Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ loved the Church and handed Himself over for her to sanctify her. Ephesians 5:25
This is from Paul’s letter that admonished wives to be subordinate to their husbands and I used to get my arches up that all that was “commanded” of the husbands was to LOVE their wives. As I have grown in maturity and wisdom, I have come to realize that both of Paul’s directives carried much in the way of challenge. To truly LOVE is much harder than to be subordinate for there is no greater hardship than to truly LOVE!
Putting myself at the disposal of someone, giving myself to their comfort and acquiescing to their will may be what is “Required” of someone who is subordinate BUT to truly LOVE is to serve the needs and offer myself totally. To love is not only to place myself in service but to put myself second in all things. A very tall order indeed. Did St Paul not believe women were up to the task? Did he feel that motherhood would mean that women could only truly LOVE my children and not have the capacity to include the spouse so he asked me to just be subordinate to my spouse? When I truly grasp what LOVE means, I know that is the harder part of the two jobs.
As often as I hear this passage proclaimed, I detect more depth and nuance. God never puts limitations on me. St Paul wanted the Ephesians and me today to give myself as fully as possible to all that God is calling me to be. If I can love, serve and be more then I am bound to rise to the occasion. As I think so I am. My rebellion has waned when I realized what a gift LOVE is.
Lord help me to truly love my husband, my children and all who You place in my path. Help me to rise to the occasion. For in LOVE I am Yours!