Tuesday, June 4, 2013

In which Mike also comments and is a man of valor

Mike did something crazy tonight!

What was this craziness??

He commented on a blog. 0.0

Someone posted a link to this lady's commentary on how to be a godly wife on Facebook today. I skimmed it and immediately closed the window and then hid the link on Facebook to avoid the comments and likes because it's just better if I don't work myself into a frothing rage over people I don't know, even if their views are becoming disturbingly commonplace. I didn't think about it again until this evening when I told Mike how I avoided working myself up and he said I should check out the comments again.

Apparently people need to keep writing these kinds of blog posts because we've had some great talks between this one and the bikini lady. We talked about a lot that would just be boring for you to read about but it was good stuff, mainly on how, like I wrote yesterday, it's important for there to be relationship and dialog when talking to people about how they "should" live. Blog posts aren't an amazing way to lay down law. We also agreed that more men need to be in support of women when it comes to issues of equality and I appreciate him taking steps to be that voice, especially since his personality is to chill out and let the crazy people like me rage and flail about. Here's what he wrote:

Very interesting & commendable post. You have laid out some wonderful attributes & principles that folks should absolutely strive toward.

I would however like to bring up one point: Almost everything you laid out there can absolutely apply to a husband! (Maybe not point 5 as it deals with the Proverbs 31 woman but still the principles she embodies are admirable regardless of your gender.)

1) Keep God first, your spouse second: Totally agree. As a husband God is my first love with my wife second!

2) Understand the covenant: This is a sacred oath & it's my duty as a Christ follower to honor it. Man or woman!

3) Submission but for my reasoning I'm going to user the term Service: This is certainly a contentious area in our modern culture & you're right that these words have taken on a negative connotation. Though we may have differing roles, the idea of submission/service speaks to the laying down of our rights. As a Christ follower (husband or wife) we should seek to serve & love one another with selflessness. I fear that as Christians we sometimes put so much emphasis on "submit to your husband" that we make it seem as if the husband has no obligation to serve his wife. On the contrary we husbands are to love our wives as Christ loved the Church and He exemplified this through His countless acts of service and His commandments to serve and love others throughout the world!

4) Speak edifying words: Another wonderful & universal principle! Bless your spouse with words of praise!

5) Proverbs 31 woman: Like I mentioned earlier, a bit tough to draw a totally direct comparison but I believe we're shown here a woman of honor and valor here living a life with excellence. Even as a man, I should desire this type of ethos in my own life!

6) Do it anyway: All about loving and serving unconditionally. Again, a wonderful principle for all of us! I do disagree though with your statement that it's not your job as a wife to discipline or correct a husband. If I'm acting wrong or doing something sinful then I would absolutely want my wife (my helpmeet! my companion!) to call me out and speak truth in love to me! (As I should do for her if she is sinning.) As my sister in Christ I would hope that she would help me to get out of that sin before the Lord himself has to do something more drastic!! :)

7) Communicate: Yup, you better practice it and do it for your marriage to be healthy! Semi-coherent grunts don't count...

8) 80/20 principle: A great point as this is also a huge danger to men. Always let your heart be captivated by your wife! So many warnings in scripture about letting our eyes and minds wander.

9) Strive to please: I'm glad you mentioned that you think it's not okay for the husband to let himself go. This again speaks back to your points in 3 & 6 that circle around loving unconditionally. Even though I may LOATHE watching Pride & Prejudice, I'm going to do it for my wife because I love her!

10) Cover in prayer: Absolutely. We'll never make it as individuals or as a couple if we don't seek out our Lord's help in our life and in our spouse's. Husbands, pray for your wives!

So those are my thoughts as a husband. Hope that's helpful to some! 

Of course, because I'm meaner than Mike, I disagree with "interesting and commendable," ha! I read stuff like "We are SO selfish and self-centered, we are ALL about ME and what others can do for us. We think we ‘deserve’ so many things" and I feel my eye start to bleed because, as Mike pointed out, it's humans. Human are self-centered. And, I'd wager that not all humans, including some women, struggle with selfishness. But, I understand that Mike's goal is to meet people where they are and, while I am working on that, I'm not as good at it as he is. Also, YOU KNOW YOU LIKED PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, MIKE!

Is it sinful for me to post this?

By the way, speaking of men's voices, I came across El Blog de Blake last night and he wrote about that bikini post from a man's perspective. I really want to cut and paste the entire last half of Blake's post but here's just a small snippet:
If a guy is going to lust after and objectify women, a little more fabric on their bodies is not going to fix that. A trash bag couldn’t fix that. Telling girls to avoid wearing bikinis in public places where guys will be is like cutting away the branches, but unless the root is dug up, the problem will remain. Not to mention that the same kind of steps aren’t being taken with the swimwear of the men.

Plus there's the fact that most men aren't slobbering jerks. The funniest-in-a-terrible-way exchange I saw on Facebook when I posted the link to Patheos was this:

Female Friend: Hey, Male Friend, how do you control your man-urges to attack women?
Male Friend: I'm an engineer:

Oh, and for anyone wondering about the Man of Valor thing, there's a book we're reading in our group called A Year of Biblical Womanhood (kindle version) by Rachel Held Evans. She talks about women of valor:

“A woman of valor who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.”
- Proverbs 31:10
Eshet chayil—woman of valor— has long been a blessing of praise in the Jewish community. Husbands often sing the line from Proverbs 31 to their wives at Sabbath meals. Women cheer one another on through accomplishments in homemaking, career, education, parenting, and justice by shouting a hearty “eshet chayil!” after each milestone.  Great women of the faith, like Sarah and Ruth and Deborah, are identified as women of valor.
One of my goals after completing my year of biblical womanhood was to “take back” Proverbs 31 as a blessing, not a to-do list, by identifying and celebrating women of valor: women who are changing the world through daily acts of faithfulness, both in my life and around the world.

Later, Sarah Bessey added man of valor:
Men of valour! for standing up for, and with, us. We see you loving the women in your life well, we see you honouring us–your wives, your sisters, your mothers, your grandmothers, your daughters, your friends–we see you serving with abandon, we see you hungering for justice, we see your dedication to true purity, to wisdom, to knowledge, to honour, to respect, to beauty, to mercy.

So, there you go! Mike: Ish Gibor Chayil!

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