What is your husband's favorite dish? My hubby loves pan cakes. If it wouldn’t be for my vote we would have them on the menu every day. As the name suggests, they are made in a pan. Since moving to Ireland and for the last couple of years I have been trying to bend over backwards to make decent pan cakes but I have failed so many times. I've got so frustrated that I almost quit making them. And, I have spent a fortune on frying pans. The last one I have bought cost €35 and even that one didn’t do the job.
Maybe I cannot cook the way I used to? I often wondered. Or, perhaps the stoves (hobs) in Ireland are just so very different than the ones we used to have in Germany? I’ll have to admit that a few frying pans went into the bin because I’ve bought the wrong ones for the stove. However, the one I have bought for €35 is supposed to be made for all kinds of stoves. It did not work, though — and it almost went into the bin as well. The only reason I have kept it was that it had been so expensive and dear to me.
The other day my husband bought a new hob for me. It’s one of these single hot plates, an induction one. Guess what? Yes! Hubby’s favorite dish came out just fine. Meaning, the frying pan you see in the picture above is perfectly made for the stove.
Having the perfect appliance but using wrong cookware on it will not lead to good results. And, even the best cookware won’t work on the wrong appliance. Sometimes we are so eager to find the perfect match that we rush into something we might deeply regret later on.
God knows us well. He has made us!
And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him. (Genesis 2:18)
God made us for (our) man. He has made us the perfect match for the one He has made us for. F. B. Meyer wrote in his commentary that Eve was, therefore, given to crown his bliss; taken from his side, as afterward the Church from the opened side of Christ. What a wonderful thought.
Her children rise up and call her blessed; Her husband also, and he praises her:
(Proverbs 31:28-31 NKJV)
This is for you, my precious friend and beloved sister in Christ - and to you, girls, who are insecure whenever praises are directed at you.
Notice that the praises the woman of Proverbs 31 is receiving are not coming from herself, which wouldn't be right (Proverbs 27:2). Instead, her children, her husband, others, and her works are the ones who praise her.
This woman is a great blessing to her family, her friends, and her neighbors. Her children stand up for her mom and call her blessed. Her husband praises her for he is convinced neither his own nor any other daughter could ever keep nor make his house the home his wife does. His love looks beyond her charm and beauty; he acknowledges that because of her love to God she is able to help him in the way she does. Her works are praising her, they speak louder than any words could ever do.
Back to you, my precious friend. ...
Did you see that soft glance in your husband's eyes while you were sharing something about the good old days? Have you noticed how his shoulder moved closer to yours after you've taken your seat next to him? Did you hear his tone of admiration when he mentioned that dish you are cooking so well? How about your children? You may think you have failed in one or another way but have a good look at them! Not too close, my friend! Keep a bit of a distance to see them through the eyes of someone who isn't part of your family. You will see how comfortable they feel in your home and how much they love you.
Myself? At times, yes, I find myself having trouble accepting praise. That usually happens when I'm in doubt of deserving it or if I question the honesty of it. And, sadly, I do find myself desiring approval from others now and then. On the other side, whenever I read Proverbs 31:23, I become more and more aware of what is giving me the greatest pleasure of all (praise):
Her husband is known in the gates, When he sits among the elders of the land.
(Proverbs 31:23 NKJV)
Now, understand, this doesn't necessarily regard his place in the church. It might talk about his achievement at work or a position he is having within the community. A wife has quite an influence in her man's life: she can either support and encourage him and advance his reputation, or she can nag and drag him down. Remember, encouragement and praises mean a lot to your husband. I'll share some ideas about this in one of my future posts.
Heard a great sermon from 1 Corinthians 11 about headship and head covering last Sunday. I want to share a little bit about it and another sermon that was preached in the same church a few weeks ago.
We know the verses in Ephesians that talk about a man loving his wife as Christ loves the Church and about the wife submitting to her husband as the Church submits to Christ. This has always been the picture I have kept in mind. However, things changed after a I have heard a sermon on this a couple of weeks ago and a reminder of it mentioned yesterday.
Think of it, we have to submit to our husband as the Church submits to Christ. But does the individual local church always submit to Christ as the Head of the Church? So, if even the church slips I shouldn't feel that guilty if now and then I don't submit, should I? Well... You see, both preachers mentioned that, in God's order, there needs to be a "loving authority" and a "loving submission". Both of the men pointed to the words found in the first book to the Corinthians and in Ephesians but also to the fact of the relationship between God and Jesus: God being the "Loving Authority" while Christ being the "Loving Submissive" One.
That picture changed everything for me. God, the "loving Authority" sends His Son and His Son responds in "loving submission". I asked myself what would have happened, if Jesus would have said: "Up to this point, yes, but not any further. It's not worth it. Nothing will change by Me submitting anyway." I was shocked about my attitudes and the many situations before in which I doubted that submission was the right way to go.
Nope! I'm not the perfect wife. Not at all! I'm more desperately preaching to myself here. I don't willingly, lovingly submit to my husband all the time. All too often I put my wants, my wishes, my pleasures first. But I also keep reminding myself that God's ways are best and that His Grace enables me to keep my feet on His path.
By the way, in the same passage (1 Corinthians 11) Paul is talking about head coverings. I will not get into details about this symbol today but leave it instead for another day's post. So, if you want to find out more about it, please stay tuned.