What Wonder Woman Taught Me about Marriage

I’m going to take a brief pause from our story this week to tell you about how Wonder Woman made me cry. 

Josh and I love super hero movies. We know, we know. The plot is predictable; the stories essentially repeat themselves over and over again; and the scripts are always borderline cheesy. But this is why we love them, friends. I love to watch good triumph over evil again and again and again – in a world that is not real full of people who are pretty. Superhero movies comfort me, quite frankly. And Josh likes the battles scenes. 

As a result, Wonder Woman was an easy choice for us on our date night the weekend it opened. Before arriving, I knew little to nothing of the story of Wonder Woman. I never saw the sixties version starring Lynda Carter. I knew she wore red and blue. The end. I had no idea what to expect.

Can I tell you that from the moment of the opening shot on the island of Themyscira as the Amazon’s trained with one another and then a bit later fought in legitimate combat, I was transfixed? Here were all of these beautiful, muscular, curvy women fighting with intentionality and fierce, robust, strength. For one, the big-boobed, big-hipped, big-thighed, all around curvy girl inside of me breathed out in utter gratitude and awe. For another, to have it communicated to me from the big screen that there is a warrior nature inside of me, gosh it was empowering. 

 And as much as I loved all of that, I was preparing myself for this to be a “Woman Power” movie. You know the kind – that says that women really don’t need men, that we are self-sufficient and men are really just dumb props. I was prepared to feel really bummed about that because I don’t agree. Men are as important to women as they are different from them – and vise versa. 
 Then Steve Trevor appears (Chris Pine) and by his every action emits a deep sense of respect – albeit surprise – toward the Amazon women, particularly Diana (Gal Gadot). He doesn’t demean or gawk or condescend. Neither is he stupid or weak or incapable. He practices restraint when you expect him to make a move, empowers Diana when you expect him to take over, and demonstrates determination to protect her when you expect him to display her as a trophy. 
On the flip side, Diana is somehow able to remain deeply compassionate and forcefully strong. She asks questions of Trevor that she doesn’t know the answer to, receiving his knowledge with humility and grace. She doesn’t discard him or push him away believing she can live without him. Instead, she approaches him with honest curiosity and unashamed affection. She doesn’t jerk away when he places his hand on her back. She isn’t determined to appear stronger even though, in this movie, she IS physically stronger. Simultaneously, she refuses to shrink away from her calling in order to fall in line with men alongside her. 

They fight long and hard and smart and desperate under a deep sense of responsibility. 

He is strong. 

She is strong. 

He is driven by honor. 

She is driven by compassion. 

He is fighting in the physical realm. 

She is fighting in the “spiritual” realm.

He sacrifices his body.

She sacrifices her control and clings instead to hope.

Friends, this is what marriage can be. 

I know women who are fighting battles their men know nothing of. Spiritual battles that wage in the heavenlies against the hearts and souls of their marriages, their children, their friends, their churches, their cities, their countries, and their own selves. They are fierce and strong and compassionate and fortitudinous. They come in the form of little old ladies, young, single women, mamas beside cribs, and kick butt career women. Do not underestimate the power of compassion, prayer, and sheer will in the hands of a woman.

I know men who are fighting battles their women know nothing of. Physical battles of provision and sacrifice in a world that demands they be either passive or barbaric. They are fighting hard to be strong and kind, to lift their wives, their children, their friends, their churches, their cities, their countries high above themselves and their own desires. They are bold and sound when the world is loud and confusing. They come in the form of retired men, millenials seeking to be more than what the world has labeled them, daddy’s beside cribs while the mamas get some much needed rest, white collar corporate bosses and blue collar tradesmen. Do not underestimate the power of honor, prayer, and self-sacrifice in the hands of a good man. 

In the end, the world needed them both. In the end, they needed one another. God stitched us together – man and woman – on purpose. In order for us to win the battle that wages against our homes, our churches, and our world we must all – man and woman – be willing to pick up the weapons God has given us and fight with every fiber of our being. It isn’t either or in our marriages, friends. It’s both and.

So, as the movie came to a close, I was moved to the point of tears – mostly just because I saw a glimpse of what I think God created marriage to be. And that encouraged me and challenged me and made me tender toward my man. For that, thanks to Hollywood – but mostly, thanks to a God who weaves Himself into the hearts and minds of humanity, who takes whatever He wants and speaks through it to whomever He pleases – to a God who possesses all truth and all creativity and all goodness. 

Also, if you are looking for a good date night movie, this is your ticket. It’s clean and moving and well-acted. And Chris Pine. Good glory. And Gal Gadot. Sweet heaven. There’s something for everyone. You’re welcome.

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