Experiencing the joy and blessing of placing myself under my husband’s leadership, authority, protection and provision has been really simple to implement once I learned the ropes! Now, my husband serves as a very useful compass for my life – a gift from God just for me!
PARENTS, ESPECIALLY DADS ARE SUPPOSED TO BE OUR SPIRITUAL COMPASSES IN LIFE!
Before marriage, our parents, specifically our fathers are God’s authority over us for our protection, leadership, provision and guidance. Your Dad is supposed to be a wise, godly compass for you to be able to use to keep yourself travelling God’s narrow path that leads to life.
Once you marry, your parents’ God-given authority over you will transfer to your new husband. Then you will change from seeking your parents’ wisdom to seeking your husband’s wisdom and following his leadership. You are free to respectfully speak your heart to your dad or parents and tell them what you desire, dream and how you feel. And wise parents will carefully consider a child’s heart when giving godly counsel. You’ll also bare your heart to your husband one day, sharing your feminine perspective, your feelings and your desires in a respectful, mature fashion. And he will want to know your thoughts and will long to make you happy and please you if he is being a godly husband.
What you are learning about cooperating with your parents now, submitting to their wise counsel now (even – and especially – if you don’t agree) and obeying them now will give you skills you need in your relationships with God and your husband in the future!
Today I share with you some powerful phrases a girl can use when someone is asking her for her time, her effort, her commitment, her money or is pressuring her for something:
- “Let me check with my Dad and get back with you.”
- “I need to talk to my parents about that.”
- “I want to talk to my Mom before I can give you an answer.”
- “I’ll ask my parents.”
If you are out of school and living on your own – you may not need to check with you parents on as many issues as you did when you were still in high school. But if there are BIG decisions to make, it is still probably wise to seek your parents’ advice (especially if they are mature believers in Christ) or to seek a godly mentor’s advice before making large commitments of time, money or effort to someone or something ie: career decisions, where to go to college, handling conflicts, buying a big-ticket item, deciding to date a guy, considering a marriage proposal (Hopefully the guy will ask your dad’s permission before he asks you!).
IN THE GARDEN
Imagine if Eve had said, “I need to check with Adam” when Satan was giving her the offer of a lifetime in the Garden? Wow! Things would have turned out very differently – on that occasion at least!
That’s one reason God has put husbands and fathers as the leaders of marriages and families – to protect women and children. We don’t really like reading that “the woman was deceived first” and it can seem unfair that just because Eve was deceived before Adam that all women are being lumped into that category with her. But God’s Word is trustworthy and true. And if God says I need protection – then I am smart enough these days not to argue with Him about that like I used to – back when I was so deceived earlier in our marriage!
HOW USING THESE TYPES OF PHRASES PROTECT ME
When a salesman, a cult missionary, a neighbor, a friend, a family member, a church member or anyone asks me to commit my time, money or effort to something, I use these phrases because:
- I buy myself time so that I don’t make a rash commitment or decision. Left on my own, I can easily cave in to pressure and end up committing myself to something that I don’t even want to do – just because I feel guilty, or because I make a decision too quickly without enough thought going into the long term ramifications and consequences. Giving yourself time is a good idea even if you only say, “I’ll have to get back to you on that.” Making rash decisions can lead to big problems and can result in unwise choices!
- It’s good to get a father’s input. He weighs the proposition with different eyes, a masculine world view, and a different perspective than I do. He can see if something is ultimately in my best interest sometimes better than I can. God gave my father wisdom that He did not give to me.
- A father or mother can easily see when I am getting overloaded or stressed and have too much on my plate and they have no problem saying, “No, that’s too much for you to do.” I love it because then I can say, “I talked to my Daddy and he doesn’t want me to do X.” And then I can say no without any guilt and he can be the “bad guy.” It doesn’t bother him at all if he hurts people’s feelings in order to maintain my sanity and our proper priorities in our family.
- Checking with my parents first allows me to avoid making decisions that they may disagree with and have a problem with later. Prevention is SO much easier than trying to fix a huge mistake!
- My taking the time to run things by my Daddy tells him that I respect him and his leadership. He feels more trusted. AND he knows he can trust me more, too! There may be some small things that he doesn’t need me to check with him about. But being able to take bigger things to him allows HIM to carry the weight of responsibility instead of ME all the time now. I used to carry that weight in our marriage. It was HEAVY! What freedom to not have to carry all the responsibility anymore (My husband carries the weight now, but my Daddy carried that weight when I was still at home – it was WONDERFUL!).
- I end up with better decisions. When I make more decisions on my own, there are a lot more regrets, misunderstandings, and way too many overcommitments for me that caused me a lot of anxiety and stress. My parents always had my best interests in mind and helped steer me in a wise direction. And I am SO very thankful for their leadership in my life! Theyprotected me from a lot of potentially unwise choices!
CHECKING WITH MY DAD or MOM FIRST DOESN’T MAKE ME A SLAVE, IT MAKES ME FREE!
When I keep myself under my parents’ God-given authority over me, I have SO much less unnecessary stuff on my schedule and can keep focused on the things that are truly my higher priorities. I have more time for myself. I have more time for my family. I have more time for God. And I have no weight of guilt for saying “No.”
SAYING “NO” TO PEOPLE HAS ALWAYS BEEN HARD FOR ME
Sadly, I was quite the people pleaser. I didn’t like upsetting people or making them mad. I would do almost anything rather than hurt someone’s feelings. But that wasn’t healthy for me or my relationships! So I’d usually have to choose between two awful feelings that I hated.
- Feeling guilty for saying no to a request
- Feeling resentful for saying yes to something I didn’t actually want to do
It was a lose/lose situation. Now, when my husband says something is not a good idea for me – I happily say “no” without the slightest remorse. But if he thinks it’s a good idea, I have a green light that this direction is a wise one. The same principle applies for an unmarried girl who is under her father’s authority (unless he is asking you to do something sinful or he is abusing you!).
SOME “JUST SAY NO” SECRETS
Of course, I have also figured out a few secrets to saying no even on my own! Thank You, God!
- Now, I say, “I can’t.” If there is something that I REALLY know I don’t want to do or would stretch me too thin. And when pressured, I stick with my answer and repeat myself, ad nauseum, “I’m so sorry – but I can’t”
- I DO NOT EXPLAIN WHY I can’t. I just say, “I can’t.” THIS IS CRITICAL! Explanations just give people a way to shoot down your reasons and explain to you why you could do something. When you give no reasons, there is nothing to shoot down.
- I also realize now that when I say “Yes” to someone’s request for my time, effort or money, I am saying “no” to my family’s request for my time, effort or money. That perspective helps me realize that I have to say “no” to someone – and is this request REALLY worth me saying “no” to my family or to my own health or to my time with God?