And you will desire to control your husband,
but he will rule over you.” Genesis 3:16
Today’s post is from a sharp woman named Jennifer. She blogs over at UnbrokenWoman.com. When it comes to respecting, she totally “gets it.” You should totally check her out! I am taking a small break this week, but will be back next week to interact with you on these things. She will respond to questions here today. Careful not to get your knickers in a knot – pay attention to what she does NOT say, as well, and watch out for that other guy as you read through this one! Whether you agree or disagree, it’s good to wrestle through some of these ideas with the Word. Remember to be respectful in your dialogue today!
“My husband is so controlling!” These words are uttered by many women who sit down to talk with me about their marriage struggles. I’ve seen women walk away from their controlling husbands more than I care to drudge up in my memory. I also struggle with wanting to put my husband in his place when his dominance feels a little overbearing. In fact, there have been times it has pushed me to the point of wanting to walk away. However, being that I am a lover of all things marriage related and spend an incredible amount of time helping people make their marriages work, I have instead decided to attempt to understand men. Men aren’t as simple as the world tries to make them look. They are actually complex and intelligent creatures wanting to be understood and appreciated just as much as we women do.
There is a major difference between control and Genesis 3:16 dominance/headship over a woman. Control, as we deem it in society, is usually obsessive, abusive, possessive, and a complete disallowance of another person to have their own identity. In short, it’s usually derivative of severe codependency issues and seeks to destroy another person to the point of relying solely on that person for their every emotional and physical need. I have been studying marriage and talking with those in struggling marriages for over a decade. This real controlling, overbearing husband is a rarity. What I do find are unbalanced alpha males or healthy, balanced alpha males paired with Genesis 3:16 wives who refuse to submit to the fact that “he will rule over her,” or many other combinations that create a very unhealthy environment for all involved. To sum, I mostly find households of misunderstanding and a society unwilling to submit to the way God created men. The alpha male is misrepresented, misunderstood, and usually mistreated.
In reading and studying Genesis, we all know and attest that God created this world. What we don’t often see is that he created very few things. He made many things out of the few things He created. Time nor space allows me to get into that in a way that will please many so I encourage you to read Genesis and see how He created few things but made many things out of the few things He created. Often we hear from Evolutionist that there is a common DNA significance in all living things thus proving Evolution when really, that is evidence that God created few things, made many things out of the few things He created and it is evidence of one, single creator of all. The redundancy of this paragraph is not by accident.
7 Then the Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground. He breathed the breath of life into the man’s nostrils, and the man became a living person. ~Genesis 2:7
God created men and in Genesis 1:26 He explains that He created them in His image, “to be like us”. He made women from men and He does say that both were created in His image. But, like most things that were made from the few things He created, men and women are very different. I am guessing before the fall we weren’t as different as we are today but women and men are two separate creations. We are not the same. We have similar characteristics and similar DNA that is a constant reminder of our one, single creator but we are not equals in make and model, just equal in the creator’s eyes. The war between the sexes comes straight from Genesis 3:16 and the war becomes a collective of smaller battles when we understand a significant difference lost in a society controlled by an enemy that seeks to destroy (1 Peter 5:8).
Secular studies have found common traits of alpha males and after reading over them and researching them, my blog partner and I discovered that secular studies pointed to the fact that our Creator, created men (males), in His image! A healthy alpha male will have God-like characteristics. This is not because he is God, but He was created to be “like God.” I desired this post to have that list in here but it grew much too long. Please take a moment to read over these traits and their correlating Bible verses on my site. http://unbrokenwoman.com/2013/05/controlling-men.
Those who do not know or understand God often refer to Him as “controlling” and lacking mercy and grace. The enemy defines God as controlling, lacking of mercy and grace. Believers know this is not true. In fact, the way God designed men and women in context to His desired relationship with us is phenomenal when we tear away the societal strings attached to some Biblical and very beautiful terminology that defines men, women, and marriage we will find peace and unity within our homes.
God created human beings, in His image, to be like Him (Genesis 26). He gave us a personal relationship with Him and blessed us beyond our comprehension. His love is unconditional, unrelenting, merciful, full of grace, and sacrificial even to the point of death (1 John 4:9). The only thing He asked for was obedience (Genesis 2:15-17) from his “bride.” Then the fall happened and we were disconnected from each other and from God. He sent His son to forge that companionship back but we lost the tangible, physical relationship we had with God when we chose disobedience. God, in His infinite mercy and wisdom, did something marvelous.
Remember, men were created by God and healthy men have many God-like characteristics naturally built into them. It’s not by accident then that in Ephesians 5:25-30 God calls husbands to love their wives unconditionally, unrelenting, mercifully, full of grace and sacrificially even to the point of death. It is also not by accident that what He asks for of wives is obedience (Ephesians 5:22-24). Because of the fall, God could no longer walk with us in the physical as He did with Adam and Eve in the garden so he created a physical, tangible relationship that in perfect unity mirrors the relationship He longs to have with us. God (bridegroom) loves, we (bride) obey. Husbands love, wives obey. It’s cyclical and just like God to still reach down and wrap us up in His love with a real, tangible relationship that is like the supernatural one we have with Him.
Make no mistake, there is a real enemy that knows the threat of a healthy marriage. There is an enemy who knows that as long as we see our husbands as overbearing and controlling jerks, we will not submit nor will we demonstrate respect to them. He knows that a wife who emasculates and refuses to submit to her husband’s headship will almost always destroy the love the husband is called to give to her unconditionally. The reverse is also true. This destructive pattern is also cyclical and just like the enemy.
When I first began this post, I sought to define the negative aspects of control. What I found instead was control defined as, “The power to influence or direct people’s behavior or the course of events.” Doesn’t that sum up headship in the Biblical sense? Our husbands were given the power to direct and influence us just like God directs and influence us through His word and through divine appointments and relationships.
Maybe it’s time that we Titus women refuse to allow the enemy to define our men and our marriages and we adopt God’s definition of our men and our marriages. The enemy seeks destruction and isolation in relationships and God created unity and life in them.
I encourage, no I DARE, all of us to ask ourselves if our husband’s “controlling” nature might be more out of an attempt to lead and influence a Genesis 3:16 wife. I also encourage, I DARE, in marital conflict and discontentment to read and memorize these three verses: Genesis 3:16, 1 Peter 5:8, and Ephesians 6:12. This is how the enemy designed conflict in marriage.
I double dog dare us all to embrace this physical, tangible relationship that mirrors the supernatural one God has with us.
So what about you? What are your thoughts on Jennifer’s comments?