Monday, July 14, 2008

To Submit an Intelligent Mind

My boyfriend and I had a very interesting discussion tonight...

Apparently we have vastly different views of submission and authority. I'm more traditional, and he's more egalitarian - figure that one out.

Oh, he's not emasculated...oh that's DEFINITLY not him. In fact, he is a rather good leader and has no problem taking a role of authority.

No, he happens to like an intelligent woman...and to him, the role of submission is a complete waste of her intelligence.

Me, I didn't think submission came at the cost of my intelligence. But he seemed to think so and he was against it. So, is it possible for an intelligent woman to benefit a marriage with her intelligence if she is truly being submissive? Or is it up to the husband (and a demonstration of his true leadership) to take into account his wife's intelligence when making a decision that affects them both?


Carrie C. said...

To answer both of your questions: Yes.
I think it's necessary for the woman to be in thinking and discerning mode so she knows how to serve and submit to her husband. To some, submit means "defer to" and to a certain extent that's true. However, sometimes the husband can see where he is weak and his wife is strong. That doesn't mean she is necessarily leading, but she is being his help-meet.
Take the kitchen for example: He may have no clue how to make his favorite dessert, but you can do it quite well. Just because you do something better than him, doesn't mean you're leading. Same thing goes for intelligence. Just because you may be more intelligent than him in certain areas doesn't mean he is following you or deferring to you. He should be exhorting and encouraging you to do what you do well. You should be doing the same thing for him.
How this is played out in concrete ways, only God knows.
This is exciting, though. As your relationship continues to build and expand, you'll get this figured out more. Sometimes, you just need to hang on tight, keep arms and legs safely inside, and enjoy the ride. :)

Anonymous said...

There are different views of submission. I agree exactly that a man can't lead a rebellious wife, as PK guys seem to think.

But, what exactly is submission?

When my daughter was young, I obtained a copy of ME? OBEY HIM? by Elizabeth Handford, a Baptist minister's wife. I recommend the second edition, used on the Web, because she answers all the inane excuses women give for not submitting to their husbands. And, all of this involves Mrs. Handford's Bible based views.

My daughter read it as a teen. She is one of maybe two or three submissive Christian wives that I know, and they are the most content of wives that I know. The rest talk a good story at church, but if you visit them at home, their shrieks of rage are amazing at the slightest disagreement with their husbands.

Here is how it works for my daughter and her husband. I forgot to point out she has a Master's Degree in Science Education and is working on the second. Her i.q. is only around 125, but she is no dummy at all.

Theirs was a mature marriage.That means they deal with issues in a mature fashion.

She told me, when there is a decision to be made, they discuss it. "Most of the time" (which I construe as perhaps 70 to 90% of the time) they agree immediately.

Once in a while, they do not immediately agree, and she, not he, announces, "You are the head of this family, you are responsible for me, we do not agree, so we are doing it your way, period."

She is a scientist, so she has observed these 11 years. "Most of the time" when they disagree and do it his way, it turns out he was right, and she was wrong. She understands well that the male brain works differently than the female brain, and usually he spotted something that she did not understand.

Once in a great while, it turns out he was wrong. But, she also noticed that when he is wrong, the cost of his mistake never is significant.

And, she says, happily, "In exchange for this, I have peace in my home."
Your "shared leadership" concept is dangerous, IMO. I do view my son-in-law as "family policy maker".

Her submission most days means she adheres to his policies, and applies them to daily events. If something happens outside the expected range of events, she well knows his views, and if she must make an important decision without consulting, she knows his views very well, so there is no problem. And, it isn't really 'shared' leadership.

I already explained how the policies are formed, with a discussion between them, then he makes the final decision if they do not agree. Or, better, she accepts his view with no further argument or debate if they don't agree.

She is a happy person. Her intelligence is not wasted at all.

In my limited experience (my wife can no more submit than an elephant can fly) and observation when wives submit, thus encouraging/motivating him to lead, they are happy and content. God makes rules based on human nature, not feminist theories. Most women have a strong need to feel secure, even highly educated career women, and allowing a husband to take care of a wife (also part of his nature if he is allowed to) makes her feel secure.

Tell your boyfriend he sounds like a good guy, really caring, but his views have been affected by the feminists who try to twist submission around to slavery and wasting intelligence. It is't true. Christian submission makes for a happy wife.

Anonymous age 66

Christina said...

Omg, Anonymous age 66...

We actually AGREE on something?



"My views on 'shared leadership'" were addressed in another blog so you can have issue with that there.

Thank you for the example of your daughter. Its helpful. Actually, what you described is always how I envisioned it to be.

Thing is, there are guys that seem to think that submission is, in fact, making all the decisions yourself and never discussing it with your wife. In which case it fails to utilize the woman's intelligence.

That may also be a result of the feminist movement, but I think that view of authority is a bit older than feminism.

Anyway, I will let him make the decisions, but I find it very comforting that he values my intelligence enough to want to utilize it. Gives me some peace of mind in trusting that he won't trample me with his big boy boots.