Being Transformed into HIS Image

"All of us! Nothing between us and God, our faces shining with the brightness of his face. And so we are transfigured much like the Messiah, our lives gradually becoming brighter and more beautiful as God enters our lives and we become like him." 2 Corinthians 3:18 (MSG)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Love and Respect

About three years ago, I was sitting in our living room, reading the book, Love and Respect, by Emerson Eggerichs, and becoming more convicted with every chapter. The book's theme comes from Ephesians 5:33, "Each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband (NIV)." Although I was familiar with that passage of Scripture and thought I was a good wife, I realized that I had not been doing a good job of showing respect to my husband.

As I was reading about love best motivating women and respect most powerfully motivating men, my husband walked into the room and asked what I was reading. When I told him it was about how wives need to respect their husbands, he snorted, saying, "You don't respect me at all." I tried to argue with that, but he just turned on the television. I walked over and turned off the TV, saying, "I'm sorry you feel that way. I want to change. Can't we talk about this?" He looked at me with what seemed like scorn and said, "What's to talk about? You haven't respected me during 22 years of marriage, Alexandra, and you just disrespected me by turning off the television. You’ll never change."

Well, that hurt. He clicked on the TV again, and I realized that while he hadn't been feeling respect from me, I hadn't exactly been feeling the love from him either. Since Eggerichs asserted that love and respect are the two key ingredients for a successful marriage, I feared for our marriage. I decided that I needed to start by showing respect for my husband and proving that I could change. First, I finished the Love and Respect book. Next, I studied all the Bible passages the book referred to, coming to the conclusion that what God wants for me goes beyond a simple respectful courtesy towards my husband; what God requires is a willingness to submit to my husband as my leader. After confessing my sin to God and asking for His help to change, I started looking online for practical helps in demonstrating respect and submission. Eventually, my search led me to a Christian Domestic Discipline website, where my eyes bugged out and my mouth gaped open as I read about wives who even submitted to being spanked by their husbands.

Thus began my journey into Domestic Discipline.