We have reunited with our old Bible study friends lately. We, and our friends, are hungry to study God's Word and find not enough time to do it. So, we are trying to get together every other week to study. I have thoroughly been enjoying these times. We never know what direction our conversation will spin into and last week we didn't even get to the passage we had our Bibles opened to.
We were talking about submitting to husbands and how freeing it is when you finally get it. My friend asked me, "What made you finally understand the concept?" I told her that honestly, it started when I read Created to Be His Help Meet by Debi Pearl. Of course it was the Lord that spoke to my heart and helped me understand His truths, but that book was the beginning of newness around our house. I had just never heard it SAID like it's said in that book. She just lays it all out--no excuses. No tip-toeing around hard truths. I told my friend she could borrow my copy when I got it back from my sister. She asked me when I had read the book. I thought and told her, "Well, it must have been within the last year because I read it at this house and we've only lived here a year." Thinking back, I now remember ordering and reading it at our old house--but still, it's been within the last 2 years that I read it.
"Really?" she asked, incredulous.
"Um, yeah. Why?"
"Because I thought you had all this figured out a long time ago. You certainly acted like it."
Hmmm. So she thought that I was submissive to my husband, but I know better. How can that be?
At church we recently read the story of the "prodigal son". If you've grown up in church, this is a familiar parable to you. If not, take a minute to click the link and read it. It's short.
Now we all can see the sins of the wayward son. He dishonors his father by asking for his inheritance while his father is still alive, squanders the wealth, does everything he shouldn't do and end up in a pig pen. It's all very obvious.
But the other brother is a lesser character in this parable. Someone in our Bible class pointed out that although he was the "good son" and had stayed home doing what he ought--he also had some problems. When he found out his father was throwing a party for his no-good brother he was very unhappy. Although his actions had been correct, his attitude was not.
Ah. Two kinds of sin. One--obvious action. The other--not so obvious wrong attitude and heart covered up by right actions. And there was my answer. I may have looked like a submissive wife 10 years ago, but I most certainly had a wrong heart and attitude. I would not want anyone to know how ugly my thoughts could be back then.
As we all go about our tasks this week, we must remember to make sure that our actions AND our attitudes are proving to the world (and to our families) that we have been transformed. Because they both matter. They really do.