A month ago, I wrote a book review for Jen Weaver’s excellent book, A Wife’s Secret to Happiness. Today, I have the privilege of having Jen over at my blog for a Q&A about her book so you can get a glimpse into her heart behind the writing. Enjoy!
1. Why did you decide to write this book?
A Wife’s Secret to Happiness grew out of conversations I had with the Lord. He kept talking with me about themes of authority and submission, and how my faith can be cultivated and demonstrated in the way I live as a wife. I truly believe it all started because God wanted me to learn these concepts, and He knew if I started writing, I’d have to study and pay attention. As I started experiencing the freedom and blessings that come from applying these truths to my life, I couldn’t share it fast enough.
2. What sort of role should God have in our marriages? Why is that so important?
God wants to be active in our marriages. He’s not a silent observer. He wants to participate—bringing His love, grace, freedom, power, strength, forgiveness, all His good things to cover everywhere we lack.
3. Is it ever too late to seek the kind of marriage relationship you describe in the book?
Nope, never. The Bible talks about how God restores the years the locusts have eaten (Joel 2:25), and how He will use all things for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28). Choose to believe these verses for your marriage. Respond to the Lord’s instruction in faith and obedience while you’re waiting to see His blessings come to fruition in your life.
4. What would you say to those who resist the idea of a wife submitting to her husband? Have you come up against much resistance?
So far, I haven’t come upon too much resistance to the topic, at least not resistance they’ve spoken to me directly. I know it’s a hard thing to talk about. It’s a hard thing to write about! To a woman who resists the idea of submitting to her husband, I’d say the same thing that I say in the book:
“I know submit is a fighting word. Instead of warring against it, I ask that for these few minutes together we try to understand submission from a fresh perspective. I’m not asking that we pick up the word and take it home just yet. Ponder it. Watch from a distance, like how you’d eye a stray dog before extending a kind hand. I’ve come to know that husband-leadership isn’t a man-made curse, it’s a God-ordained blessing. But you can’t take my word for it. Trusting God in marital submission takes understanding beyond what I can give; you need to hear it from him. Consider all you’ve known . . . witnessed . . .wondered . . . dreaded about the “S” word, and allow yourself to contemplate one simple question: What if true submission is something entirely different?” (A Wife’s Secret to Happiness, page 48)
I’ve found genuine submission to be something entirely different than how common society, even the modern-day dictionary, defines it. To receive this gift, we must adjust our perspective of what submission means and how it applies to our lives.
5. What area have you found is the hardest place for most women to submit?
I’ve found that “submission” is hardest when we have a wrong understanding of what it means. Once we start operating with a correct perspective of how God wants to use submission to bless our lives with authority and security, the next hardest place to submit is typically the area where we most passionately disagree with our husbands. When my passions and plans come in conflict with God’s instruction, it’s hard to perceive the blessing. But every time I prioritize His way over my own, I come out better for it.
6. Can you tell us more about your idea of “wifestyles”?
A “wifestyle” describes the trends or habits in our lives as wives. Each chapter in A Wife’s Secret to Happiness highlights a specific blessing God wants to give to Christian wives, and contrasts two different wifestyles—one that attracts God’s blessing in our lives, and the other that rejects it. Just as we are intentional in selecting our style of clothing or home décor, I encourage wives to find intentionality in how they approach daily actions, attitudes, and perspectives as a wife.
7. What unique challenges do wives face in the 21st century?
One of the unique challenges wives face is the way a negative perspective of men is encouraged in our present society. TV shows that portray husbands as bumbling idiots. Commonplace conversations poking fun at our spouse’s weaknesses or sharing things that would embarrass them. Acceptance of a husband or father as “man-child” in his own home. Often times, we don’t realize how everyday norms are actually affronts to the marriage relationships we desire, and I share plenty of examples from my own painful learning experiences in the book.
8. How does Jared handle your writing and speaking about your marriage?
He’s my biggest supporter. I tend to speak more openly about things than Jared does, so I’m diligent to make sure he’s comfortable with what I share before I volunteer the information to anyone—especially in print or from a stage. This way, I know that what I communicate remains honoring to him.
9. What part of this book is your favorite/means the most to you?
My favorite part of the book is the Real Life #Wifestylin testimonies at the end of each chapter. I wanted to include these to encourage readers with testimonies of other wives who’ve applied the theme of the chapter to their own life and seen God prove faithful.
10. After a wife has read this book, what do you hope she walks away with?
All the good things!
I hope every reader hears God’s desire to be involved in her marriage. That as she reads each chapter, she’d hear His affirmation of her identity and worth. That she’d identify enemy lies and heavy burdens so she could leave them behind, and that she’d leave this book equipped, empowered, and excited to follow the Lord’s instruction for her life in greater measure.