Husband & Wife for Life: Her Influence
We have seen from God's word that woman is to be in submission to man. However, that is not to say she is inferior to him--she merely has a different divinely-given role. Jesus Christ Himself submits to the Almighty Father (cf. I Cor. 11:3), but Jesus is deity and is certainly not inferior to the Father (cf. John 1). Although God has given authority to men, He has blessed women in a unique way with strong influence. Consider Proverbs 30:18,19 - "There are three things which are too wonderful for me. Yes, four which I do not understand: the way of an eagle in the air, the way of a serpent on a rock, the way of a ship in the midst of the sea, and the way of a man with a virgin." Women, the way that God has designed you gives you incredible influence when it comes to men. God has given you great power--power a man does not have! Do you realize this? The fact that you are feminine is a strength (even though from a physical standpoint it causes you to be weaker than man). I believe this may be what the inspired writer was referring to here. It is difficult to understand how an eagle flies, how a serpent moves, and how a ship floats in the sea. Likewise, it is hard to understand the influence a woman can have on a man.

This point can be established in many ways, but let's employ an illustration using animals. Granted, it is not a perfect comparison, but it does communicate the idea quite well, in my opinion. Ponder the similarities, in general, between men and dogs and women and cats. Men are like dogs and women are like cats. What do you mean, preacher? If you call for your dog and he's across the room, he'll come. "Come here dog, I want to pet you. I want to feed you. I want you to sit on my lap. Let's go play dog." He's there and ready! What if you whipped that dog the day before? He may be reluctant when you call, but he'll still come! Even if you've disciplined him recently, he'll still respond to you. That's just the way he's wired. He wants to be petted. He wants you to feed him and give him attention. He wants to play. If you take him to the veterinarian and tell them that your dog isn't responding when you call and he's not eating but just lying around, the vet will say: "Let's see if we can figure out what's wrong with him." That sort of behavior is unnatural for a dog.

Do you see the connection? Dogs will respond to particular stimuli like a man will respond to his wife. It's no secret, women have a strong influence over men--it's called femininity. Men respond to women in a way that is not reciprocated. A man is like a dog in the sense that he will respond to certain stimuli from his wife almost regardless of the circumstances. She's got power and influence in that respect! When she acts like a woman--by respecting him and fulfilling his needs as she's supposed to--he'll be just like a dog. He will respond positively to her--you can count on it! The influence she can exert on him in this manner is exceedingly strong.

However, as you well know, cats are quite a bit different from dogs. If you call for your cat, she may or may not come. It all depends on whether she feels like it. If she doesn't want to come to you, she won't! If you go to the veterinarian with a cat that won't respond to you all the time, the vet will still charge you but won't find anything wrong. That's just the way cats are! They respond to you if they desire to--and so it is with women.

I Peter 3:1 states - "Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives." Although the reverse is sometimes true for men, I doubt that men convert their wives to Christ as often as women convert their husbands. A non-Christian man may someday see that Christianity has made his wife perfect for him. He realizes: "She is so good to me. She respects me and meets my needs." He may become a Christian because of his wife. It is possible that a wife could be converted by her husband's influence, but more often than not I think you'll see it working the other way. Woman has an amazing influence over man. Although God has put man in authority, He has given woman strong influence. Men are responsible for using their authority over women properly, and women are responsible for using their influence upon man properly.