Tuesday, June 24, 2014
Obedience Should be a Man's Only Option
Recently I was doing a small carpentry job. While in the attic on a hot summer day with the ventilation fan doing its best to suck out the building heat on the black roof a thought struck me regarding ‘male obedience’. I find it perplexing how the brain works. I have no idea where the thought came from nor why it came when it did. My thought had to do with men promising to obey women. To understand where I am coming from the reader needs to know that when Katie and I married I promised to obey her. Specifically I knelt before her and promised many things including my promise to do whatever she told or asked of me. I went back and looked at the vow I wrote and found the following statements that contained such promises:
· I kneel before you symbolizing my desire to serve and obey you as your submissive husband.
· I promise to obey you.
· I will obey you.
· I want to obey you more than anything else.
· I want you to be known as your submissive husband who obeys you without question
· I promise to honor your dominance by obeying you.
Yes I made the promise to obey my wife. It is a promise that goes against the tradition of a woman making such a promise to her husband to be. I broke that tradition and I did so after much thought. When I wrote the vow to Katie I did so choosing my words carefully. I started writing it a few months before we married and gave thought to what it was I was promising. I knew that the promises I made I would be held accountable for and that my words would become expectations, just as I believed Katie’s promises would be to me.
To obey another is a big deal. It means that ‘choice’ is removed. It implies that the ‘obey-er’ is indebted to the one whom they are obeying. I can see back when men and women married and lived those Happy Days lives in the 1950’s and before how normal a woman obeying a man was. It was what every woman did. But then again husbands had their ‘honey-do’ lists and word had it that women ran the show at home regardless of whether or not the wife worked or stayed at home.
When I was nailing a piece of 1x6 the thought came to me, “why wouldn’t a man want to obey his wife?” I mean, every couple promises to love one another. As Kathy noted when she referenced the wedding she and her husband attended, the pastor spoke about the Biblical definition of love: Love is patient, love is kind, love does not keep track of things, love forgets wrongs done, etc. When a man tells a woman ‘I love you’ he implicitly tells her I will do anything for you, I will give my life if it means sparing yours. I will do anything to make you happy, I never wish to harm you, hurt you, make you look or feel less when around others – or even when only with me.
Now I know that we often don’t think about the words we use in that way but that is what is meant when one tells another that they love them. If my premise is true, then why would a man deliberately ‘disobey’ his wife? I couldn’t think of one valid reason. If he deliberately disobeyed her he states through his actions that she is not the most important person in his life (but rather he views himself above her). He reveals that he is selfish by putting his wishes and desires ahead of hers. That isn’t love.
Yes I know the traditional man wants freedom to do things his way and when he is single I guess there is no harm in doing so but when he commits himself to another his world changes. No longer is life about him only. The entire reason he enters a relationship is because he realizes his life will be enriched by sharing it with another. When that thought is in his conscious mind, most men do obey. In fact they go out of their way to see to it that the woman is taken care of and cared for. Only when the new becomes old do those attitudes and habits become lost and forgotten. How sad that they do for when those attitudes disappear so does a degree of shared intimacy as well.
I am proud to know that I promised to love Katie. I never want to disobey her. I always want to please her. I love seeing that beautiful smile that comes so freely because she knows without a doubt that I am hers. Period. There is no question in her mind that my heart and soul belong to her and I am thankful she can tell me what to do and watch me obey her daily – without question – for each time that I do I demonstrate my love and submission to the woman I promised to serve as long as we have lives to share.