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Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Playing the 'ABUSE' Card


This pic looks like it's the other way around. - Aug 2013

It never fails to astound me how many (Catholic/Christian) women and even men, bring up the "abuse" card whenever I talk about my decision to biblically submit to my husband, as unto the Lord. (Ephesians 5:22

Some will remark:

"Have you seen the figures of how many battered women there are, out there?"

"Have you visited the center for abused women, who were beaten by their husbands?"

"If a woman submits to her husband, this might pave the way for marital abuse!"


* * * * *

But the question that begs to be asked is this: 

ARE YOU IN AN ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP?
A godly man should love his wife as the weaker vessel, and must never abuse her!

If you are, then I would be the first to say to go find solace and protection from your nearest spiritual leader, priest, pastor, preacher, policeman, NGO, etc.... Do find somebody who can intervene for you and help you. While I do not agree with divorce since the Bible is clear on that (Malachi 2:16), I do agree wholeheartedly with physical separation while the husband in question, is not yet in his right frame of mind due to any one of the following reasons: substance abuse, extreme clinical depression, demonic oppression/possession, and the like. I believe that there will be times when one really has to physically alienate oneself from that kind of husband because the wife is dealing with the addiction/mental disorder/spiritual oppression; and not anymore with the man per se. It would be dangerous and even life-threatening to stay in such cases. Leaving becomes the only option as a drastic measure.

A husband who is abusive to his better-half has failed in his own God-ordained roles to provide, protect and love his wife as Christ loved the Church (and was willing to die for Her), and the wife has every right to protect herself and her children from such a man, until such time that he has regained full control of himself and his faculties:
Wedding Day - Apr 17, 2004
Husband as:
          PROVIDER  
"Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever” (1 Timothy 5:8).
          PROTECTOR
“Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them” (Colossians 3:19). 
         “Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers” (1 Peter 3:7). 

LOVER 
25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing[a] her by the washing with water through the word,27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church— 30 for we are members of his body.  (Ephesians 5:25-30)

Having said that, let me go back to the thing that astounds me most about men and women in these modern times when I talk about biblical submission -- (I was guilty of this too in the past, before the Lord opened up my spiritual eyes to my rebellion and lack of faith in His Sovereignty) people usually bring out the "abuse card".
The abused "abuse card"

If your husband does not make you his punching bag, or verbally beats you down to pieces, or ties you up, or locks you in cages... but is just the "normal" kind of husband who is just not that affectionate by your standards, not that good a provider by your standards, not as macho or protective of you by your standards, but is generally kind and decent, please DO NOT PLAY THE ABUSE CARD. 

If one plays that card just to justify prideful, self-righteous and judgmental behavior, ("He is not very good at decision-making"; "I am better than him at making money."; "He is not very intelligent.", "He is so immature!"; etc.) let's just call a spade a spade, and be forthright in admitting that this is NOT about being concerned about those who are really in very pitiable marital circumstances, as this is about one's OPEN REBELLION against God and His God-ordained authorities over us wives -- our husbands. 

Hebrews 13:17
Obey your leaders, and accept their authority. They take care of you because they are responsible for you. Obey them so that they may do this work joyfully and not complain about you.
(Causing them to complain would not be to your advantage.)
1 Cor 11:3

However, I want you to realize that Christ has authority over every man, 
a husband has authority over his wife, and God has authority over Christ.
My husband has authority over me. I signed into it. - April 17, 2004

Let's be honest that this is just about not wanting to give up the "high" from being in CONTROL. That this is about not wanting to leave things in God's Hands, and in our husbands' hands -- to lead, to protect, and to provide for us. 

Let's be honest that this is a plain and simple refusal to submit to God, which is evident in one's refusal to submit to one's spouse.

For it is written:

Ephesians 5:22-33 part:

22 Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. 23 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. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.
31 “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”[b]32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
Our complete family - August 2013
I chanced upon this very enlightening post in the site, All About God. Allow me to share it with you verbatim:

"The role of the wife is clearly described in the Bible. Although males and females are equal in relationship to Christ, the Bible gives specific roles to both the husband and the wife in marriage. 

I love my role!
As wives, we are given these roles, among others:

  • Mentors - Titus 2:4-5 says, "Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God."
  • Witnesses - 1 Peter 3:1 says, “Wives, in the same way be submissive to your husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives.
  • Examples 1 Timothy 3:11 says, "In the same way, their wives are to be women worthy of respect, not malicious talkers but temperate and trustworthy in everything."

     Role of the Wife in the Bible – The Design Order of the Family Unit
When studying the role of the wife in the Bible, it is important to understand how God designed the family unit. There are ranks described --
 Christ, 
the husband, 
the wife, and then 
the children.
 You would not expect to walk into a doctor's office and be greeted by the doctor, measured and weighed by the receptionist, and then treated by the nurse. Right? There are certain orders to things because that's what works. It's the same way with God's design in the family unit. It works smoothly, when done His way.
Beth, a wife, explains it this way,
    “The role we have as wives is that of encouraging and helping our husbands. When we try to make it any more, or any less, that's when we run into trouble. My mom used to teach a young married couples class, and I will never forget her most ‘valuable nugget’ of truth. She always told them that the husband is the head of the home, and the wife is the neck. The neck supports the head, and helps the head to fulfill its duties.”     "
    Dong is the head. Nikka is the neck(a)! :)
_______________________________________________________________________
Let's stop abusing the "abuse card", dear sisters in Christ. 
It is a sad reality, yes, (and my heart goes out to those who are in abusive marriages) but if it is not YOUR reality, then please open your heart and mind to God's beautiful design for marriage, and stop playing that card just to escape from God's commandment to submit to your husband.
It is freeing, liberating and bondage-releasing!
I "played that card" too quite often in the past, when I was in open defiance against God and my husband. Honestly, it got old quite fast. :( I was miserable, bitter, depressed, angry, and always worried about the future. :(
Thank God, I have thrown it out since September 1, 2013,  and am playing a new deck now -- where I am Queen and my husband is King, and Christ is the Ace up our sleeves. :) 
A Family Dinner at our Home with the King and Queen and their two Jacks and two Jills (hehe),
 with Christ at center (the Light!). :)  - October 2013

May we all be richly blessed! :)
   

6 comments:

  1. Another well meaning but unhelpful thing Christians say is, "Jesus never told us to be doormats." I've heard this so many times as a justification for divorce and because it's so subjective, anything (even non physical abuse ) can classify as doormat treatment.

    If our view of submission is one that is to The Lord first and then to our husbands (or other earthly authority), we would not feel like doormats since our submission to earthly authority is in obedience to God.

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    1. I agree with you, Genie.

      One thing I have seen, as evidence of my former controlling nature, and my having played out the "abuse card" as well in the past, as in: "Submit? What about those who are being abused by their husbands?! That's the REASON why women get battered!!!", as MY reason for not submitting.... was that, there is a correlation between trusting in God's Sovereignty and submitting to my husband.

      If my view of God is one to Whom I should not submit to, as evidence of my wanting to do things MY way, according to MY will, in MY time... because I do not believe that He could take care of me or help me make things happen (Stupid and prideful, I know.:( ), all the more I will not submit to somebody fallen and sinful and human -- my earthly authority, my husband. If I could NOT submit to my heavenly authority, how much more could I NOT submit to a mere earthly one.

      It was when I got to know Who GOD really is/was/will be forevermore, did I see myself - a nobody, a nothing, a speck of dust... and yet He loved me! -- did I submit to Him fully. Then, I submitted to my husband.

      We practice biblical submission because we have submitted to God, and we want to follow Him. We don't just submit to our husbands, without FIRST submitting to God. In this journey, it is all about following Christ. It gets muddled up when it becomes all about one's spouse and nothing about God. The wife risks having the husband as 'idol' and the husband risks thinking of himself as a god! Therein lies the danger of going into the abusive territory. If both husband and wife know that they are both under Christ's authority, then, they will be able to find so much joy and peace from God's Design for marriage. :)

      Biblical submission is so weird and counter-cultural and even "cultish" to most women nowadays. It's a narrow path we tread, but I will rather die than to go back to my former "fun and fearless female" self! I was so rebellious towards God and I had no idea!

      Thanks for dropping a line. Your thoughts are always welcome. :)

      Nikka

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  2. Yes!! Submission only makes sense if it is carried out in obedience to God because it means I am trusting in His sovereignty and obeying his word even if my husband does not treat me as I would want him to treat me. I know people who say, "I've tried submission and it didn't work!" Or, "I can't submit because my husband isn't treating me in a Christlike way." The beauty of submission is that we are trusting not in our husbands or that our marriage will be perfect, but in God and in his goodness and love for us. We are concerned not with our husbands behavior but with our obedience to God. There is an amazing sense of peace and release in that and it reminds me of how Jesus said that His yoke is easy and his burden is light. Even if the husband is ungodly or uncaring, we can submit (in everything but sin and personal harm to ourselves or children). There's a freedom to that, paradoxically!

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    1. Amen, Genie!!! :) The peace! Aaaaahhh.. Christ's Peace. :) It's not of this world, that's for sure. :)

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  3. Bible scholars often tell that meekness is bridled strength. It means actually that you are very, very mature and strong when you are meek because you are able to control and direct your own strength.

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    1. Agreed. :) I love those words - bridled strength. Beautiful!

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Feel free to comment. I would love to discuss things with you. :)