My "Controlling" Husband & Why I Call Him King
First of all. I've had this song stuck in my head since I sat down to start writing this post. And if you don't know of Sade already, you're welcome.
Life has been incredible. We have moved into our new home and let me tell you...the home buying process is no joke! But wow, it's rewarding to be sitting here on our couch writing this. I've already mentioned to a few of you who email me that I will share a post on our home soon, but until then, you can see pics and peeks of it in my story on Instagram: @ciarakleva
Not too long ago, I made a post in which I referred to my Husband as King in the caption:
My Favorite Smile
Since then, I received just a couple dm's/snaps about it, and also, I've seen so much stuff on social media/interwebs concerning giving men that "title" in a dating or marriage relationship. I took a week or two to collect my thoughts before I decided to take a stab at conveying a few the many reasons WHY I refer to Steve in this way mentally, privately, and ON OCCASION on social media, and also why it is NOT a sign of a domineering or controlling husband (in OUR relationship). I've titled my post tongue in cheek as I feel there is so much confusion, and shock it seems, when I show that level of verbal respect to Steve. From here on out, my post will not be sarcastic, just explanatory, not because I have to explain anything to anyone, but because I hope it offers some clarification in a way that may even give you something to think on, agree or disagree, and then not worry that I am in an abusive relationship that does not offer me freedom of thought/speech.
ONE | Let's define King together.
noun: king; plural noun: kings
a person or thing regarded as the finest or most important in its sphere or group.
When I refer to Steve as King, it is because he literally the finest and most important man to me in all of history and all groups of men with exception to Jesus Christ. This kind of love and admiration for your Husband is nothing to be apologetic about, rather, I wonder how many marriages would be strengthened tenfold simply by this mental/practical shift from wife towards husband.
That concludes the first section.
TWO | "KING" does not mean that my Husband controls me, rules over me, or takes away my voice.
As a Believer, I believe that marriage is symbolic of Christ and the church. Our gospel based marriage contains certain facets that are not culturally derived nor arbitrary. They symbolize something eternal. So for someone to, in any way, understand where I am coming from with my way of verbally respecting Steve, and in particular, what this post is about, we would have to acknowledge that, and then I can move forward. If you do not view marriage in this way, chances are the rest of this post won't really relate to you, but I love that you're here anyway! <3
The attitude and conduct between Steve and I is God giving me/us practical ways of seeing and experiencing our attitude, conduct, and relationship with Jesus Christ. Therefore, they will be drastically different than what is common or easily recognized and accepted by the "world".
In Ephesians, Paul speaks about the headship of Christ over the church. In the same way, I believe Steven is the head of our marriage. But it doesn't end there.
There is also a UNITY between Christ and the church, just like there is a unity between my Husband and I. This means that the respect is not just flowing from one way. It requires the mutual respect and love from both 'sides' (ie. not an abusive husband that picks Bible verses out of context to condone his bad behavior and abuse.) He respects me as the strong, gentle, and consistent wife that has been given to him. My submission does not lessen that respect from him.
This unity also requires a wife that chooses and recognizes the privilege of submitting. I'm holding my breath because this is typically where things tend to get a little hairy inside AND outside the church. I am not going to use this post to tell you how I think you, as a wife, ought to submit to your husbands; but in our marriage, it is something that goes completely against my nature, and yet, I know that God has called me to this, so I do it and I strive to do it with a joyful, loving and intentional heart AND face (not just guilt tripping Steve along the way). Even in this, it is a practical way of seeing my never ending pursuit of sanctification, and the many ways it goes against all that is "natural" in me.
It is better to dwell in the desert, than with a quarrelsome and angry woman. Proverbs 21:19
THREE | Respecting My Husband Does Not Make Me Inferior or Unequal
Let me attempt to illustrate what I mean in this way. Suppose that we are all actors in a play. In this play there are many characters, but among them there is a hero and a villain. The actor who is given the role of the villain is not any less a person in his standing because of his role than the one who plays the hero is a better person for doing so. We must distinguish between what we are as a person in Christ and what role we are to portray about Christ and His church. We are all given a role to play, but a subordinate role does not imply an inferior relationship to Christ.
If someone were to protest that the role they have been given to play is beneath them, I would first remind you that we are not worthy of any role. We were, as sinners, worthy only of Christ’s eternal wrath. Any role is a privilege. And, further, let me remind you that in order to achieve our salvation at Calvary, Jesus took on a role which was beneath Him. Finally, I would say to you that the values assigned to our roles by our culture are opposite to those assigned by God. Do you think it demeaning to hold a position of service? Our Lord has taught us that to be the greatest is to serve, and not to be served (Matthew 20:20-28). Why, then, should we agonize about any role which God has graciously given to us? // Bob Deffinbaugh
When I respect and honor Steve verbally, intellectually, and physically I get a glimpse of how God sees Steve. I also get a glimpse of how God sees ME. Special, intricate, part of something bigger than myself, MUCH bigger. I get to experience the crazy, incredible, and intimate aspect of our physical relationship in a way that we could never experience if I could not first hold him [Husband] in high esteem mentally. Steve gets to feel the weight of the responsibility of me, our family, and the inner workings of running our family system and our marriage. I get to feel the privilege of trusting GOD in the position that he has placed Steve and being the other integral part, without which, it would all crumble . Yes. Respecting and honoring Steve requires that I love, respect and trust God MORE.
I wonder, if you [the person who may have found issue with my use of KING] immediately feel uncomfortable seeing/hearing the way I communicate with Steve because of something on your side the table? Is it possible that you may have difficulty placing that sort of trust and submission in the man that God has placed over you so it offends you when you see a woman refer to a man that way? (Remember, due to sin, evil, abuse, we may tend to read 'submission' and 'over you' as innately domineering and abusive, but that is not the context I am writing in. Just a reminder.)
FOUR | When did disrespecting our husbands become so easy?
Depending on the individual family system that you were raised in, you may have seen and heard your father respected, cherished and honored (even when there were arguments or "tough times"), or you saw your father frequently eye rolled, undermined, berated, and if he performed how mom wished, he was rewarded with better behavior. As domesticated beings, we tend to mimic what we see. Right now, we are in a world where women allllllll over are repeating notes of disrespect, domineering the husband/family, and rewarding husband with sex, food, and a good day if he does everything how the wife views as right (much like how we reward dogs for good behavior). How wrong is this? How much more wrong is it that it's so commonplace. I post a photo of my Husband and call him King and I strive every day to treat him as such (in the points one through three stated above, NOT in catering to his every need/desire and becoming his mommy lol) and it turns heads, but where is the shock for the man being berated publicly in Target? What about the husband being emasculated in front of everyone while the family is gathered at the house on Christmas?
So not okay.
Steven and I do not have children yet, but I will not wait until they are here to practice the way I will treat him when they are watching. As much as it is in our ability, we will NOT disrespect each other in front of our children (or others). We know that we will fail, but we also know that God is faithful to fill the gaps of our failures.
Can I just throw in that even if you are divorced, disrespecting your ex husband in front of your children is NOT going to grow positivity or anything beneficial in their lives. Even if he was an @$$hole, it is not wise to bring up your children to bash their father. Perhaps use it as a teachable moment/s in boundaries and wisdom in setting them with people, including their father.
FIVE | It's not just a word.
You see it on Facebook.
The wives (and husbands) who post all the time about their significant others in super lovey, ooshy gooshy ways and it's super precious (most of the time ;)). How many of you know a couple that portray that sort of kindness and love online, but you know for a fact that is not how it is in real life? I see it a lot, and I think it's put a bad enough taste in my mouth to motivate me to want to REALLY make sure this is not us. I am not perfect, neither is Steve. We make mistakes. But one thing I can say with honesty is that we genuinely aim to love each other to depths that cannot be explained, with the love that God gave us first. If you are really great at making nice loving posts about your husband, that's awesome, but perhaps it would be even more beneficial to make sure that is how your behavior is towards him as well.
I've discontinued using my old social media accounts, and it's been great. #nomorecreepers
It's been so sweet to see such positive affirmation on my posts and even my posts with Steve! (I used to lose 3K follower PER POST of Steve on my old account, so yeah, it's nice that my new following can accept the fact that I am married.)
While I am loving it, and loving your sweetness towards our relationship, I want to make it super clear that I am not advising ANYONE to be more like us. I am not telling anyone to think that we are the perfect couple. What I am saying is that we have a Perfect God and He has giving us the chance to have a beautiful, glorifying and FULL marriage that gives us a glimpse of Heaven here, right now. I guess I'm just saying, read this, that's great, but then pray with your husband and listen to God's leading for your own marriage. I'm not you. So yeah. I can't really tell you that doing what I do will give you a great marriage.
- Call your Husband whatever you want. You definitely should not call him something I call my Husband just because you saw me do it, lol, but perhaps set the bar a little higher, both for yourself and for him.
- Have all the sex. Don't use it as a manipulation tool. (didn't really talk about that here, but still important).
- Don't use manipulation as a manipulation tool. ;)
- Yes. You are equally important. Equally valuable. Equally loved by God. Your husband was just given a role, encourage him in it.
- One day, you may feel even more STRENGTH & POWER in your role as a submissive and strong supporter once you truly grasp what it means and put it into practice.
Now. Watch and listen to the Sade video again and sing it to your husband. LOL