Sunday, April 27, 2008

Quiet Moments With God--Colliding Rivers

When reading through scripture it’s not okay to skip over the difficult verses. Today, I read from Ephesians 5:22, which says, Wives submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.

My guess is that this verse has raised more than a few disputes in churches and households across our nation. I’ve struggled to understand just what God is saying to me as a wife.

My personality is not conducive to submission. My sister Myrn once compared me to one of two rivers that run through our community. The first is a small river called Little River and the other, the North Umpqua, is large and powerful. The two collide, meeting head on at a place we call Colliding Rivers. It’s an unusual phenomenon. In my discussion with my sister, she said, “Bonnie, you are like the Umpqua and I’m like Little River.” I was floored by her statement, mostly because I didn’t view our relationship that way or see her as “a little river".

If I'm going to be honest with myself, then I must agree with my sister's perspective of my personality. I tend to be strong-minded, which can be a good thing, but sometimes not so good.

So . . . when the Lord says I’m to submit to my husband, Greg, it’s like fingernails on a chalk board. Why should I be the one to submit?

Read on to verse 25. It says, Husbands love your wives just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her. Hmm. That sounds sacrificial. After all, Christ gave his life for the church.

I’ve been given a husband who is to love me unconditionally and sacrificially. Greg doesn’t get it right all the time, but he tries. He’s loved me when I haven’t deserved it and he's given much of himself to me in our thirty-six years of marriage. Why then, does it rankle me to submit to that kind of love?

The answer is easy; because I make it about me.

My husband and I are both imperfect. We struggle and sometimes just like the two rivers in our community we bump heads. More often than not we mesh and continue downriver working together in harmony, being a team just as God intended. And sometimes when we get it really right we become refreshment to those around us, just like the cool waters of the river that flows into the valley.

God is wise and His plans are admirable and reasonable. If we would only listen and obey we might be surprised at the beauty that can be created between two people, neither of which is better than the other, but who are linked by honor and love and submission to each other.

When we truly love another it always comes back to bless us. So, may you love well and be blessed.

Grace and peace to you from God.


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