Thursday, March 15, 2012

Reverence Him

I was thinking about those wonderful couples that seem absolutely precious. She is hanging on his every word and he looks at her as if there is no other woman on the face of the planet. How did they get that way and how is it that those sorts of couples that can work out their differences and stay together for actually the rest of their lives? Its effortless for them to resist the temptation of others and divorce was never an option. What did they do that the rest didn't get? Can we get it now? Would you like a marriage that can last forever? Can you see yourself with the same person FOREVER?

I suppose if you aren't actually infatuated with someone right now as you are reading this, it just doesn't seem plausible. Even if you did entertain the idea, who could you see yourself with? A better question, who could see themselves with you? While you ponder through that, I had to get real with myself. I thought about the possibility of being married to someone for the rest of my life and quite honestly, I never really thought about it until then. I mean, you get married and you deal with what ever you have to. Some is good and some isn't. If it gets so bad that you just can't take it anymore, you call it quits - right? Seriously, after awhile two people just grow up and realize that the interests aren't there as they use to be. The couple just grows apart. That's a real thing - right? I have heard it quite often - even in the church. So it has to be right - right? That's the progression of some couples. Its been happening for years. No one has taught otherwise. If they have - I guess I was absent that day.

There is no Word for what I was thinking and because I had no better answers then that, I had to go before the Lord in prayer and ask for Wisdom on the matter. I watched couples in social settings, as I have written before. I watched during the church picnics, bakes sales, dinners to events and gathering of the like; there, I watched as women came together and all did the same thing. They ran around like wind up dolls on caffeine to get their husbands and fiances whatever their hearts desire. They couldn't be more pleased to be able to serve their men and see them altogether with their chests puffed up at how their women can run and fetch them this or that. I watched and cringed. I did my best to accept this behavior in my early 20's thinking it is what is expected from the women even though I never took the Word out to read what is acceptable in the sight of God. Nevertheless, I was at home thinking like a good mother to get my sons use to this lifestyle that I obviously signed up for in taking those vows. I recall the twins in their highchairs waiting for Sunday morning breakfast. I had already given their father his (not at all privy to having breakfast at the table) and was finishing making their plate of eggs, grits, toast, sausage, and orange juice. I was about to make my own plate right after I set theirs down in front of them. They said their blessing and began to eat. All I was doing was finishing the eggs. I had already put everything else on the plate. I had my glass of juice at the ready to sit and have breakfast with my sons. No sooner did I have my plate on the table, I looked up and they were looking at my food. Their plates were clean and they were asking for more. Never again, I said to myself, as I separated my breakfast for my twin boys to have seconds. I will never give them a plate without already having mine made to sit with them. This is what I saw at those church functions. Those women were running around to exhaustion with a smile on their faces; especially the younger ones that just got married and felt they had this right of passage. They couldn't eat their own food for doing all of the running around for their husbands. The older women learned to get to the function early and sit amongst the mothers of the church and have their meal then.

The funny thing was there wasn't a complaint in doing all of that work. Believe me, as I watched them (and volunteered cooking) - it was hard labor. I wondered if they did this at home. At home, she wasn't wearing heels and spanks to keep it all tucked in with makeup and a newly coiffed do. At home, there weren't probing eyes and gossiping chatter of who was really happy and who was having whatever on the side. At home, there was the real woman who either was building her family up or pretending to be. At home, her husband was loving her as Christ loves the church or not.

Understand, when the man treats his wife like crap you can see it in her face no matter how much make up she puts on or how many times she practiced to smile through the pain - it is undeniable to most women. We cannot fool each other. When a woman doesn't reverence her husband, we can see this too. He comes to church before or after her in his own car and sitting with her is the last thing on his mind. He has been berated by her and feels emasculated because of her. Why then would he want to sit with her, protect her, or even pretend that he wants to be with her? For the sake of others? He wouldn't care about that unless he is a pastor and even then on the pulpit ( I have seen), the gloves are off. In front of everyone, he gets his revenge.

I recall one pastor from a ministry made mention of a bad habit his wife has. I don't know what it had to do with what he was talking about, he just happened to mention it. His wife was the church organist. She didn't blush or show any expression at all. When it came her turn to lead devotional service, the pastor was still at the podium and she happened to mention one of his faults as well. It had nothing to do with devotional service. She just decided to mention it too. I vaguely recall this, being a teenager and made to go to church by my mother. I usually sat in the back and got comfortable to take a nap. On that particular day - it was all the way live and I was sitting up wishing I had a closer seat. Devotional service never happened that morning. The pastor was so red with anger he could have busted in two. She was lighting into him (a figure of speech) in front of everybody! I heard the choir director ask, "what is happening?" Indeed. It wasn't over yet, the pastor had to get even. It was ug-ah-ly (Proverbs 14:1 AMP)!

In a different ministry, I was in my 20's. There was a pastor who made mention of his wife's body. He said something to the effect of, her stomach didn't always come through the door before she entered the room. There were one or two gasps before he continued with the sermon (Ephesians 5:28-29 AMP). In the vestibule the pastor's wife heard his comments. She then gave the other church ladies an earful of her husband's prowess. Why would she do that other than for revenge?Who wanted to know that? She was the first lady of the church! Why ruin your proper standing and being a good influence on the women with getting revenge? It didn't happen too often but often enough for some of the congregants to have their emotional outburst as well. I wondered how the pastor dealt with others behaving this way. How could he discipline them and what did they say in retaliation of the discipline? It was the makings of what one person coined the ministry as being, a soap opera.

The thing is with women, no matter what, if we don't desire to have the harvest that animosity brings, we have to reverence him anyway. The reason he acted the way he did could be your test or some harvest of an act you did and hadn't gone before the Lord about it yet. Just remember, for every action there is a reaction. It might not be immediate, but there will be a reaction. God sees all. Just when you think you got away with something, there it is to reward you or bite you in the hind quarters. For instance, recall when Michal decided to reprimand David for worshiping God in the streets? He had to talk candidly with her. Afterwards, he never treated her the same nor did she bare him any children. In fact, the bible mentions Michal one other time; after that - nothing (2 Samuel 6:20-23 AMP).

If it is truly your desire to date for the purposes of marriage, ask yourself if you can reverence him in the way God expects for you to do for the rest of your life. If your answer to the question is:

- what is he going to do for me?
- why does he get all of this favor?
- what if he doesn't need all of that?
- what about my needs?
- that sounds like hard work
- that's your opinion and not what is expected at all
- that was back then - this is a new day and a new generation, men aren't like that anymore

Then you might rethink dating. Like it or not, marriage changes things. No matter how someone decides to make a new thing in a marriage, the laws God has in place aren't going anywhere. In order for peace to be maintained, it automatically comes right back to the Word. It is a task that is expected of the woman. Subservience and obedience can be disputed due to the fact that he could be in the wrong based on the Word of God, but reverence maintains. Can you do it? If not, let him go so he can find his good thing.

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