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Wives: What Submission Does (and Doesn’t) Mean

Spiritual leadership means the husband has the burden of responsibility. Its counterpart is the sort of biblical submission that encourages and equips the husband for that leadership. As Kathy’s example shows, submission can be an active and engaging trait—but in the end, someone has got to break the tie. I love how Tony Evans puts it: “Spiritual headship is God telling the woman to duck so he can punch the man.”

Spiritual headship is not license for men to do what they want to do. It is empowerment to do what they ought to do.

But, wives, that means you don’t only follow him when you agree with him or feel like he is making the right decision. That’s not submission; that’s agreement.

You may say, “Well, my husband is not a spiritual leader” and wonder what that means for how you follow him. But this verse doesn’t say, “Submit…when he is a sufficiently spiritual leader in your eyes.”

If your husband is not a spiritual leader, your submission to him in this way can help call him up into this kind of leadership.

As a wife, your biblical submission creates a vacuum that serves as an invitation. And when your husband does step up, you need to encourage him. Say things like, “That’s what I love in my man. Leadership.” Then watch him come alive.

When the two of you start to conduct your marriage this way, you will find that deeper joy you’ve been looking for. This is what happy marriages are made of!

For more, be sure to listen to the entire message here.

This article originally appeared here.