[management by God] making a stepford wife

Written by Dan King

Christ-follower. husband. father. author of the unlikely missionary: from pew-warmer to poverty-fighter. co-author of activist faith: from him and for him. director of family ministry at st. edward's episcopal church. president of fistbump media, llc.

November 24, 2010

I love the classic (and remake) movie The Stepford Wives. I think every man has thought about what it would be like to have that “perfect” wife. You know, the one that anticipates and meets your every need.

I also think that most women can even relate to the idea that it’d be cool to have a husband that caters to their every desire.

The movie makes an incredible statement about our human nature and the natural desire to want something without having to invest the effort that it takes to “earn” the kind of treatment that would come from the “perfect” spouse.

As I look at the next requirement for the manager-leader, I can’t help but to think about this perspective. The qualification here is that “wives are faithful in all things”.

As we explore this topic, it would be too easy to try to make a list of things that needed to be done in order to keep one’s wife “submissive,” but not only do I find that idea repulsive, but also not Biblical. I believe that while “submission” of the wife is quite Scriptural, I also believe that the wife is to be in a place of honor as far as the husband is concerned.

So rather than focus on what other people (the wife) need to do in order to fulfill this requirement, I want to focus on what personal responsibility is required to earn it. And…   this principle applies to women as well as men…

Basically it gets down to one thing. In order for a wife to be “faithful in all things,” then the husband also should strive to be worthy of that faithfulness.

I’m a firm believer in the idea that if you want to be loved, then you must make yourself lovable. If you want to be honored, then you must make yourself honorable. If you want to be trusted, then you must make yourself trustworthy.

The responsibility doesn’t rely solely on the other person, but on what we do to earn the desired state.

So what does it take to earn faithfulness? That’s a great question, and is one that deserves much more than this short overview can really provide, but I think a good start comes from “the Love chapter” (1 Corinthians 13). Let’s take a look at some of the basic meat of this passage, verses 4-7:

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Jesus exemplified all of these things. Because He was fully God, and because God is Love, then you can easily replace the word Love with the name Jesus, and still find each of these statements to be true. Jesus is patient and kind…   Jesus does not envy or boast…

Because Jesus is our ultimate example for how we should strive to live, then we should try to insert our own names into these statements.

If we’re honest with ourselves, then we’ll quickly recognize that most of us cannot truly say each of these statements with our own names in there. But this is the starting point of being worthy of earning the “faithfulness in all things”.

Seriously, what wife wouldn’t totally flip over a man that is patient, kind, not envious, not boastful, not arrogant, not rude, etc.? Men, if you want a wife that lifts you up and meets your every need, then become “love” to her.

The amazing thing is that this same principle applies to the workplace as well.

I believe that the reason this is one of the qualifications for the manager-leader is because the qualities that it takes to earn this type of faithfulness from the wife are qualities that help us to manage people in general.


Well, truthfully…   everyone wants to be loved, and this is how we can show them love.

So rather than a “question to consider”, I’d like to have you do a little exercise. Use this list of things that love is and that love is not, and place your name in front of each of them. Then start working on each one to make sure that you can live up to each of these statements. I’m sure that you’ll find that the respect and “faithfulness” of your spouse as well as the people that you lead will come MUCH easier…

(insert your name here) is patient
(insert your name here) is kind
(insert your name here) does not envy
(insert your name here) does not boast
(insert your name here) is not arrogant
(insert your name here) is not rude
(insert your name here) does not insist on his/her own way
(insert your name here) is not irritable
(insert your name here) is not resentful
(insert your name here) does not rejoice at wrongdoing
(insert your name here) rejoices with the truth
(insert your name here) bears all things
(insert your name here) believes all things
(insert your name here) hopes all things
(insert your name here) endures all things

Enjoy, and God bless!

See more from the management by God series!


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[management by God] making a stepford wife

by Dan King time to read: 4 min