Book Review - The Ideal Wife by Jacquelin Thomas

****I didn’t give too much about this book because the subject matter is very sensitive****

So yes another book by Jacquelin Thomas, if you find an author you like read more of their books. I appreciate her ability to use the bible as a tool for enlightened and not a weapon for destruction. It brings the bible in modern times and challenges my thinking.

I'm sure by now everyone has heard 'wives submit yourselves to your husband' at least once. It's truly biblical don't believe me check out in Ephesians 5:22. Well as a Christian woman who is married I agree with this. Before all the feminists beat me up check out the verses before and after to get the panoramic view. It encourages husbands to 'love their wives as Christ loves the church.' And, trust me, Christ LOVES, LOVES, LOVES the church, so much he laid down his life, so please don't get it twisted. Love and submission in my book almost go hand and hand, can't have one without the other. This is one of the foundations the book uses. It challenges submission and love and their relation to boundaries and personal convictions. The story is actually based on the story of Queen Vashti, the queen before Esther.

Before this book I never realized the significance of Queen Vashti. In the first book of Esther, King Ahasuerus dismisses Queen Vashti because of her refusal to come out to be viewed by guests at the King's party; noting this request was made when he was 'merry with wine...' O_o According to some scholars, the King requested the Queen to come out with nothing on but her crown. Even if this is not the full truth the Queen was to be kept only for the King. A Queen is a King’s most “prized" possession. Once a queen was named she was kept away from the public eye unless it was for special occasions or requested by the King. Queen Vashti knew this, and therefore seems to me her direct refusal was more for the honor of the Queen, then the embarrassment of the King. However, this had to happen in order for Esther to take her place as Queen and help save the Jews. Sometimes things happen and we don't understand why until we see the full picture. Queen Vashti while defending her honor was dismissed as Queen to allow Esther to come in and save her 'people' from the hands of Haman.

Now before I go on I must say I am no way the ideal wife, I'm striving, but I know I have quite a ways to do. However, the book challenges wives, and husbands alike, to reevaluate what makes them 'ideal.' I believe, as I always have, that being 'ideal' has a lot to do with being equally yoked. If you are with someone who shares the same beliefs/values and such with you, you are more likely to work things out and be able to discuss things openly and honest. Next, I must say it is important before and during marriage to be completely honest with your partner about EVERYTHING. Leave no stone unturned, no closet door unopened and don't be afraid as a partner to ask. Marriage is hard enough without the secrets and lies.

So back to the book, Jana, a fervent Christian and recent newlywed with the desire to be the ideal wife to Lawrence, a prominent lawyer, struggles continuously with her desire to please God and her new husband. Lawrence requests of Jana continuously cause her to question her new husband, and in return cause him to question her ability to be the ideal wife. Together they struggle with a lifestyle that cost Lawrence his first marriage and might, ultimately, cause him his second. With the help of her sister, Robyn and her friend, Graciela, and her spiritually reasoning she learns sometimes success requires failure to save those around you.