Roles of Spouses
I would like to know what you do when your husband doesn’t take the lead in your marriage, do you stay or do you leave?
Get marriage counseling. Get in a good church. Ask him to lead in the marriage. Don’t leave him, but work with him to get him to the place where he really is the leader. Put that demand on him and tell him, “Look, I really need you to lead.” And if that’s the only problem, then get him in front of a church and into a Pastor’s office where he can show him the simple steps to being a man. Tell him he’s got to do it.
Roles of Spouses
My husband says he’s saved. He doesn’t go to church. I’m trying to walk in love. We’ve been married for five years. Is there some type of a Scripture or some type of encouragement to continue on when your spouse is not willing to sharing parental duties as far as raising our daughter or housework, financial responsibilities, the whole gamut? We had agreed on how we would handle financial and different aspects of marriage. It doesn’t come to pass and I keep bringing it up. We continually have those types of discussions and it doesn’t come to pass.
That’s a tough situation and I’m going to stand with you on that. First of
all, you need to know the power of prayer and you need to have confidence in
your confession. “Don’t throw away your confidence,” Hebrews chapter 10 says,
“because it has a great recompense of reward.”
So if you’ve been standing on the Word of God and believing God and praying for
your husband, I believe that he can come around. I do think that the way
marriage works most successfully is when you go into a marriage and you have a
series of agreements that both parties believe in and commit themselves to. Amos
3:3 says, “How can two walk together unless they’re in agreement?”
You guys got into the marriage, got into the relationship and made some
agreements, but you fell apart somewhere along the line. Time passed and so what
you need to do now is have a “Come to Jesus” kind of a meeting with him. Say,
“Look, we need to talk about how we’re going to agree because we have to be in
agreement about how we’re going to live our lives and how we’re going to raise
our family.” And there are some things you can agree to disagree about, but as
far as carrying the load of responsibility, he’s going to have to come into
agreement with that again.
If over time, the agreements are not being kept, then that’s where you have to
go back and say, “alright, the basis for our relationship is going to be the
series of agreements that we make, whether it was two years ago or whether it’s
today, the basis of our relationship is going to be the series of agreements
that we make.”
Now you need to go back to him. You need to establish those agreements again and
put them on paper. And you need to say, “Now here’s what we’re going to do,
here’s where we’re going to agree, let’s talk about this. Let’s agree about
these things” and then if he agrees to agree with those things, then you say,
“Now, if for some reason one of us breaks this agreement and we don’t follow
through with it, that’s when we’re going to bring a moderator in, somebody to
help, a counselor or somebody who can help us live by these agreements and hold
us accountable, whether that’s somebody in church, whether that’s a professional
counselor, but somebody that will hold us accountable to those agreements.”
And then, if he’s not willing to do that, then you have to take it to the next
level. And that is, “Look, if we can’t agree, then how can two walk together?”
Amos 3:3. How can two walk together unless they’re in agreement? Look up that
Scripture. Try that. Put it on paper. If both people agree about it, both people
sign it. Marriage is the most powerful contract that people can make and yet we
don’t hold it nearly as valuable as we hold a real estate contract. When
somebody doesn’t follow the terms of that real estate contract, we take them to
court. They need to follow those terms. You need to make him follow the terms
that you guys agree about.
Roles of Spouses
I was calling because my husband is an unbeliever and I know that the husband is supposed to the spiritual head of the household. But I was just wondering, if you’re in a position like that, what is expected of the woman? I mean, there’s a lot of direction in the Bible for a man to be the spiritual head. Is it pretty much that you’re supposed to step in to that place then? And is it wrong then to lead him or to try to lead him?
Well, certainly, if he’s not being the spiritual leader of your life, you
have to, by default, be that leader for yourself and for your children. The
Bible doesn’t say that you have to leave your husband if he’s an unbeliever. It
says your children are sanctified if you stay with him because of your faith.
But, if he’s not leading your home in the Word of God and being the one who’s
taking the initiative, then by all means, you need to do that. Just like if a
man wasn’t taking the initiative to provide for your household, you would have
to do that. At that point, I would definitely not stay with a man if he was not
providing for your household the basic needs that you have for food, for
shelter, for clothing, for heat and all that. If he’s not providing those basic
needs for you and your family, then you shouldn’t stay in a situation like that.
But, when he’s not providing the lead spiritually, I think that you have the
capacity to go ahead and do that without violating anything in the Bible. It
would be better if he did lead you spiritually, but if he doesn’t, you still
need to grow spiritually, so take charge of that until he steps up and does so.
If he’s willing to follow, it’s not wrong until he becomes the leader. It’s
wrong to try to persuade him if he’s resistant, but if he’s open to talking
about it, by all means, talk to him and pray for him. Be humble, be submissive,
but by all means, talk to him if he’s willing to talk about it. If he’s not,
then don’t try to force it.
Roles of Spouses
What does the Bible say in regards to what you should do when your wife is constantly bucking up against you and being a hindrance instead of the supportive and submissive helpmate that she should be?
Number one, the Bible says you need to take the log out of your own eye
before you can see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. So
number one, you have to make sure you’ve dealt with yourself. Are you loving her
the way Christ loves the church? Are you treating her the way Jesus would treat
her if she were His wife?
Then secondly, get some tapes, get some counseling, get some books on marriage.
We’ve got tapes on “Building Your Marriage God’s Way” and “How to Have
Successful Relationships.” And talk to her. Say, “Hey look, let’s identify what
are biblical roles of a husband, what are the biblical roles of a wife and let’s
make sure we are lining up our lives with what God’s Word says.” You do that
with gentleness, with kindness, and then you get counseling if there is still no
progress there. Those are the steps that you would take. But it starts with
taking the log out of your own eye first.
Roles of Spouses
The Bible says that a husband is to love his wife as Christ loves the church, and the wife is to serve her husband. I know that both are equally important, and perhaps loving encompasses serving, but I just wanted to make sure I understand the significance, if any, of the distinction between the two—why a husband is to love and a wife is to serve.
I want to encourage you with the answer that I believe will help you to see
it from God’s point of view. And that is, what a woman needs from a man, more
than anything, is to know that she’s loved. What a woman needs from God is to
know that she’s loved, and that’s why the Bible says we’re to love our wife like
Christ loves the church.
In other words, we’re to be an example of God’s love towards her. And be patient
and kind and loving, according to 1 Corinthians 13, all of those things that are
in the Scripture. And the reason why it says that a wife is to submit to her
husband as unto the Lord is because the number one thing that a man needs in a
relationship is respect. And so, not that a woman doesn’t need respect, and not
that a man doesn’t need love, but God knows better than we know. And He speaks
to issues that will address the deeper needs that people have. And a man needs
to demonstrate love because his tendency is to love himself and his tendency is
to love football and his tendency is to love his buddies and his tendency is to
love food and his tendency is to love making money at his job.
And so God is saying, “Look, I know your tendencies and so I’m redirecting them,
so you know to focus on loving your wife like Christ loves the church.” And a
woman has a tendency to feel insecure sometimes, so she doesn’t want to submit
to somebody. She wants to submit to her feelings and submit to whatever she’s
going through at that time. God wants her to know how to submit and learn how to
submit to her husband. But it’s really unto the Lord. She’s demonstrating her
submission to God by submitting to her husband.
And really, the Bible says we’re to submit one to another. So there is a focus
on a man loving his wife like Christ loves the church, and there is a focus on a
woman submitting to her husband as unto the Lord. I hope that helps clarify that