Invite Chivalry into Your Marriage
- Thursday, January 01, 2009
Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things. ~ Philippians 4:8 NIV
Love breeds chivalry, and accepts nothing less. When we wait on the Lord, allowing Him to have control of our relationship lives, He leads us to His best for us. That is where chivalry lives. ~ David W. Dickey, network administrator
"SOME SAY THE age of chivalry is past, that the spirit of romance is dead. The age of chivalry is never past, so long as there is a wrong left unredressed on earth," wrote British Anglican clergyman and writer Charles Kingsley. Perhaps then, it is time to right one wrong left unredressed. Forget the we’re-technologically-superior-more-intelligent-andmore-independent self-talk we’ve been feeding ourselves for years. Being technologically superior to the generations before us doesn’t erase our yearning for the mystery and magic of an old-fashioned love affair, does it?
Think about it: Hollywood certainly understands the feminine heart! They capitalize on the very notion that women will always be drawn to the "stuff" that fairy tales are made of. The idea that a man would proclaim his love for us, or wrestle to the finish to defend our honor, answers the age-old question inscribed on most every woman’s heart: Am I lovely enough to be protected, defended, and cherished by a man of honor—the man of my dreams?
Warriors in Training
It was a glorious Friday afternoon in the fall of 1974, and my sophomore year of college. Working our way down the hall from philosophy class, we had just wrapped up a weeklong discussion of the current culture’s values and customs. The class consisted of a colorful cast of characters. With the feminist movement in full swing, some of the young women were incensed that we were still considered the weaker gender. Using vivid descriptions, they expressed that anger. It was my first exposure to male bashing.
Undaunted, the professor asked the guys if they thought, given the strength of the women’s movement, chivalry was still alive. Did the guys ever come to life! Never before had they been as vocal or participatory. Even the ballplayers who typically did more sleeping than speaking in class, found their voices that day.
The consensus? The guys were mystified by girls’ misinterpretation of their well-intended acts of kindness. What was once called consideration was now called chauvinistic. Society, it seemed, was trying to persuade us that fathers and grandfathers completely missed the mark when they instilled in their sons and grandsons the ideal of treating a lady like a lady, with gentility and respect.
"Make up your minds, girls! What do ya’ll want from us?" Paul, the captain of the baseball team vented—his Hollywood good looks highlighted by his deep Southern drawl. His band of brothers on the team echoed his frustration and uncertainty. And, with the ideology of chivalry left largely unsolved, class was dismissed.
Spilling into the corridor after class, continuing the conversation, a group of us soon reached the first of several double doors. Leslie and I paused while Paul held the door for us to pass through.
Take some time together with your husband and discuss your ideas of chivalry. Sometimes our ideas and expectations are different than spouse’s—thus disappointment sets in. Discuss where your ideas of chivalry originated and on what they are based.
With the overstated, fun-loving sense of style he was known for, Paul held the door with his right our hand, and, tucking his left arm in at the waist, bowed, and said, "After you, ladies!"
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