There has been much discussion in our lectures, small groups and homework each week, amongst the ladies currently participating in the Falling in Love Again With Your Husband study, on the practicality of putting what God’s word says about wives, into practice.

What the ladies are learning as they continue through this study is that putting many of the truths from scripture, about being a helper for her husband and submitting to him (Genesis 2 and 1 Peter 3), is requiring them to stop their current way of going about their day.

When asked “What has been the most difficult thing regarding this study up until now?” we saw very similar answers.

“Fully letting go of my wants and learning to devote myself to serve my husband, above myself,” current Thistlebend participant.

“I am having a difficult time changing my way of thinking. Society has played a huge role in shaping my beliefs,” current Thistlebend participant.

“Changing my thoughts about submission and being an independent woman,” current Thistlebend participant.

“Realizing I need to change,” current Thistlebend participant.

“Practicality—so good, but so hard to change the way I do things already,” current Thistlebend participant.

Submitting to God’s word and to your husband can be very hard, but not impossible. As these ladies and other participants can attest, putting our way of thinking aside and looking to the Lord for His guidance instead is a moment by moment surrender, but what’s sweet is that these ladies are not giving in!

We want to encourage you. If you are going through our Falling In Love Again With Your Husband study or perhaps doing another Bible Study or reading God’s word, but are struggling to understand it’s practicality in your life and how it can be truly lived out, as you can see, there are others here that can relate. Continue to keep seeking the Lord and asking Him for His grace. “But I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ,” (Philippians 1:6).

We believe that the truth of scripture can be taken to heart and brought to life by God’s grace.  Jesus, as He was speaking about obeying His commandments and abiding in Him said, “These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full,” (John 15:11). If you need help to know how to bring God’s truth to life in our own life, in day-to-day living, we would love to hear from you!



What do you think of when you hear the word submission, as in submitting to your husband? Do you think, “fear,” or “giving up control?” I can relate to both of these. But my prayer now, after being in this study, Falling in Love Again With Your Husband, is that I would think, “Freedom!” I would love to submit to my husband in such a way that I feel FREE—free from the burdens of making decisions I don’t need to make, and more importantly, to let my husband carry the responsibilities he is called to carry. I really don’t have to do everything!

This past week, I wanted to focus on specific actions I could take to purposefully show respect to my husband. I intentionally went to him with issues I would normally take to a friend and asked his opinion. I texted him to tell him I appreciated and loved him. I thanked him versus instructing him when he completed a task very differently than I would have. I am praising God for this study because I am seeing the many ways my words and actions towards my husband are not respectful to him or glorifying to God.

This week, Laurie gave us a beautiful illustration. She told us the Trinity—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—provide the ultimate model for relationships within the body of Christ and for marriage.  What a beautiful example! They are three separate beings but also ONE. They are co-equal but have different roles. They show us how unity and distinction can co-exist perfectly.

If we apply that model to human relationships, specifically marriage, we see that God created man first, in His own image. He then created woman, also in His own image, but as a helper for man. “Then the LORD God said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper who is just right for him,’” (Gen 2:18 NLT). And who helps the woman?  The Holy Spirit, who is present in all believers, who helps us in countless ways be more obedient to God’s Word and will.

This is of huge importance, because it shows that God did not create women as inferior beings to man. We are co-equals with our husbands, but we are to fulfill different roles; roles the Lord Himself has ordained. The husband is to love his wife as Christ loved the church and to be willing to lay down his life for her.  The wife is to submit to her husband and lovingly be his helpmate.  “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord… Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her…” (Ephesians 5:22, 25).

I know the topic of submission can make unbelievers angry and dismiss Christianity as irrelevant.  Believers may feel uncomfortable broaching the topic. It’s very emotionally charged because our culture bombards us with messages that women are oppressed by men. I am praying that as believers, we can walk out 1 Peter 3:1-2 (NIV), “Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own 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, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives.”  I am praying the Lord gives us a gentle and quiet spirit which will help us to be Christ to our husbands and to the world around us.  We need the Word of God, not the world, to serve as our compass.

May we revere our husbands and the calling the Lord has placed upon His life, remembering it is a very high calling indeed.

Growing in Grace

“Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So, when he heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was” (John 11:5-6).

“So when Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, but Mary remained seated in the house. Martha said to Jesus, ‘Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died'” (John 11:20-21).

“Then Jesus, deeply moved again, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone lay against it. Jesus said, ‘Take away the stone.’ Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, ‘Lord, by this time there will be an odor, for he has been dead four days.’ Jesus said to her, ‘Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?’ So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, ‘Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around, that they may believe that you sent me.’ When he had said these things, he cried out with a loud voice, ‘Lazarus, come out.’ The man who had died came out, his hands and feet bound with linen strips, and his face wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, ‘Unbind him, and let him go’ (John 11:38-44).

Lazarus had died and Martha and Mary were devastated. They had lost their brother and fully believed that things would have been different if only Jesus had arrived sooner.

When I read through these passages I get a bit angry. I know how it ends, so the anger doesn’t last long. I know Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead and I understand why He did what He did, but I get angry because I know how Mary and Martha must have felt. In this last season of my life I feel just like them. I keep thinking, Lord if you had been here sooner then I wouldn’t be in this situation, my husband wouldn’t be searching for a job, I wouldn’t have been rear ended on the highway. The list could go on and on, situation after situation. Feeling like the Lord missed the mark on His timing.

I am like Martha in so many ways. When she hears Jesus is coming she goes out to the gate to meet Him. She even says to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.22 But even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you.” Martha knows the truth. She has spent time with Jesus and she understands what He has been teaching. I can relate to her here. Every morning I get up and spend time with the Lord and I pray to Him, “Lord I know that you will provide in your timing” or “Lord I believe you are the way, truth, and life.” And truly I do know (head knowledge) those things. The problem is connecting them to my heart and making it personal.

The other day it hit me. Like Martha, I believe what God’s word says and I know His truth but I am not really applying it to MY life.  I’m missing what He’s telling me. The truths that I pray and know in my head can be lived out in my everyday life. God can do more than I hope or imagine (Ephesians 3:20). I love in John 11:39 when Jesus asks them to move the stone away. He is getting ready to raise a man from the dead for crying out loud, couldn’t He just point his finger and make the stone completely disappear? But again, what a sweet Lord we have. I think He wanted to involve Martha and Mary in this. He wants them to take a step of faith and show Him that they trust He can perform this miracle. He didn’t ask much of them but He asks a small task, “Take away the stone.”

What is God asking you to do? For me, He wants me to believe that He is in control, that He is never late. He wants us to take a step of faith and just like with Martha, He will be right there with us when we do. He wants us to step out in faith and ”move the stone.” I challenge all of you to read John 11: 1-44. This story is one we’ve heard a lot, and may tend to overlook, but is so miraculous, and so important. Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead so that those in the crowd, and Martha, and Mary, and me and you, could see the glory of the Father, and know that he sent Jesus to unbind all of us.

Standing on the Word