Monday, 7 October 2013

More Than a Fig Leaf

The Masculine Mandate
“God’s curse on the man draws him unwholesomely away from the woman, even as God’s curse on the woman draws her unwholesomely toward the man. This is why most marital counseling sessions are some variation on this theme. Wife: ‘You don’t pay any attention to me.’ Husband: ‘You are too demanding and nag too much.’ God has cursed the marriage relationship with a poisonous desire for control by the woman and a self-absorbed focus outside the relationship by the man” (Richard D. Phillips, The Masculine Mandate: God’s Calling to Men).

In her blog entitled “Fitting Together the Puzzle Pieces of Marriage” Karen Gaul took a look at the ramifications of the Fall on marriage.  
First Karen looks at the curse given to women.  Struggle was born after sin and the curse that follows where women were told that we would desire to control their husbands (Genesis 3:16). Women were created to be helpers and after the curse we demand to be in control instead”.

Then Karen lays out how the curse affected men.  The curse God put on man was even greater. The work they would do will be wearisome, life sapping, tiring, and consuming. And because of that curse he has little energy to give to his wife and family. Women often feel neglected because of either his work or his after-hour enjoyments.”
For those of you who tend to cope with bad news by turning to food this would be a good time to get a pound of your favorite chocolates.  After all we are living under the curse, we are struggling in our marriages because of the consequences of one man’s sin. 

Before we are too quick to blame shift let me point out a few things.  The sin that Adam and Eve committed was disobedience, the root cause was their self-centeredness, their desire to be like God.  We too are self-centered.  We too disobey God’s word.  We too have desires that trump our allegiance to God, i.e. money, power, “stuff”, happiness, chocolate, etc.
So being omniscient (knowing all things) what was God’s plan, is it possible to break this cycle?  Yes.  The answer is for us to turn back to God.  As a man I can pray to God to help me get my priorities straight.  Work is important but not more important that my relationship with my Creator or my wife.  As a woman (which I’m not) you can pray to God to help you become the “helper” that you were created to be.  Nagging is not helpful.  Making your husband a home improvement project is not helpful.  Admiring him, respecting him, deferring to him and loving him will contribute to breaking the curse.

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