Speaking to the king in your home versus the fool is not an April Fool's joke. In this month's blog I'm heading into the topic of communication and how we relate to our husbands. In fact this is one of the most important principles to conquer if we want to build a healthy marriage. When we get this right we defeat the chaos and welcome in true peace!
This concept holds immense importance because it's based on one of the primary biblical mandates given to women in Scripture by God. Despite that, it is one of our greatest challenges as women to carry out. Fulfilling this command is crucial to the survival of any marriage. It’s a defining role moment for every woman. All the other great things we do as queen of our domain lose their importance if we don't or won't answer this question with nobility. After all, love and marriage go together like a horse and a Cinderella carriage, and this idea is about hooking the horse to the right carriage and moving forward in showing love toward our husbands which in turn causes them to show the love we long for towards us.
I was inspired to look at the idea of speaking to the fool or the king by a quote I once heard in a women’s small group discussion. I have no idea where the saying originated, but whoever coined the phrase was brilliant.
"In every man there is a fool and a king. If you speak to the fool, he will act like a fool, but if you speak to the king, he will act like a king."
We can probably all think of a time in our own marriage when either we or our husband acted so out of character in a particular circumstance that others would consider it foolish behavior. I can remember a few times when my husband's response totally surprised me. Once, at the check-out line at Wal-Mart, I was shocked when he embarrassed us both over the price of a screwdriver that rung up incorrectly. As I applied the above quote to the situation, I realized he had begun to act out of character when the check-out attendant began to speak to him in a disrespectful, condescending tone. Real customer service says the customer is always right, but in this instance she had spoken to him as if he were a fool for expecting to pay what the price tag actually said. We walked out of the store without the screwdriver we intentionally went there to buy. Instead of my husband staying true to the man I admired, he had acted like the court-jester. The tone of the check-out clerk had triggered and exposed a foolish response.
Proverbs 26:4-5 warns us that participating in foolish arguments can lead everyone into foolishness.
“Don’t answer the foolish arguments of fools, or you will become as foolish as they are…” (NLT)
This Scripture is not an easy one to live by. Anytime a discussion is taking a turn towards the castle of war instead of the palace of peace, responding with wisdom requires a lot of self-discipline. According to this verse, if our spouse is acting foolish and we join in the chaos, we also begin to look foolish. That's why arguments escalate. As our husband's helper, we can fetch a pail of water to throw on his royal crown instead of a bucket of gasoline, if our husband is burning with anger. Women have the power to either fuel the fire of foolishness or diffuse the frustration in the kingdom.
Why did God give women the mandate of respect toward their husband?
"However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband." Ephesians 5:33 (NIV)
Every man has a fool or a king inside their heart and God commanded us to speak to the king with respect. By doing so, we encourage their noble nature to emerge. The reason God commanded us to choose respect over dishonor is because respect is received as "love" to a man. Studies have shown when men feel respected they rise to a level of bravery that can conquer any enemy and call forth their nobility. That is why the military system is built on a foundation of honor and respect between fellow warriors. Soldiers throw themselves on a bomb to save their entire battalion because they feel respected by the other men on their team. They are willing to lay down their lives because they feel respected and this honor builds a sense of camaraderie and love toward their fellow soldiers. If we want a man of bravery in our kingdom, respect is how we get there.
"Married men, love your wives, as Christ also loved the Church and gave Himself up to death for her;" Ephesians 5:25 (WNT)
In the Scriptures, woman is commanded to respect her husband and man is commanded to willingly lay down his life for his wife if necessary to save her. If we want a warrior in our household who follows that mandate, a man who is willing to die to protect the kingdom, then we must show them the respect they deserve for the position they hold in our kingdom. When we do that, we find ourselves with a knight in shining armor and not a soldier who's gone AWOL.
How should I speak to the King in my husband versus the fool?
As I began to search for more evidence in Scripture that could give me answers and help me apply this lesson to my marriage, my steps led me to the Old Testament where I considered the biblical accounts of King David and two very powerful women in his life. In the book, "Chaos in the Castle or Peace in the Palace?" I discuss King David and his interactions with these two powerful women. Each saga ended very differently as I discovered the choices that were made in the middle of their crisis and the results. One ended in brokenness and isolation and the other ended with a happily ever after. One woman chose to speak to the King like he was a fool. The other chose to speak to the King he would eventually become even in the midst of his foolishness. Both stories give insight in how we as wives can win the battle for love and turn our chaotic castle into a peaceful palace. I hope you'll join me in the pages of the book where you will learn how to live out this principle daily with practical ideas and methods.
The next time you face a crisis consider the options. You can speak to the king in your husband that you know he can become or speak to the fool he may be portraying at the moment. When we choose the latter, we end up with a court-jester instead of a noble king and a brave warrior. The choice is up to us. We can defuse any situation by making the right decision in the heat of the moment. To learn more about how this dynamic actually works order the book on-line at Amazon or Barnes & Noble. You won't be disappointed!
Do you want to live in a war-torn castle or a peaceful palace?
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