The Spiritual Leadership of a Husband Part 1
What is the #1 complaint you hear from Christian women?
Despite what you might think, the answer IS NOT, "My husband isn't treating me equally." The broader complaint is, "My husband isn't the spiritual leader."
By and large, today's godly woman yearns for her husband to be a spiritual leader.
God has put this yearning into the heart of a godly wife to be under her husband's spiritual umbrella, when she feels her husband is walking under the umbrella of Christ.
If a husband makes excellent decisions all his life but never trusts Christ in those decisions, a wife then feels this husband is accomplishing nothing for Christ and his Kingdom.
Husbands, do you feel your wife does not follow you?
It may have little to do with the specific issue she is bucking--she may view you as a great decision-maker not only on that topic, but on most issues.
Here is her concern: If you make great decisions, but do not depend on Jesus during that process, you are not reflecting that which Christ Himself modeled and taught. Jesus depended on Abba.
Jesus also said, "Apart from Me you can do nothing." In fact, Jesus told a parable about a man who built bigger and better barns, but was the fool for never seeking God. When he died he went to hell. The guy was successful. He made excellent decisions. He won every battle, but in the end, he lost the war.
Your wife fears the same with you.
Unfortunately, some husbands do not appreciate these fears. If he makes a good decision apart from Christ what'‘s the problem? It is a good decision in his opinion.
By way of analogy, men would rather go to the best brain surgeon who is not a Christian and never prays than to a brain surgeon who is a prayerful Christian, but is barely competent to do brain surgery.
Some husbands feel that their wives simply want to go to the incompetent surgeon who prays. In actuality, however, godly women want to go to a competent brain surgeon, so to speak.
The husband will say, "My wife wants me to pray about everything when I simply want to get on with the decisions.” But she asks, “Did you pray about it?"
Why does a wife do this?
The reason a wife can feel this way is she hears Christ call each person to trust Him. Further, she hears Christ promise to guard and guide those who trust Him.
Consequently, she feels if the husband is dependent upon Christ, even if he makes a poor decision here and there, over time all will be well because Jesus will protect and provide.
Her faith tells her that over time Christ will shepherd her husband and thus the family. She believes Jesus will be involved in the decisions, and over the years more good will come than bad.
She believes this because the Lord calls her to believe this. She is to place herself under her husband's authority "as to the Lord" (Ephesians 5:22). That phrase "as to the Lord" drives her life. She hears Christ calling her to trust Him, so she looks beyond the shoulder of her husband to the Lord. That is her worldview. Obviously, if her husband is looking at the same Lord, she enters an incredible restfulness.
God made her this way.
She is not naïve about bad decisions, but neither is she so earthly-minded she is no heavenly good. She believes a kingdom-priority is touching the heart of Christ through faith. That is the first and foremost decision. She believes one must trust Christ during the process of decision-making.
Consequently, when she sees her husband depending upon Jesus, she now feels that both of them are looking at Him. In her opinion, both of them are pleasing the Lord and that is a kingdom value.
The final decision is not unimportant to her. That decision can be very significant, and she expects her husband to use his strength and leadership to make a good decision.
But she always expects her husband to apply Proverbs 3:5,6. "Trust in the LORD with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight."
So what are the requirements and purpose for a husband to be a spiritual leader? We’ll talk about that in Part 2.
In the meantime, tell us what you think.
Questions to Consider
Wives, do you follow your husband as your spiritual leader? Why or why not? And what do you think the requirements are to be a spiritual leader?
Husbands, do you feel your wife follows you? Do you think you’re a good spiritual leader?