1 Corinthians 11:2-5 NIV
I praise you for remembering me in everything and for holding to the traditions just as I passed them on to you. But I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God. Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head. But every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head—it is the same as having her head shaved.
Paul is reminding the Corinthian church what is proper as well as the order of how men and women are to act in relation to each other. When reading this you could ask if this is how men and women should act in church today. Seems like the traditions in Paul's day were quite different than what they are today. For me personally, today, I don't believe whether or not my head is covered or if I have long or short hair in church is really that important. Something I do believe is important still, though, is that God is the one who set up Christ as head over man and man being head over woman and woman being man's helper, especially in marriage. Paul mentioned God being head over Christ. So does this mean that one is set above the other, one being more important that the other? No, since both are God they are absolutely equal, each having a different role. I also think in a marriage both husband and wife are equal, each having a unique role.
So what is the different role between husband and wife? First I think the husband being head over the wife is supposed to protect and be willing to sacrifice himself for her, he is to love her. The wife is supposed to be the helper for her husband and is to respect him. I still remember and love what Pastor Rob said when he preached on this topic a year or so ago. Whenever you look up helper in the bible you will most likely read about God being our helper. Doing for us what we can't do for ourselves. In thinking about my wife's relationship to me, there have been many things she has helped me with over the years and she has always done it with gladness (OK most times) not as someone unequal or less important but as someone with a different purpose and willingness to be what God made her to be. As for my relationship to her, I think of how God said he was well pleased with his son. I think my purpose is to protect but also just as important, to encourage and communicate better how pleased I am with who she is. In a couple days it will have been 49 years that Judy and I have had to practice this together and I have to say she has done much better at holding up her end of the deal than I have.
After reading this scripture and thinking about it I want to practice doing better at what I was made to do and be. I want to be better at encouraging and building Judy up by praising her more for the woman she has been and for the many things she has done that I couldn't do. We should all be honored by who God made us to be. Whether man or woman and rather than trying to be the stronger one, understand that we are equal but made for different purposes.
by Ken Edgerly
Photo: mosaic tile picture of ancient marketplace in Jerusalem.