Friday, January 25, 2008

Help Meet

A friend recently asked me about the use of the term "help meet" in the "About Me" section of the sidebar. So, I thought I'd give a bit of an explanation of what "Help Meet" means to me.

First, a quick thing it does NOT mean to me . . . it is NOT an endorsement of the book Created to be His Help Meet I haven't read the book, but I've read sufficient information about the book & it's authors to know that, while there may be "nuggets of wisdom" to be gleaned from it, I cannot, as a whole, endorse the book or the ministry behind it. I feel there are aspects of their teachings that aren't Biblical and have the potential for being dangerous!

So, with that disclaimer in place, here's what it means to me:

The term help meet comes from Genesis 2:18 And the LORD God said, It is not good that hte mand should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.

The NIV translates it "a helper suitable for him". So, in a nutshell, when I say I am my husband's "help meet" I am saying, that I am a helper suitable for him.

So, what is God's plan for a wife?

Ephesians 5:22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.

Colossians 3:18 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.

How can we, as Christians, think that God doesn't want us to submit to our husbands without claiming that the Bible isn't to be followed?

I Peter 3:5 For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own hubands.

But here's where some people take it too far. God does not say, "women, submit to all men" He says women are to submit to their own husbands. The fact that Mr. Saint at church thinks I should do such & such, doesn't mean I have to do it if I feel I shouldn't. God says that I am to submit to my own husband.

So how does God want women to help their husbands?

1 Timothy 5:14 I will therefore that the younger women marry, bear children, guide the house, give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully.

Titus 2: 4-5 That they teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.

God wants women to be "keepers at home" to me, that means, I'm "in charge" of getting healthy meals on the table, making sure my husband and children have clean clothes in the closet . . .and all the other little things that keep the house running. To another family the division of duties might be different.

But it's not a one way street. I like the way this article explains what the Man's role in a marriage is, so I'll just let you read it rather than trying to put it into my own words.

And my final thoughts.

Too many people (men AND women) get hung up in "what do *I* get out of it?!" Even on conservative Christian sites (that preach/believe in wifely submission) the focus is on what I "have to do" and "what I get out of it". So the men are focused on "she has to do what I want" and totally miss the "husbands love your wives" part of the equation (explained in great detail in the article linked above). And the women are either focused on "woe is me, I have to wait on my husband hand & foot, I don't like it, but this is what I have to do to go to Heaven . . ." OR they turn it around and focus on "yes, but my husband HAS to treat me right!" Some women/sites take it a step farther and counsel women on how to manipulate their husbands into THINKING they are "head of the house" while really they're just the wife's puppet. That, IMO is even less in keeping with God's will than the woman who "wears the pants in the family", because at least she's not being dishonest about it. But here's my thought. Stop focusing on ME. Stop worrying about HAVING to serve your husband, or gloating about your husband HAVING to honor you. And truly internalize this verse:

Ephesians 5:24, 25 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;

So we are to use the church & Jesus as our model. Does Jesus "lord it over the church" that He is the head? No. Neither should men lord it over their wives. Jesus gave His all for the church, and men are instructed to love their wives like Jesus loved the church, so they are to give their all for their wives. We, as Christians (the church), should submit to Christ, not because we "have" to, but because we love Him and want to serve Him and please Him. Likewise, as wives, we should "serve" our husbands, not out of obligation, or because of what we'll get out of it, or even "because we have to" but because we love them and want to serve them and please them.

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