Kate challenged me to answer this

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I'll get back to this later. maybe today, maybe tomorrow. However, please feel free to take up the challenge yourselves - either on your own blogs or in the comments of my or Kate's blog. (I'd say post it on HMS, where the whole meme started, except that they don't have comments boxes!
Here are the questions:

Read the passage from Ephesians 5:21-33:

21 Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
22 Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord.
23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.
24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.
25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her
26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word,
27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.
28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.
29 After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church—
30 for we are members of his body.
31 "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh."
32 This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church. 33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband
Answer these questions:

1. Why do you think this passage is such a incendiary one for women and men?

1 1/2. Was it ever that way for you? If so, how was your heart changed?

2. What is God trying to tell us through St. Paul in this scripture reading?

3. How does a misunderstanding or lack of understanding of God's plan for marriage revealed through this scripture damage marriages?

4. How can men and women come to understand it better?


As a husband who has fought this one through with a strong willed wife....

It is incendiary because it challenges each gender at their point of greatest difficulty.

To paraphrase Christopher West in his presentation on Theology of the Body: Some of Christ's own desciples rebelled at his teaching. "Ew!, that would mean that I will have to remain married to the same woman for my entire life". Humorous but accurate. Husbands love your wives. Especially at those times you don't particularly like them. (or more properly - you don't like their behaviors). As Marriage Encounter teaches, Love is NOT an emotion. Love is a Verb. A verb is an action word. Your choice to Love your wives is not about your feelings (even if you are still limited to feeling only "good" and "bad"). It is about your commitment to your promises.

Women, submit to (obey) your husbands. We all recognize the concept of a wife as the "power behind the throne". We are also caught in a time where the concept of individual autonomy reigns supreme in our secular society. We have all heard "No man will ever tell me what to do!" This phrase caught on so strongly because we all remember the truly tough and sad cases and it is easy to paint everyone with the same brush.

1/2 For me it came from love, tenderness, prayer, patience and the Grace of GOD! We have been told to DO it and stop complaining. The change of heart must be followed with a change of actions. Even more than our children, our spouses recognize when we truly "Do what we say".

2 Behave as if we truly believe the teaching of Christ and in this case "The least of his disciples". We made a commitment to each other and before God and his church. We have an obligation to each other. This is how we should live our Sacrament of Marriage.

3 It is deeper than just this scripture. A Christian understanding of marriage calls for a total and lifelong commitment of yourself to your spouse. For both spouses there is a self-sacrifice. We are called to be faithful and faith filled. Both faithful and faith-filled are difficult in our times. Sometimes I rebel because I don't wish to be faithful to God's call. The effects of "Original Sin" kick in once more. I can cease to be a good example to those around me. I can become a source of scandal. That scandal can return decades later.

4 Pray and listen and Pray. We need to understand that the God who made us knows best how we should behave. We were not given this inspired scripture on a whim. Part of my understanding of it came through Marriage Encounter. A greater part came through listening to several inspired homilies on this scripture. It does come up regularly. With good reason!

I stated above that as men we should keep our commitments. There are times when it is not easy. Being a Christian man means keeping your commitments even when it is no longer easy. Marie Bellet has a song titled 'One heroic moment' where the refrain is "I know that it is nothing compared to Calvary". That is what we should understand as Christian men. Our troubles and trials are nothing compared to the Sacrifice on the Cross. We have been given the grace to live our commitment one (heroic) moment at a time.

When we fall, we pick ourselves up and move on to the next moment and the next choice to keep that commitment. I praise God for the choices and the chances to make them.

My grandmother had no problem with submission- her husband was perectly submissive !

We do have comment boxes at HMS - in the form of our email links. :-)

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by alicia published on June 25, 2005 9:00 AM.

It just gets better every week! was the previous entry in this blog.

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