Biblical Counseling, Book Review Series, Christian Marriage, Complementarianism, Doctrine as Idol, Domestic Violence, Domestic Violence and Churches, Extra-Biblical Nonsense, Gender Roles, Marriage, Marriages Damaged-Destroyed by Sp. Ab., Martha Peace, Spiritual Abuse, Spiritual Authority, Women and the Church

Book Review Series – "The Excellent Wife" by Martha Peace – Chapter Fourteen – A Wife's Orderly Way to Respond to Her Husband's Evil Responses

This is a book review series of The Excellent Wife by Martha Peace. If you are just joining us, you may click on previous chapter reviews if you’d like to catch up.

Chapter OneChapter TwoChapter ThreeChapter FourChapter FiveChapter SixChapter SevenChapter EightChapter NineChapter TenChapter ElevenChapter TwelveChapter 13

Chapter Fourteen is titled, “God’s Provision: Resources for the Wife’s Protection.” This chapter is adapted from Lou Priolo’s talk entitled, “Biblical Resources for a Wife’s Protection.” Lou Priolo, a nouthethic counselor, is Director of Biblical Counseling at Christ Covenant in Atlanta, Georgia and trains biblical counselors around the world with Competent to Counsel International. I will refer to Peace throughout this review since she is adapting Priolo’s information.

I thought about breaking up this chapter over two posts due to its length, but I’d like to keep moving through. These eight resources are listed in order for how a wife should go about addressing conflict with her husband. Bear with me; this is a tough chapter. Some of Peace’s words may be triggering, so please make sure you take care of yourself.

#1 Learn to Communicate Biblically

What exactly does “communicate biblically” mean? I got the feeling when I read this that it meant a wife would need to limit her words. I wan’t too far off. According to Peace, a Christian wife needs to ensure that she is speaking appropriately in all circumstances. This means guarding your words.

This will take much practice and prayer. If a wife is frightened, frustrated, or angry, at first it may be difficult for her to think straight about what she should say or do. But, by God’s grace, she can learn. A wife can learn how to biblically respond to her husband in a God-honoring way.

She continues with:

God-honoring responses are gentle, loving in tone, and edifying to the hearer.

The worst part of this “resource” is that Peace states if a wife doesn’t communicate biblically, she is sinning. This is victim-blaming and a lie. It gets to the heart of nouethic/biblical counseling: what sin did the wife contribute to her situation? A wife who is being abused should never be asked this question. Abuse is about power and control by the perpetrator. A wife’s biblical response is not going to change his abusive behavior.

#2 Overcome Evil with Good

The next step for a wife instructs her to respond with the right actions and attitude. A godly wife should respond to evil with blessings for as long as it takes.

Often, the only thing that stands between obedience to the Lord and not being overcome by evil is endurance. The wife is to endure and continue overcoming evil with good; however, many wives give up too soon.

This makes me wonder how many women have been told that they are giving up too easily. Teachings such as: “Hang in there, be obedient to God, things will change,” only play into the hands of the abuser and keep women in harmful marriages. And for what purpose? The preservation of an idolized institution of marriage or the harmful message that God’s name and the church will be shamed.

#3 Make a Biblical Appeal

Next, a wife is told that she should appeal to her husband if she has a better idea. However, this may not always work in the wife’s favor because ultimately she needs to follow what her husband wants her to do. Why even make the silly appeal in the first place? The intent of the appeal should be as follows (Provided are the main points):

First, the appeal should be done for the purpose of achieving the husband’s objective or desire.
The second point is related to the first. The motive of the wife must not be manipulative.
Third, the appeal should be made in a respectful manner and with a spirit of submission.
Fourth, the appeal should be done at the proper time.
Fifth, an appeal should be made once.
Sixth, an appeal should always be prefaced or concluded with a statement by the wife that she is willing to do whatever her husband decides.
Seventh, if her husband is asking her to sin, she should propose a viable alternative which seeks to accomplish the husband’s intent.

#4 Give a Biblical Reproof

Peace talks about reproof throughout the book, so I won’t go into long detail on this. If you are new to this series, the idea is that a wife should point out to her husband that what he is doing goes against God’s word and try to help restore his relationship to God. I’m sure you can see how well received that would be by an abusive husband.

A husband, whether he is a believer or not, has a responsibility to receive his wife’s reproof in a gracious manner. However, this does not always happen. Sometimes, a husband may refuse to receive a reproof from his wife or may even respond to it in a harsh, angry, blame-shifting, or threatening way. In that event, the wife must stand firm and focus on fulfilling her biblical responsibility. God will give her grace at that time to respond to her husband’s anger or intimidation.

#5 Respond Biblically to Foolish Demands

Immature Christian husbands may act foolishly from time to time by making harsh or unreasonable demands or accusations about their wives. Likewise, a wife can be foolish in how she responds to her husband’s foolish demands. Husbands may particularly act this way in pointing out their wives’ failure to carry out responsibilities. This may be especially true if the husband has not yet learned how to lead his wife biblically. Instead of leading her in a loving way, he may resort to intimidation, manipulation, harsh criticism, or hostile teasing to accomplish his purposes. This abuse of his God-given authority often throws a Christian wife into total confusion.

Oh, you think so? I’ll be honest here…I’m at the point of yelling out choice words. Peace says a wife should respond to this behavior by first acknowledging her husband’s abusive words to recognize her own sin. Then she is to respond with wise words, not foolish words. I’ve lost my patience with this chapter at this point.

#6 Seek Godly Counsel

Oh, good! Maybe a wife can actually reach out to someone to find some help!

…it is important to make sure that you seek help from a faithful, godly person who knows the teaching of Scripture and is committed to living by Scripture. Such a person will believe that the Bible can not lead people astray if it is properly understood and obeyed. They will also believe that the Bible is given to man that he might know how to live a life pleasing to God. And finally, they will believe that the Bible contains practical guidance for all of life’s circumstances.

Basically, Peace is saying that if you’re going to seek guidance from someone in the church, that person needs to rely upon the Bible to guide their advice, needs to focus on restoration, should be a church leader or an older woman, and if you desire to seek counseling, should be a certified nouthetic/biblical counselor. To which I say, “Run!”

#7 Church Discipline

The next resource is to reach out to church leaders to follow the Matthew 18 process of church discipline. A wife is to make sure her intent is to restore her husband’s relationship with God, not slander against her husband, and gather witnesses to his behavior to take before the church leaders.

At the meeting, she should accurately report the facts of her husband’s sin. She should not exaggerate the facts nor underplay them. Otherwise, she would be deceptive. Wives should realize that wise witnesses will always give the husband an opportunity to tell his side of the story in keeping with Proverbs 18:17. ‘The first to plead his case seems just, until another comes and examines him.’

Peace points out that depending on the church, the Matthew 18 church discipline process may not be available to the wife and doesn’t offer any suggestions if this is the case. I suppose she assumes that all churches should follow this biblical process.

#8 Involve the Governing Authorities

If a husband threatens physical abuse or is sinning against his wife by verbally attacking her, she should not hesitate to involve her church’s leadership to initiate the process of church discipline, or contact the governing authority (if appropriate). Letting her husband bear the consequences of his sinful behavior at the hand of either church or governmental authorities is an act of loving obedience to God since God Himself has appointed these authorities for her protection.

Every example given in this chapter of a husband’s response to his wife included abusive behavior. Why was this information not provided as the first step of this resource process? Peace made it very clear at the beginning of the chapter that these steps were to be followed in order, that certain steps not done correctly were sinful, then has the gall to say “do no hesitate” to reach out to the police. Also, she limits reaching out to governing authorities only if the abuse is physical or verbal attacks. She lacks acknowledging that abuse includes sexual, digital, financial, spiritual, and emotional offenses.

What frustrates me about hard-core complementarians is that they will throw in wording such as, “contact the police if you fear your life is in danger” to make it sound like they truly care about Christian wives. It sounds good, but there is a deeper message that is horribly wrong.

My advice to Christian wives is to not go directly to your church leaders unless you absolutely know that they care for victims of domestic violence. You will know this if the pastor addresses domestic violence in sermons, if the church partners with community resources dedicated to victims of domestic violence, and church leaders actively mention that victims will be believed and supported.

Of all the chapters in this book, this has been the most difficult for me to read. My heart grieves for those who have been harmed by this book’s teaching. Unfortunately we still have seven chapters to go.

24 thoughts on “Book Review Series – "The Excellent Wife" by Martha Peace – Chapter Fourteen – A Wife's Orderly Way to Respond to Her Husband's Evil Responses”

  1. This chapter reads like a manual Joan might have handed to Peggy at the beginning of “Mad Men”. The whole chapter is designed around the idea that wives are husbands’ secretaries (helpers), designed to implement their bosses’ plans. But in Gen. 1 God’s command to fill the earth and exercise skillful mastery over it is given to BOTH sexes – not to the man first and then the woman by implication.

    “And finally, they will believe that the Bible contains practical guidance for all of life’s circumstances.”

    This quotation hits the nail on the head! So many people believe this! The Bible absolutely DOES NOT provide practical guidance for all of life’s circumstances. This belief turns the Bible into something like an auto-owners’ manual. Need to change the oil? Page 12. Need to figure out how to deal with an abusive husband? Page 15. There will be SO MANY circumstances in life, most of them actually, where a person will never find a passage of scripture in which “practical guidance” (as in, specific guidance for a specific situation) is not given. What a horrible way to treat the Bible.

    I think God allows for creative solutions to life’s problems that may be informed by the Bible and the character of God found in it, but teaching that you’re going to find every answer to every question in it is deceptive.

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  2. first, the appeal should be done for the purpose of achieving the husband’s objective or desire.

    um….what happens when the wife has an objective or desire??

    {i think i know the answer}

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Kathi – nouthetic counselling became quite popular in the UK as an antidote to popular psychology of the variety that allowed you to blame everything other than yourself for your own sinful actions. Like anything, it can go too far (like reading Adams more than the bible), but using the bible as a critique of human behaviour is sensible imo.

    A husband who is abusing his wife is not behaving, by definition, in a way that would be taught in the NT. It’s how you know what abuse is. It is also possible for the person on the receiving end to react in a way that is sinful. Self-pity and bitterness would be two obvious examples, and I’ve my battles with these in my time. And just when you think you have finally overcome it, it pops up again …! I do think though that Adams is right in teaching someone else’s sinful behaviour does not justify a sinful response in return.

    Regarding point 4, you cannot impose Christian standards on a non-believer, and the NT treats spouses who are both believers and those where one is not differently.

    The main point that struck me reading this ‘episode’ as it were was the impression that Peace is frightened of wives disobeying the NT on marriage (you know the word!) and is creating a whole load of rules if you like to try to prevent this. A fear of straying from an overly defined role. I think that if your heart is in the right place, this shouldn’t be necessary. Just relax, get on with it, and correct things when you get it wrong as you go along. Once you have learned to drive a car, you do that without constant reference back to the driving manual and highway code.

    (Just between us, in my own marriage (and I have just taken her dinner in bed!!) we do not have pillows, duvet and bedroom wallpaper with Eph 5 printed on them. For reference only.)

    I am starting to gain some sympathy for you with the overuse of the word ‘biblically’!

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  4. KAS – I can understand what you are saying about the Bible addressing human behavior, but I don’t think the Bible addresses how to handle all situations in life. I think nouethic/biblical counseling is harmful not only because victims are asked to evaluate their own sinful behavior, but because of the belief that the Bible is sufficient to address all situations in life.

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  5. Apart from the critique of nouthetic counseling–and I’d agree that there is at least the strong tendency to blame the victim in it–there is a huge issue with how the issue is framed. If you have someone who believes she’s (he’s) being asked by her husband (his wife, whatever) to do sinful things, don’t you first establish that it is sinful, then establish how actionable it is–whether it’s criminal or just a matter for rebuke/discipline in the church or what.

    I’m personally watching the implosion of my brother-in-law’s marriage, and that basic “triage” is at the heart of their problems. My wife and I hear of what’s going on, and the constant question we have is “is this a sin issue, or is this an issue of one person trying to control the other in every little decision?”

    Going back to the critique of nouthetic counseling, upon looking at the recommended sequence of actions–framing of the response before figuring out how serious the offense is–that would be entirely consistent with the practice of blaming the victim for not being nice enough when, say, dealing with her husband’s physical abuse or adultery. I pray that if and when I’m confronted with very real abuse, I am wise enough to let a couple of “f-bombs” or such slide and listen.

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  6. KAS: as an antidote to popular psychology of the variety that allowed you to blame everything other than yourself for your own sinful actions.

    This is terrible and inaccurate framing of an entire field. Psychology is not religion, it is not about ‘sin’ and it may not even be about blame. It is more about understanding and coping. Sometimes someone legitimately has hurt you and you have to figure out how to deal with it. Focusing solely on real or often imagined sins you committed in response to something like abuse is deeply unhelpful.

    Debbie: t the meeting, she should accurately report the facts of her husband’s sin. She should not exaggerate the facts nor underplay them. Otherwise, she would be deceptive. Wives should realize that wise witnesses will always give the husband an opportunity to tell his side of the story in keeping with Proverbs 18:17. The first to plead his case seems just, until another comes and examines him.’

    What is she really saying here…that someone is going to get the husbands story and believe that it sounds like!

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  7. “Instead of leading her in a loving way, he may resort to intimidation, manipulation, harsh criticism, or hostile teasing to accomplish his purposes. This abuse of his God-given authority often throws a Christian wife into total confusion.” So the author references the husband’s abuse but then turns the spotlight on the wife who has been thrown into total confusion. Seriously? The spotlight should remain not just on the abuse, but on the one doing the abusing, not the wife’s confusion! How easy it is to exact pressure on victims to find a way to right the sinking ship.

    With regard to intimidation, manipulation, harsh criticism or hostile teasing, these behaviors describe my former husband, but the man to whom I am now married has never resorted to these cruel, self-serving tactics. In my experience, the man who truly loves the Lord – and his wife – cannot simultaneously be an abuser.

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  8. From Kathi,

    Of all the chapters in this book, this has been the most difficult for me to read… Unfortunately we still have seven chapters to go.

    Seven more chapters?!? Of this dreck!? I’ve only seen the excerpts, and I know this is book is one for the compost pile.

    Honestly, Kathi, I don’t know how you get through it all. Thank you so much for enduring it for the rest of us.

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  9. Amen SKIJ! I would have burnt this paper book full of satanic drivel in the back 40 long ago! It would be difficult for me, working hard with me own two hands, to actually “pay” for a publication like this, whose premise is “biblical.” Oh, how our LORD Jesus must be weeping at such hogwash.

    In counseling women of abuse from their spouse, I highly recommend “secular” counselors as many of them actually “get it.”

    Two publications that have had a “biblical” impact on my life in healing from spousal abuse are:
    “How He Gets Into Her Head: The Mind of the Male Intimate Abuser” and “Steps to Freedom: Escaping Intimate Control” by Don Hennessy. They are full of truth, wisdom, and freedom (from my perspective and reality…..true freedom in Jesus Christ Alone, for personal and eternal salvation apart from religious churchianity), that makes born again believers aware of the tactics of abusers, especially those individuals who love to lord it over others in using religion (twisted scriptures of the bible) in defending abuse of the overlords.

    Barbara Roberts over at crying out for justice has served our LORD Jesus Christ, in aiding in the healing of those of us sheep who love our LORD Jesus Christ as our Savior, and directing and pointing us to our Master Jesus, Who is the Author and Finisher of our faith. There is also a commenter on her website who is full to overflowing with His Wisdom who also (in addition to Barbara) loves our LORD Jesus Christ….her internet pen name is “HealinginHim”), who offers spiritual wisdom and healing from a truly Jesus perspective, to which I must give the appropriate credit in helping me heal from a “highly complementarian marriage.”

    Even the term “complementarian” makes me sick to my stomach, wanting to vomit such lies from the devil. For to me, the term “complementarian,” elicits such venomous hatred of women, whom our LORD Jesus Christ created in the first place, equal, in terms of salvation, for the grounds at the foot of His Cross were equal……….far from the hierarchal term “complementarian” term, whose definition is bears no witness to the teachings of Christ, but with the reference of “lords it over.”

    I find it comforting in the real world, how our tractors, combines, semi-trucks (learned on single axe tandem trucks how to maneuver the “shift system in addition to truck laws), four wheelers (which bring me such freedom and joy in our LORD Jesus Christ), and other implements used in the agricultural system, have taught me much about the freedom and liberty in the fact that they don’t CARE about the gender system, which has become a proverbial IDOL in the realm of fake institutional 501. c 3 c’hurch systems. While the visible c’hurch systems survive and thrive on the religion of “hierarchy” and “lord it over” so called “spiritual ethics” of their own “laws,” those of us who have literally “ran the race out of the man-made religious systems because we love only our LORD and Savior and truly desire to serve Him, apart from the pharisaical religious systems adored by “man,” truly thrive in the abundance, freedom, and liberty of Jesus Christ.

    C’hurch systems throughout the ages, thrive on mammon (money), focusing on the “one” who earns the most income within a family structure, however, the Spirit of Jesus Christ, never focuses on pandering to the “bread winner.” Jesus’ Spirit always directs us born again believers to focus and minister to the least of these, which bears Witness to the Testimony of Christ Alone for teaching, ministering, and following Him for all truth.

    The so called “leadership paradigm” of the late Peter Drucker and his business model, has done much abuse to the visible c’hurch system, worldwide.

    Oh, how our LORD Jesus must be weeping over His wandering sheep, for He bowed down to wash the filthy lucre of His disciples in the upper room before His murder…….how many a 501. c. 3 c’hurch folk, has humbled themselves to the point of washing filthy, gross feet?

    As Megan Trainor sings in her song “it’s all about that bass,” I find it rather entertaining in the fact that c’hurch systems worldwide, sing, “it’s all about that money,” and using satanic methods of guilt, shame, intimidation….devious forms of abuse” in extracting volumes of wealth to support their unabashed lavish lifestyles.

    Have traveled hundreds of miles across this county, and find it beyond broken, that these c’hurch buildings within the communities, are better constructed/built, lavishly decorated and furnished (and far better maintained), and far more worshiped, than the average family homes/structures/and family relationships within these communities.

    Jesus did not come to redeem expensive buildings, materials, or even the complementarian paradigm so infecting the synagogues of our day, but in fact, He came to offer the forgiveness of our sins to save our souls from the evil one.

    I find it odd, how visible c’hurch believers, take better care of the carpets of their religious buildings that are spilled upon by their mocha lattes, their soda pops, and their designer coffees, sold at a “profitable price from their in house marketing schemes (hyssop whip inserted here by Jesus),” than they do of the literal sheep who love and serve Jesus Christ, apart from the c’hurch politics that its members play.

    Kathi, is “martha peace,” truly a woman of “peace,” as defined by our Master and King?

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Katy, I always like reading your comments on SSB. However, I’m going to ask a question that probably shows my ignorance. Why do you put an apostrophe between c and h in words like Christian and church?

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  11. Katy – The so called “leadership paradigm” of the late Peter Drucker and his business model, has done much abuse to the visible c’hurch system, worldwide.

    I’m glad I’m not the only one this bothers. Taken on board by Willow Creek amongst others, and exported around the world, where you learn to grow the church as though it were McDonalds. It isn’t, and I will never understand why so-called evangelical churches get outright unbelievers and pagans to give them ‘insights’ into how to deal with modern society. It’s like asking walking corpses for spiritual guidance!

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  12. SKIJ – I don’t know how anyone manages to get through this book. Or any of these “godly wife” books. You know what’s really interesting to me is that the format is all the same, even if there is a slightly different focus. They have a handful of main points made in the first couple of chapters then the rest is repeat, repeat, and repeat.

    These books could be condensed down to two chapters. When you do that, you realize that the information they provide, while harmful, is actually very limited.

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  13. Or any of these “godly wife” books.

    As a single person, these people make being married sound like the absolute worst thing that could possible happen to me. “Sometimes your husband will be absolutely terrible and that’s totally cool! Be SO sweet to him when he’s doing it and maybe he’ll stop or maybe he won’t but either way you’re absolutely trapped and should suffer for ‘god'” Really???

    Pass.

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  14. I am inclined to agree except for the fact that what these writers (I struggle to call them authors) convey is profoundly contradictory to the heart of God and HIS concept of marriage, which is love, oneness, mutual respect and care – never cruel obligation or a form of christianized bondage. The real thing is a treasure to behold and experience.

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  15. Cindy, I’m not saying this is my opinion of marriage in general, just that for people who are ostensibly heavily ‘pro marriage’ they make it sound absolutely dreadful.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. 12 years ago, I was going through a difficult time in my marriage. My husband was unfaithful and battling with several addictions. During that time, a church member gave me this book. This chapter mentions the wife being confused. “Confused” is what I was reading this book. It made me feel that my husband’s choices of giving into addictive behavior were my fault. I do admit that I was not the wife I should have been, and that I was neglectful and put him last. But this book, really made me angry. I knew I was not created to be a doormat. The book caused me to delay taking action because I was reading it and thinking I needed to just pray and put up with it; however, I knew the Holy Spirit was telling me otherwise. I knew I had to establish boundaries to protect myself and my children. I told my husband he had to leave the house, which he did. He had to choose his family or his addictions.

    We saw a “Christian” counselor for several months. She was awful. She took his lying and infidelity personally, and told both he and I that, “there was no hope for him.” My husband left that meeting contemplating suicide. We then began seeing a secular counselor who was a game changer. She didn’t give up on us and pushed us to be honest. I realized my selfishness and self righteousness were a contribution to the breakdown of our marriage, and I also realized that my husband was hurting just as much, if not more, than me. That’s when things turned around. I welcomed him back into our home and acted like a wife, not an entitled woman, nor a doormat. It was through this time, that my husband met the Lord Jesus Christ as his Savior.

    I feel for the women who read this book and feel that they have no escape. It sickens me to think about it. This book contributes to the emotional abuse some women are already experiencing.

    I am happy to say, that my husband and I have been married for 18 years, the past 10, happily. He is free from all of his addictions and leading a God honoring life. There is ALWAYS hope.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. How many of these wifey-submit books has herself suffered from physical or emotional abuse from HER husband?? Answer- none.

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  18. Dear CEMA,
    Thank-YOU for your personal testimony regarding the realities of this life. Jesus never minced words and neither did you with regards to the truths of your marriage. You are a courageous woman, and in your weaknesses/infirmities, Christ has lifted you up and carried you through the valleys with His Love, Mercy, Grace, and Wisdom, and has given you the knowledge to examine yourself and your relationship with your husband.

    There is much to learn in your comment thread as you have inspired and encouraged me in my faith in Jesus Christ, and have given me the Hope that is in us. You are the real deal Christian here, minus the “snarkisms,” the “know it all-isms,” and the proverbial internet “put-downs,” oh, how I respect you, CEMA!

    May our LORD Jesus Christ continue to protect, bless, and love on you and your family as you continue to love Him with all of your heart, mind, and soul, and loving your neighbor (this can be husband’s too), as yourself.

    God Bless you sweet sister in Christ Jesus!

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  19. How does a Christian wife respond to her husband’s evil behavior?

    Given the source,
    Joyful Submission(TM), what else?
    “Stay Sweet… Stay Sweet… Stay Sweet… Stay Sweet…”

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  20. How does a Christian wife respond to her husband’s evil behavior?

    HUG: Given the source…

    If the source is me otoh?

    Leave. End of chapter, End of Book.

    Boy Bye.

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  21. @Abagail:

    Cindy, I’m not saying this is my opinion of marriage in general, just that for people who are ostensibly heavily ‘pro marriage’ they make it sound absolutely dreadful.

    Like the only reason to marry is God and the church have their Hell-gun pressed to the back of your head, one up the spout and the safety off. Even worse than “When are you going to give us grandkids? Huh? Huh? Huh?”

    I look at these Christian(TM) Marriages. I see the type of widdle wifeys they produce and think “I’m going to get stuck in THAT? For life? Where’s the companionship?” One look and it’s MGTOW time. Or find a portal to Equestria, find this certain nerdy unicorn, and put a ring on her horn.

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  22. I understand the cynicism, as I survived an 20-year abusive marriage coupled with the guilt-laden church teachings and pressures to remain with my abuser.

    What is lost in this dialogue (as we see from Lori’s book) is that we do not serve the church, we serve the living God. In this, our lives, our validation and our hope come directly from Him, not the church. It grieves me that so many have actually walked away, not only from the church, but from the One who saved us, as a result of misguided, legalistic and sometimes toxic church folk. I no longer go to church, but I love the Lord with all my heart, and He is the source of everything right and good.

    Furthermore, marriage is a wondrous, powerful thing when two believers who truly love God and cherish one another come together. I have seen this side of marriage too, and I thank God for bringing a strong, protective, godly man into my life. What we have is the way it’s supposed to be.

    The church may at times pervert God’s intent, but God’s heart and His ways are a beautiful thing to behold and experience. We don’t have to go to church to find the heart of God.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. One look and it’s MGTOW time.

    Somewhat off topic, you are welcome not to date if you like obviously HUG but there are a lot varying types of fish in the sea. Most people don’t hold views as extreme or nonsensical as this for their lives. I hope you’re staying away from the many misogynistic elements of that particular movement because they are way off base in addition to being disturbing.

    As a fellow single person, what I have done personally to deal with dating nonsense is to take active ‘breaks’ from dating between relationships, between stints on dating aps, etc. I find this helps me. (Maybe that’s because of some level of introversion too) I enjoy my time with other people and enjoy my time alone, so this works for me. I am currently ‘on’ though, so we’ll see how it goes this time around lol!

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  24. Would like to respond to the two main things I see here in the chapter:

    First: “The husband’s intent” – The man leaves father and mother and cleaves to his wife and the two become one flesh. The two married people form a new “will” as it were, and it’s neither the husband’s will nor the wife’s will, but in a sense, a will that both submit to. My wife and I need to understand not what is best for me or her or the kids, but what is, within reason, best for the family. Sometimes we disagree and we then decide how we can compromise or accommodate, but the very idea that the marriage is defined by the “husband’s intent” is inherently dehumanizing and abusive to women. If the husband wants sex three times a week and the wife isn’t interested more than once a month, there is no room for negotiation within the husband’s intent. It’s a relic of patriarchy that a married couple are announced as “Mr. and Mrs. John Doe”, and a relic of patriarchy that in common law, the wife and husband become one “person” whose name is the husband’s name.

    Second: Nouthetic/Biblical Counseling. It’s pure evil. Just read what its proponents say. Paul Tripp says when an abused (even physically abused) wife comes to you, well, of course, listen to her, but keep in the back of your mind that more likely than not it is not a wolf husband and sheep wife, but two sinners fighting back and forth. That’s victim blaming and sin leveling FTW, and that’s not some obscure reference, but an article published in OPC’s New Horizons denominational magazine. The BC premise is that any issue in my own life is caused by my own sinful reaction and not by sin inflicted on me. The BC playbook was written by Job’s friends – listen and weep for the first session, figure out their sin, and then beat it over their heads in subsequent sessions until they repent.

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