, Romans treated wives like objects. You could discard them at will, divorce them for no real reason, even in some aspects of the Jewish culture.
A woman could be divorced for any reason. Okay, so when Paul says to men, love your wife as Christ loves the church, that's a game changer. Put her needs above your needs. Love her as Jesus loves the church. Sacrifice for her. Serve her.
Whoa. Wives, be submissive to your husbands. Hold on. Before he says wives should submit to their husbands and husbands should love their wives, Ephesians 5 says be submissive one to another in the reverence of God. So we just start off there. I'm gonna put your needs above my needs.
Again, back to selflessness instead of selfishness. Listen, as far as a man and a woman go, they stand on equal ground before God because of the death of Jesus on the cross. Men are not better than women. Women are not better than men.
We're not better than each other, but we're very different from each other. And Galatians 3, 28 says there's neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female. We're all one in Christ, but then I would point this out. Though there is no difference between men and women in the nature of their salvation or standing before God, the husband has the God-given responsibility to provide for, protect, and lead just as the Lord does the church. And the wife is to submit graciously to the servant leadership that the husband provides. Just as the church submits willingly to Jesus, the wife does the same. Now, what about if the husband asks the wife to do something she doesn't wanna do?
Well, let's try to figure out what that might be. If it's maybe they'll make you a meal you don't wanna make or do something, that's one thing, but if it's unbiblical or illegal or immoral, certainly you're not required to submit to that. Actually, Colossians 3, 18 says, be subject to your husband's as it is fit in the Lord.
So if the husband were to ask you to do something that's not fit in the Lord, you're not required to submit to that. For instance, we're told to submit to the ordinance of men for the Lord's sake and to the king and to governors and those who are in authority. So we submit to the government.
By that, I mean if the officer pulls up behind us and turns on the lights, we pull over. We comply. If it comes time to pay our taxes, though they're too high and so much of our money is wasted, we pay our taxes. And by the way, if you don't like it, register and vote. This is a big problem we have today. We need to get out there and vote. There's a lot of things I don't like about our government right now. A lot of things I don't like about what's happening in the state of California. A lot of things I have very strong opinions on. So the place where I can express that is at the ballot box.
But listen to this. If the government suddenly passes a law that says you can no longer pray, do I obey that law? The answer is no. If the government says you can no longer preach the gospel, do I obey that law? No, I'm gonna do what God tells me to do.
This is the situation of the apostles who were forbidden to preach by the Roman authorities and they said we must obey God and not man. Okay, so that can happen in a marriage. The husband says you must do this. I'm the husband.
Okay, well, what are you saying now? You can never go to church again or read your Bible because I'm the head of the home. Well honey, gonna have to not do that. I'm gonna read the word of God and I'm gonna go to church and I'm gonna take the kids with me. I'll make you a great lunch afterwards. But I'm gonna look up for my own spiritual welfare and the welfare of our children.
See, you make a stand in certain areas. No, we're not doing that, okay? If he were to hurt you, if he were to hit you, abuse you in any way, no, you don't submit to that.
We'll get into that later when we talk about how to divorce-proof your marriage. But there's limits to submission. But setting that aside, and listen, I can't get into all the nuances of this because no matter what I say, someone will say, yeah, but what about this? Well, I only have so much time and my time is almost up. That's why we encourage you to be in a small group because we're going through this curriculum that we're teaching on in this series.
Am I doing this right? And you can talk about that among other believers in the small group and it will help strengthen your marriage. But I wanna shift gears now and get my wife Kathy out here as we talk a little bit more. So let's welcome Kathy Laurie. Don't say, hey, old lady, to her.
Coming slowly, I'm coming. Look, she's moving fast, though. I know. All right, so I was saying to Kathy, she was out with a cane and she started gesturing with it.
Well, look at that over there. I said, don't gesture with the cane. We're gonna get rid of the cane as soon as we can. I think he's intimidated by this cane. I am. I'm afraid of it. This is a source of strength right here.
Yes, it's like Moses' staff. Kathy, do you think, and I want you to speak on behalf of all women everywhere on earth. Oh, boy. Yeah, no, I'm kidding. I mean, who can do that?
Nobody. But do you think that in general, that women want strong leadership from men? Yes, I do. I think underneath it all, we do wanna see men be who God has called them to be. I mean, ideally, we want men to stand up to the role to which God has called them to. And I think strong men can be misunderstood as abusive or... What would you say a strong man is? What's a strong man? Well, in my definition, a strong man is one who is recognizing his position that God has given him as leader and head of the marriage and of the family, but that also that that role entails a great deal of servant leadership as he models the love that Christ has for the church.
That is huge. So in a sense, we both are called to play that role of Christ as a wife submits to the headship and godly leadership of her husband in the same way the husband is loving his wife, laying down his life, pursuing the good of the family, the good of the wife, as equal to his own personal good. So a strong man is one who understands his role as God has given it to him, but does not use that for selfish gain himself. I mean, he's looking out for the best welfare of the wife and of the children. And I think that when a wife sees that, that servant-like leadership, that she is more willing to surrender and submit. What she doesn't like to see is a husband who exploits that quote-unquote headship or leadership for his own selfish gain. Everything from who gets to hold the remote control or pick the color of the car, those kinds of things, those things should be a collaboration and a cooperation in marriage.
It's everybody bringing their best selves, their sacrificial love, and all the strengths and attributes that they have into the marriage. What do men need to know about women? What are we missing? Tell us. We're clueless. Oh, my gosh.
This is a hard question. What do men need to know about women? And I'm gonna speak biblically here that women are unique in God's design, that we have gifts and perspectives and opinions that are valuable and that are well worth listening to, that women have strengths that men do not have and vice versa, and that a good and godly man is not intimidated by allowing a wife to realize her best self in the same way she wants her husband to be his best self. I think that the whole role of marriage over time and over the years is for us to help one another, as the scriptures say, that not good is the aloneness of man.
We bring perspectives and gifts and wisdom to the marriage together and cooperating with one another, right? Yeah. I'm looking for his approval. No, I agree.
Is it going too long? Sorry. I approve this message.
So 1 Peter 3, Peter talks about don't major on the externals. Let it be the hidden person of the heart, but there is a place for, you know, just a woman being attractive. You're a beautiful woman. You think about what you're gonna wear. I mean, there's nothing wrong with it, so kind of address this, especially maybe, well, I mean, women of all ages, but talk as a girl to girls, like, okay, here's how I see this. Okay, the Bible says... Well, you know, it's interesting because... I'm kidding. I did it again.
This chain will sit right over here. No, honestly, it's a joke. He always gets me to laugh, which is one of his strengths because it diffuses me, but let me just say this, that when it comes to outward appearance, it's like manners in a way. You know, I mean, when you think about the value of manners in culture and society, we think, well, what does it really matter which fork I use or if I chew with my mouth open or if I comb my hair in the morning? It's not that you're doing this for your own self. It's doing this out of consideration and preference of others, so for a wife to overly focus on her appearance and neglect the inner qualities of kindness and gentleness and mercy and love, that would be a tragedy.
It talks about, you know, a ring of gold in a pig's snout, you know, a woman without discretion. It may be beautiful. It's like it doesn't fit, but if you were to at least give some consideration to your outward appearance, people cannot see your soul. They can see it in action, perhaps, but when you make that first impression and you think about a husband has to come home to his wife or see his wife and vice versa, guys, this is the same for you. You know, when you're first dating, you're on your best behavior.
You wouldn't dare show up, you know, not thinking about how you looked or how you behaved on that first date. Revisit those same courtesies and manners. It goes a long way. It makes life way smoother and much more enjoyable for people to be around you. Having said that, it is, you know, the society is swinging so far to outward appearance, so far to that that we need to recognize where we are as children of God and who we are before Him. It's a balance in all of these areas, so yeah, pay some attention, but it's not the most important thing, but it is an important thing, if you get what I'm saying. Right, true.
You guys are a good audience up here. So what about submission? Okay, so people, I've seen some, you know, women like, I hate that, you know, and it's male chauvinism, it's misogynist and all this stuff. You know, it's interesting because when you look back culturally at the way things were for women, when Paul wrote those words to a man, love your wife as Christ loves the church, in Roman culture, women were regarded as an object.
You could, almost like one of your possessions, you could divorce her, walk away from her, no real reason even needed, and even in some aspects of Jewish culture, you could put away your wife or divorce her for almost any reason. In fact, the Pharisees came to Jesus and brought that topic up to him, and he brought it back to Genesis. He says, hey, for this cause shall I man, leave his father, mother, be joined his wife.
He's saying, guys, you're missing the point here. So, but talk about submission and what that means in day-to-day living to a Christian wife. Submission is something that God has explained and God has shown us in his Word, and there is no getting around it. It speaks directly to the relationship of Christ to the Father, and there is submission on the part of Jesus to the will of his Father. It is embedded in the Trinity and in the Godhead, and when the Scriptures teach that a wife is to be in submission to her husband, as we rightfully understand what that means, I think you did a great job of explaining cases where it does not apply, you know, anything illegal, immoral, detrimental to her health, to the children.
You know, that's a totally different question. We're not talking about that, but submission is a beautiful thing in that we get to, as wives, live out the glory of the redemption story of laying your life down, of taking second place, if that's needed, and husbands, and I'm not talking to the husbands cause this is the wives' week, and I think you handled that well last week. The men also have a role of submission in that every part of our marriages is really a collaboration. It's so rare that Greg has ever had to make the hard decision, and ladies, can I just tell you, there are a lot of men who would love to run from the area of responsibility and that they are the head, and they're the ones that have to make the final call. When two people in a marriage, and there's two of you, not three of you, there is only two votes, and if you vote on opposite sides, someone has to bear the responsibility, and I will say, the heavy burden of making the final decision. And when a wife says to her husband, honey, I disagree, here are the reasons why, here's my opinion on this, here's everything that I know and why I think it's wrong, however, you are the one that God has placed in the position of having to make this difficult decision, and you are gonna have to answer to God for this decision. No pressure there. No pressure there.
The family will follow you, and you know what, ladies, I have seen more time, I mean, we've had a few situations like that. By and large, we're able to come to some sort of consensus, but there have been times when Greg has had to make the final call. It was about the hairpiece I wanted to wear. You were against it.
A squirrel ran off with it. We won't go there. Seemed inappropriate to me, go ahead. But anyhow, I will say God has miraculously changed what I thought was an obviously wrong decision, and it's turned out to be the right decision. However, there have been times when I think, and I think, Greg, you would also admit to this, there have been times when it probably wasn't quite the right decision. Sure, yeah.
But through that, if... Not that many, but some. If I had fought him tooth and nail and said, I will refuse, I will fight you on this, I will divide the family over this, I will do that, not only are you out of God's order, number one, but number two, you are depriving your husband of learning a very important and valuable lesson, and I think that God sometimes allows us to learn through mistakes and through failures, and the next time around, if you don't fight, but he comes to realize this on his own, he's gonna recognize that your input was so valuable, your perspective was unique, and that he will listen more carefully the next time he makes a decision. So just back off and allow God to do what he says he will do for us as Christian wives, and that is just live out the role that God has called us to.
There's beauty in it. You are reflecting the role of Christ, and there is no demeaning of that. No, as a matter of fact, it's an exalted role. Let him who is the greatest among you be the servant of all. Sometimes you feel like you're a servant, and you just kind of say to yourself, I am playing out the role of Jesus in this.
I am serving, and let me tell you, your husband will see it, and the Lord will see it, and there will be a blessed life, and there's that blending and cooperation. The actions speak louder than words in a marriage. Sometimes your husband sees those things. He knows what it's cost you.
Let the Holy Spirit speak to him. Back away, and enjoy what God's going to do. I mean, marriage is challenging. It's hard, but everything is hard.
Everything in life has its challenges. Anything worth anything is going to take some effort and some working at it, but boy, it's that garden that in time produces amazing and beautiful fruit, and you have memories to share, and the hard times only end up being more significant and more, it just enhances the beauty of everything that you have in your relationship, in your marriage, having overcome obstacles, and I have seen women who were always dominant, always in control, husbands who are passive, and I've seen the marriages hanging by a thread. Husband just said, I've had enough.
I just can't take it anymore, ladies. I'm walking out, and I saw one woman in particular recognize that she had tried to control everything about this man's life, and when she recognized she was on the verge of losing her marriage, she turned on a dime. She started studying the scriptures. She started living out that role of a quiet woman and praying for her husband and really serving him that he turned around. She saved her marriage. She saved her marriage.
Ladies, we can be our own worst enemies in our marriages. Let's not do that. Let's do what God says and what he's called us to, and he promises that he will protect us and care for us.
Right? Excellent insights from Kathy Laurie. So, Kathy, why don't you pray for all the marriages out there as we close? Father, we are so grateful that we don't do marriage alone, that we as believers, there's a third person in this, and it's you.
It's your Holy Spirit who is maturing us and conforming us into your image, and, Lord, that's what we want more than anything else. We are here for each other and with each other to help one another to become the people and the creation that you have designed us to be, to realize the beauty and the fulfillment of that role, not to substitute our role for their role or try to be everything, but to be what it is that you've called us to be as a complement, as a helper fit and designed by you to make marriage even better. So, Lord, we pray for a filling of your Holy Spirit for every wife out there. I pray for the marriages that are hanging by a thread, and we cannot control what our spouse is about to do, but we can control what we do. Help us to live out that role of Christlike love in our marriages, whether we're husbands or wives. Help us to realize the beauty and the glory that you promise that will be ours if we do things your way and we commit ourselves to you and the families of this church to you and the marriages, in Jesus' name, amen. Amen, God bless you all. Hey, everybody, thanks for listening to this podcast. To learn more about Harvest Ministries, follow this show and consider supporting it. Just go to harvest.org. And to find out how to know God personally, go to harvest.org and click on Know God.
Whisper: medium.en / 2022-12-23 19:25:20 / 2022-12-23 19:47:13 / 22