I am naturally a strong woman. So are all the women in our family, in usually most areas bar one.
Currently, I'm looking more and more towards living my life as a single woman (which is really not up for discussion as all I usually get is jeers and you-can't-do-its), but as this post has been in my head for some time, I figured I'd write it anyway.
Women all have some kind of guy-requirement list that they look for in a man, particularly in a man they'd like to marry.
Part of the "qualifiers" I look for in a guy are not just that he is a Christian, growing actively in God and seeking to put Him first in everything, not just that he is tender-hearted but wise, not just that he is thrifty but not stingy, but that he is stronger than me.
Believe me, that's very hard. *grin* I've only met two guys in my life that are.
My Achilles heel makes it so there has to be a guy who is stronger than me in my life. Most girls hate me when I say it, but to some degree, at least to me, most guys are fairly bendable. And that sounds weird to say.
He'll have his weak spots for sure, as I have mine. He's human; so am I. When love is true love, it loves unconditionally and forgives. But there's still wisdom required. Don't demand a perfect man; you're not a perfect woman. Don't demand a perfect woman; you're not a perfect man.
Marriage isn't meant for the other person to be the person you wish you were, but two flawed humans coming together to help each other grow towards God.
Like I said though - there is wisdom required. For example; looks are not a necessity; personal hygiene pretty much is. (I know that was pretty much a bad example, but you get what I'm saying.) Don't be looking for the things that will fade in a couple of years time; look for the God-seeking character. And don't forget they won't be perfect.
I hope this is coming out clearer than it feels. :P
Part of being a strong woman means being strong enough to choose to not contest my will against my husband's. The Biblical picture of marriage means letting him lead. It's not following behind him several steps and never venturing to express an opposite opinion.
It's supporting him in his decision and never saying I told you so when he makes the wrong one but still being there and encouraging him to carry on.
It's letting him make the decisions for the family and not taking that on myself.
It's easier when you're a more retiring person, that's for sure. ^_^
A marriage isn't a wedding for the good times and up to the times you start to argue - but nothing more than that. A marriage is a life-long union of growing together. And growing towards God and in God.
To have and to hold, from this day forward;
For better, for worse,
For richer, for poorer,
In sickness or in health,
To love and to cherish/to honour and obey
Til death do us part.
The bold parts are the harder parts. Cherishing is different to loving. Obeying is different to honouring.
I was walking down the road the other day, praying. Sometimes I randomly recite that wedding vow and repeat it. Which I did. And then was talking with God about it.
Suddenly it struck me how much of an unequal bargain it is. God's loving us.
Because as you know, and as I've detailed before, marriage is a picture of Christ's union with the church.
God takes us for worse, for poorer, in sickness, to love and to cherish.
And love doesn't always give us what we want, but it does always give us what we need.
We take Him for better, for richer, in health, and refuse to honour or obey.
*smiles a bit *
Everyone wants a superhero who saves people from their problems and struggles but comes through and knows the way they feel and tells them they're incredible.
Everybody loves the Doctor.
How many of those are happy about the idea that Someone like that might actually exist?
Oh no. We want someone like the Doctor.
Because the idea of Someone to whom we actually own allegiance is intolerable.
To this day man wants a false freedom. To decide right and wrong himself. To pick and choose his ruler, and even his Maker.
And oh, what trouble it brings when we try to run things instead of leaving it to an all-wise and all knowing God. Who is too good to be true and yet must be blamed for everything bad.
Unconditional love. Perfect trust and obedience. And simple, childlike faith.
God is good. And He loves us. Forever.