What’s the deal with Debi Pearl?

Have you ever read the book, “Created to be his Help Meet?”  I have.  It’s helped countless number of women to be better wives:  nicer, fairer, more gracious.  It certainly helped me!

But what’s the deal with the book?  What’s the deal with the behavior it generates in women?  What’s the deal with the degrading advice, and the overall tone that asserts that wives are to be subservient to their husbands?

Debbie Pearl basically says, “God created man in His image; then He created Eve from Adam’s rib.  So, Eve was created in Adam’s image.  Not God’s.”

Therefore . . . Adam has worth.  Adam has purpose and meaning.  Eve?  Well . . . do what Adam says, okay?

Don’t get me wrong.  I liked the book A LOT at one time.  For a few years, I enjoyed the person I had become.  I enjoyed the fairy tale marriage I produced.  But the problem was, as the years went by, I grew in the Lord.  I began to see Debbie Pearl’s book for what it was:  a formula.  A set of legalistic rules and guidelines and principles to live by.

My friends and I (who had formed a ‘Created to be his Help-Meet’ book club, to discuss and go over every nuance of every page) eventually tired of the BS.

Years later, my husband would tell me, “you’ve become a smartass.”

Well, not really.  It’s just that I was not kissing his feet anymore.  I was not afraid of him anymore.  I was maturing in my life in Christ and was therefore becoming more me.  The shackles of religion were falling off, and I was being set free.

Okay.  So, to answer the question, “what’s the deal with her book?”  Well, I don’t know.  It’s just a very in-your-face, c’mon-stop-complaining-about-him kind of book.  Debbie Pearl makes the claim that every wife has something against her husband, some grudge, some complaint, some “thing” that is hindering her from really enjoying married life.  And Debbie is right in most cases.  Let’s face it, wives . . . we are forever trying to control those poor boys, are we not?  (Hello!  The curse of Genesis 3!)

Man, we need to let it go.

But don’t use Debbie Pearl’s book as your impetus.  Use the grace of God.

Learn that God does not expect you to be perfect, so that you can give your husband grace for not being perfect either.

Learn that God has totally forgiven you of all your sins – past, present and future – so that you can learn to forgive your husband’s sins.

Learn that God relates to you through the New Covenant, through your inheritance in Christ, and that you are essentially a trillionaire princess daughter of the King of the Universe . . . so that you won’t really expect that much of your husband.

Poor guy’s only human after all.

Don’t Fear Your Feelings

Don’t fear your feelings.

Our feelings can be so strong that we are tempted to want to numb them.  We can be tempted to think that feelings are the enemy, that feelings are dangerous, that feelings must be overcome.

But shouldn’t feelings be felt?

An email I attempted to craft this morning left me feeling annoyed and depressed and despondent.  Why?  Because of the thoughts I had been struggling with that past hour.  My ‘bad’ feelings were simply a result of what I had been thinking.

Our feelings are simply the emotional response to what we think.  Feelings arise as a response to what we are thinking, and of course our thinking can be quite sinful and evil.  When your thinking goes awry, it is best to take the apostle Paul’s advice and give thanks in every circumstance, pray continually and rejoice always.

But, feelings.  They are simply emotions.  You can feel angry at your brother, or your mother or your spouse.  And what’s wrong with that?  Nothing.  Anger is a normal part of life.  Anger is not necessarily a problem.  But when your anger propels you to think about being violent – with either weapons or words – then that is a problem.  Acting on that thought would be a very serious problem.  Instead…

Take a deep breath, go for a jog, take a hot shower, whatever.  But, I’m not here today to talk about anger management.

I want to say this:  don’t be tempted to think that feelings are dangerous.  They are normal and natural and a wonderful part of our humanity.

Our feelings are a magnificent design feature created by our God.  When our feelings are ‘good,’ we experience pleasure.  When our feelings are ‘bad,’ we experience pain.  Don’t numb those bad feelings.  Let them run their course.  Experience them.  And talk to God about them.

It’s especially important to pray if you do not understand your feelings.  Ask God to help you.  Perhaps He will show you that your ‘bad’ feelings are the result of erroneous thinking or sinful desires.  But, maybe not.  Maybe your anger or depression is normal.

Thoughts can be false.  Feelings are a blessing.  They are a gift.