Dear Ladies,

I have been thinking recently about the scripture, "...work out your own salvation with fear and trembling" We have all heard it quoted throughout our lives, but how have we, as women, applied it? Further down in the passage it says, "It is God who works through you..."

Do you know what I think? I think many women have substituted the word husband in this scripture for the word God. Are you thinking, "What do you mean? How can that be? Who would do such a thing?" It is frightening to think someone would make that change, since God told us not to add to nor take from His words (nor change it in any way).

It is done when women live through their husbands spiritually, instead of through Christ. It appears that some of us mimic our husbands in spiritual thought. Have you ever talked with someone who says constantly, "My husband thinks this" or "My husband thinks that." The question is, what do you think? What have you derived from your diligent study of the Word?

Let's consider a few reasons why a woman might live spiritually through her husband. Some of us probably get the physical family, of which our husband is the head, mixed up with our spiritual family, of which Christ is the head. The authority of the husband is allowed and encouraged to be applied in the spiritual realm, in many cases. More plainly, some wives seek Christ through their husbands. Why do they do this when scripture tells us that "We will all stand before the judgment seat of God and give account of how we..." Why do some do it? Search me!

A preacher's wife once gave an example of how a wife must obey her husband in all things. She knew of a young woman who would get dressed for worship. Her husband would stand in the door and forbid her to go. She would obediently stay home. Finally, she died (probably of a broken heart) and because of her obedience to him in life, he obeyed the gospel after her death. I wonder how this speaker would apply, "We must obey God, rather than man."

Another reason might be that some women are just plain lazy when it comes to studying and applying God's word to their lives. I once asked an elder's wife if we might study a Biblical question that had arisen in the group. Her reply was that she left such things up to her husband. At least she was honest. Not many of us would admit that.

When she and I were young that idea was the rule, generally. The women took care of the home and the husbands took care of the spiritual matters. However, ladies, no one can take care of the spiritual matters of another.

A third reason might be that we sometimes believe we are too busy to study. Women who are good helpmeets and loving mothers are busy. However, we all have 24 hours in a day and we do what we want to do in that time period. If we seek a spiritual relationship with our Savior we will have time to study His blessed Word every single day. Women are the keepers (guards) of the home, but not to the neglect of a thorough study and application of God's word to their lives.

I have often tried to remind my children that in the judgment day anything we have spent our time on that was not of a spiritual nature would fade away, being of no lasting value. Our physical lives are certainly important, but how we use our time will stand in judgment. Have we glorified God while in the physical realm? Do we know how to glorify God? I suggest we do not know how to glorify God unless we know His Word.

When I get the opportunity to teach young women, I encourage them to allow no one their age to know more BIBLE than they do, unless they have studied longer.

How do we know some are not working out their own salvation? One way we know is by what comes from the mouth. Remember the scripture, "Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh?" How is your conversation? Do you spend more of your spare time thinking and talking about "Church" problems, "Church" buildings, or "Church" work, than you do about our blessed Lord and His Word?

What about, "By their fruits ye shall know them"? What do you do in your spare time? Are you doing the will of your Heavenly Father, or do you waste your time and the time of your children? Have you invited the devil and his angels into your home, via TV, and then spend time complaining because TV is influencing you and your children, badly?

Oh well, I was just thinking....In Christian Love, Nelta Brock.