Thursday, September 20, 2012

Hard Concept - Make Me a Wife

“God will make you into a wife before he sends you a husband.”

I got that from my pastor (although I can’t say for sure he didn’t read it or hear it somewhere else). And then he asked us to pray, as he often does, “Lord, make me a wife.”

I distinctly remember when he first said this. Maybe two years ago, he was preaching and he made that statement. Everything I had built up in myself about independent women and what we stand for and who we are and are not, all of that rose up and got angry at his statement.

“Make me a wife”?!?!? Um, no. “If a man can’t handle me on my worst day, he doesn’t deserve me on my best.” Y’all have surely heard that. I am just fine the way I am. I do this and this and this and know this and this and this, God shouldn’t have to change me into some strange archetypal Proverbs 31 woman that I’m not in order for someone to want to marry me? Why can’t I just be me?

Does that sound crazy, or relatable?

It took me until approximately March of this year to understand that this wasn’t an insult or a personal attack on my character or nature.  I had to read Captivating again, and realize that being a wife is what woman was created to do (the fall is what made this hard; there is no flaw in the design) because being a wife is the closest you can be to a man without being God. I had to go through the motions in my head for months before I finally saw what my pastor was saying.

If you’re doing things God’s way, you won’t have to struggle to transition from being single (not alone but all-one, my pastor says). You don’t have to learn everything after the wedding, you can learn much of it, specifically the spiritual posture, the attitude and the outlook beforehand.  The first few years of marriage can be more bliss than burden when you’ve done your work upfront.
Here’s a behavioral example. I have always been a proficient cooker who knew how to make my own favorite foods, but I’ve never been great. I used to mess around with a guy who always said he couldn’t date a woman who couldn’t cook. My attitude was, “if my cooking skills are the deal-breaker, then we would never last. That’s petty.” And to an extent it is petty. I was also more upset about the potential rejection than the statement/ideology itself.
Now, I am getting better at cooking all the time. I cook because I realized that it’s cheaper and healthier and I actually kind of like it. I’m a creative; it’s edible art! I decided to start cooking for myself. That’s a behavior that has changed in me. I was not in any type of relationship at the time I decided to make the change.  But I guarantee you that my future-husband will appreciate my desire to feed and sustain him. Not only do I find pleasure in it now, but I can sow it as a seed into my future marriage. What if acts of service is his love language?  It is a service I will provide for the man and the family I love, but it started in me bettering myself for myself.

The idea of “becoming a wife” took years for me to understand. But I fully believe that my spiritual and emotional transition from single to married is well underway and that I’m over the hardest parts.

It may feel wrong, but I challenge you with this: If you ever want to be married, ask God to show you what it really means to be a wife. Read Captivating; it’ll help. And then pray, “Lord, make me a wife.” He answers prayer, you know.

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