Actually, I would have liked the title of this one to be:
"Is Respect Really a 'Foreign' Concept to Christian Wives? I Think Not."
But that was rather long.
Yeah, I know. It looks like "Pick on David" month over at ye old bitter to sweet blog. I don't mean to pick on him. I'm just kind of incredulous as to some of the things he said over on Wendy's blog the other day.
I actually have sympathy for David. I totally get that his wife was disrespectful from the things he says. I don't like seeing wives being disrespectful to their husbands. I don't like eye rolling and argumentativeness in women and when they engage in it toward their husbands in it makes the wives look bad, if their husbands aren't being unreasonable. If the husbands are being unreasonable, then the wife doesn't look so bad, but I still don't like the way it looks. She could get so much further with him if she used a bit of graciousness.
But some of the things David says makes me realize that he is unaware of what is going on in some/many sectors of Christianity.
Here are some quotes from David over at Wendy's.
In his first comment:
" The negative comments here indicate how foreign that concept is to wives. This is not entirely their fault; the church has dropped the ball on this since forever. Until I heard a Focus on the Family interview with Eggerichs after his book came out, I had never heard any pastor or teacher make that point "
"this post, and Eggerichs' book, are spot-on for the overwhelming majority of husbands." [talking about how many husbands are not getting the respect they deserve in their own homes.]
In a follow up comment:
"My point was that Eggerichs' discussion of unconditional respect for husbands is (generally) a foreign concept to Christian wives (and Christian husbands too), while everyone is quite familiar with the concept of unconditional love for wives, even though they are both taught in the same passage. We can quibble about whether the negative comments here are further proof of that disparity, but it doesn't change my point. Introducing the specter of abuse in response to my comment seems misplaced."
It is only misplaced to David because he is clueless of how abusive things have gotten for some women in their Christian circles and their marriages. I understand that David is hurt and hurting over what his wife has done to him. But to decide, from his personal experience and comparing notes with a few guys who don't feel respected, that respect is a 'foreign' concept to all Christian wives and that "the church has dropped the ball on this since forever" if very short-sighted and, okay, let's just come out and say it... it's prejudiced.
Sorry, David, for being so blunt. But I'm only doing it because I don't like it when abused/disrespected men and abused/unloved wives talk past each other and bicker over minor details rather than seeing the big picture and working out real solutions.
So anyway, I have said all of this to set up a link I'm going to give. There is a book out called "Created to be His Helpmeet" (CTBHHM) written by a certain Debi Pearl that has earned the nick name "Created to be His Doormat" and for good reason. Debi goes into great detail on how a woman is supposed to reverence her husband (not respect, but reverence, she's King James only). I'm not going to link her book. You can find it easily since it is such a big seller among Christian wives in evangelical circles (those gals you accuse viewing the concept of respect as 'foreign'). An huge seller.
No, I'm not going to link Debi's book. But I am going to link a post by a girl raised in a Patriarchal home turned atheist who is critiquing Debi's book. Oh, is it slanderous that I'm linking an atheist? Well, I guess anyone can judge me this way if they want to. But they need to understand that this atheist turned atheist, in part, due to the over-emphasis of respect/reverence/worship of the man, the husband, the father in the patriarchal group she came from.
Still judging her for being atheist and me for linking one on my blog? All I can plead is this:
Luke 16:8 And his master praised the unrighteous manager because he had acted shrewdly; for the sons of this age are more shrewd in relation to their own kind than the sons of light.
Libby Anne, the gal I'm linking, can see this abuse for what it is. She lived it. She escaped it. Now she's critiquing it and showing it for what it is, abuse. Wolf attitudes dressed in Sheep's clothing.
CTBHHM: In Which a Woman Dares to Assert Agency
Some of the angry comments under her post are from others who have seen or experienced this ridiculous over emphasis on respect, er I mean reverence and fear.
The only reason I have linked this is to debunk David's comment concerning respect being a 'foreign' concept among Christian wives. This simply isn't true. There are a lot of people coming out of the patriarchy and heavy complementarian movements. Some are rejecting God and the Bible altogether. Others still want to find answers in God and the Bible. We do those searching for answers a disservice when we give them pat, worn-out, clichéd answers like the book "Love and Respect" and claim that teachings on respect are "foreign".