This article first appeared on Precious Adornment in August 2010.
“…encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.”
For nearly two decades, Virginia Slims cigarettes were pitched as the liberated woman’s must-have accessory with the slogan, “You’ve come a long way, baby!” Designed to highlight the improvements made by women’s lib, the ad campaign often placed images of bold and sassy-looking modern women before a backdrop of photos depicting their oppressed conditions prior to the feminist movement. In light of the monumental shifts experienced by our culture over the past fifty years, it would be hard to deny the message of the now familiar slogan. We women have indeed come a very long way. Whether or not we’ve traveled the right way, however, is an entirely different issue.
Over the course of several decades, the voices of feminism and greed have combined to convince women that they not only can, but should, have it all. In a quest to gain the life, liberty, and happiness they believe they’re entitled to, many women have found that no sacrifice is too great to offer on the altar of worldly success, including their marriages. Today in American society not only do women hold the majority of jobs and obtain the majority of college degrees, but they also file the vast majority of divorce petitions. Current statistics reveal that over 2/3 of all divorces in the U.S. are initiated by women. If this is what coming a long way looks like, I think we’d better make an immediate U-turn.
In my last article on this topic, I voiced my belief that many in the church were pushing to redefine marriage long before the homosexual community began forcefully advancing its own agenda. By adopting a lower view of the sanctity of marriage than is described in Scripture, professing Christians paved the way for others to more easily discard it altogether. With many churches now supporting and even condoning divorce and remarriage for any reason at all, should we wonder that what God designed as a sacred institution is now being made a sacrilege? We spend so much time pointing fingers at the world for not acting like the church, when it is the church’s imitation of the world that should command our fullest attention.
Considering both that professing Christians divorce at a rate basically identical to the world and that women are more likely to file for divorce than men, I’d say that we as Christian women bear a great responsibility to get busy reinforcing the tattered and threadbare institution of marriage in the church with grace-motivated obedience. Do you want a strong nation? Be a committed wife. Do you long for a thriving church? Honor your marriage vows. Would you like to see the lost believe the Gospel and follow Christ? Then love your husband faithfully, passionately, and unreservedly. If you desire to see marriage esteemed in our culture, then let it first be esteemed in your heart.
Strong marriages make strong families; strong families make strong churches, and strong churches change cultures through the power of Jesus Christ. We’ve got a long way to go, ladies, let’s get started today.
He answered, “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together,
let not man separate.'”