Train for trust.

15 Jan

Last night, I got my first real chance to trust my husband without time to think and prepare.  One year ago, I would have crashed, burned, devastated my husband and hurt our marriage. I’m really thankful this morning that I now have a years worth of training under my belt.

Training?  Yep. You got it. We do not learn new habits or grow in our strength without training.

Just like with the muscles in our physical bodies, we have spiritual muscles as well.  Situations in life are constant opportunities for us to build and strengthen our muscles, or ignore them and allow them to remain weak and unhealthy.

If you were to lay down on a weight bench having never lifted weights before, it is very unlikely you could lift 100 pounds of weight ten times, especially without fatigue or injury.

But if you’ve been strength training for a year, multiple times a week, your chances of succeeding would be much higher and your body would feel conditioned instead of exhausted and sore.

The same is true of our spiritual muscles.  Our love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, self-control, trust, forgiveness, and maturity muscles all need exercised and conditioned.

And in marriage, TRUST is a big, big muscle.  Especially for a woman trying hard to be submissive to her husband.  Submissive, that’s a loaded word right?  Actually, no… if you know the Biblical meaning, it’s not really that loaded, at least not in a negative way.

A submissive wife is just a wife who has chosen to honor God and His design for marriage by accepting her husband’s leadership and coming under his protection.  She simply has enough self-control to help her husband instead of compete with him for control.  She is not a doormat or a slave.  She’s an encourager, supporter and friend who trusts God and His design more than herself and her pride.

Submission does not come naturally or easily.  We all need practice. And constant help from the Holy Spirit.  And the best way to practice is to practice on purpose.

Most people don’t strength train their body on accident, or only when situations present themselves.  They intentionally set up a routine and keep their appointments.

The same is true in marriage.

Satan would like to interject here that this is manipulation.  No, it absolutely is not.  There is a VERY REAL DIFFERENCE between manipulation and intent to grow as a God-honoring submissive wife.  And that difference is defined by motive.

So before practicing to grow any spiritual muscle, define your motive.  Do you hope to move closer to God?  Or do you hope to control God, someone or something?

On a personal note, I knew growing my trust muscle was going to be intense work.  Just like trying to flatten a belly after having four kids.  It wasn’t going to magically happen on its own.  Especially because I was a VERY controlling wife.

I, like most women, fell very hard into the feminist preaching that “I am a capable, brilliant and hard-working woman.  My ideas are valid and intelligent, and often better than a man’s.”

So, when interacting with  my husband – I trusted myself and my ideas always as the best option and the safest and most secure choice.

I remember my husband once calling me outside to tell me about a landscaping idea he had.  And what did I do?  Question it.  Why would you do it like this?  Why wouldn’t you do it like that?  Doesn’t this make more sense?  I’d do it like this…..

Truth be told, I couldn’t care less about landscaping!  Why was my gut instinct to do that? Because I had very little trust in my husband to make good choices and to lead me.  And over landscaping?  Yikes!!  I TOLD YOU I had a lot of growing to do.

So how do you practice your trust muscle in your marriage?  Be intentional about asking your husband’s opinion and then trust him.

If you have been untrusting and unsubmissive for a long time, you’re going to have to start small and help your husband find his voice.  Chances are, your husband doesn’t even give you his opinion anymore.  Why would he?  And he may even bulk at being asked and side step your question putting it back on you.

Start small and start safe.  Use five-pound weights and do only a few reps.

Ask him something he definitely has an opinion about.  A really great option is picking his favorite meal and putting it up against something he really doesn’t like.

Would you prefer pizza or meatloaf for supper tonight?  And when he answers say “Ok.”  And then after supper, thank him.  “You know, that was really good pizza tonight.  You made a great choice.  Thanks for helping me decide.”

Everyone appreciates being validated and we’re all encouraged to give our opinions and ideas when they are appreciated.

Then, continue weekly to ask questions that are more challenging for you to trust, and stick to your guns.

The truth is, even if your husband picks wrong or leads you in a direction with a negative consequence, God is sovereign and His design is flawless.  Your husband can only become a better leader by making mistakes and growing in His listening ability to the Lord by the weight of consequences, both good and bad.  He isn’t going to make a decision that removes you from the will of God (unless He asks you to sin, in which case, you should be submissive to Christ first and not sin with him) and God will bless you and your marriage for honoring His design.  You will grow closer to God individually, and as a couple.

As you grow in your trust, your husband will grow in his confidence and leadership.

It will not always be easy.  Like I said when I started this post, last night was hard for me.  But I feel safe with my husband and I know that God will be sovereign over all his decisions.  No matter what happens, I have joy in the Lord knowing that I’m trusting Him, and I’m protecting the unity of my marriage.

Practical Application –

Do you need to start exercising your trust muscle?

Make a list of questions you can start asking your husband and trust his leadership and wisdom.

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7 Responses to “Train for trust.”

  1. gottaletgo January 15, 2014 at 2:52 pm #

    This WAS and IS soooo me! love your definition of a submissive wife. I’ve just recently started on my journey of being a submissive wife. I am learning how to trust, but have a LONG way to go……..baby steps. 🙂
    Thank you so much for your blog!

    • Kayla Gulick January 15, 2014 at 3:27 pm #

      You’re welcome! I know when I started my journey… everything was so clear that I felt like I should have it all down and be mature in a matter of minutes. It hasn’t gone that way — but God has been faithful to help me make progress and I know He’ll do the same for you!! Thanks for sharing your heart here!

  2. Rick@RomanticHusbands.com January 15, 2014 at 6:06 pm #

    What a really smart approach.

    • Kayla Gulick January 15, 2014 at 6:16 pm #

      Thanks!

      • Rick@RomanticHusbands.com January 15, 2014 at 6:22 pm #

        New picture?

      • Kayla Gulick January 15, 2014 at 6:31 pm #

        yeah – I like it because I took it wearing the brand new cowgirl boots my husband bought me for Christmas. I’ve wanted them for years and he secretly sold his bow to afford them. So that picture is special to me!

      • Rick@RomanticHusbands.com January 15, 2014 at 6:36 pm #

        Very nice; you look happy!

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