Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered. (1 Peter 3:7)
The Tupperware Wife
In many homes, there is a special place that is sacred as a place for prized and valued possessions called the china cabinet. This piece of furniture is often itself a valuable piece of furniture handed down from generation to generation. In general a china cabinet is different from a curio cabinet by its construction and purpose. A china cabinet displays specialty dinnerware and crystal while a curio cabinet can be purposed for many different kinds of displays of things valuable to the owner. The idea behind the cabinets is to allow guarded storage of valuable items and is normally not intended for daily use. In the kitchen cabinets are everyday dishes and glassware that is not as prized as what is found in a china cabinet. Children learn early that breaking one of the regular dishes is met with disappointment but to break something from the china cabinet is an incredible loss with a higher level of distress than any other kind of dish. A distinction is made from the items of the china cabinet and those utensils for common everyday use. In 1942 Earl Tupper introduced the world to an unbreakable plastic bell-shaped container that would become known for generations as Tupperware. It revolutionized the home and would become a staple of modern kitchens. One of the things seldom seen in any home is a Tupperware cabinet and it would be very doubtful that Tupperware would be kept in a china cabinet. China dishware is a very delicate and costly material made various materials that create fine china, bone china, and porcelain. Tupperware is plastic and is nearly unbreakable and does not have the value of fine china.
Whether the apostle Peter had Tupperware in mind when he exhorted the husbands to honor their wives is not clear but the point of his admonition was very clear: husbands are to treat their wives as individuals of great worth. Giving honor unto the wife shows the respect due to her character as created by God when Eve was brought to man. Adam and Eve formed a union of love for one another as the Lord intended for each to show their respect for His divine pattern. Sin destroyed that union as the woman would be subjected to the man but this does not allow the husband to dishonor his wife. As the spiritual leader of the home, the husband must show the path of righteousness to his wife as treating her with the nobility of fine china, not Tupperware. A wife that is viewed as nothing more than a common, undesirable and necessary part of a marriage will not be elevated to be the place expected by God. She is not Tupperware but a prized possession that should be shown love, nourishment, cherishing and the example of Christ as head of the church. Paul wrote to the Ephesians to love their wives as Christ loved the church. It is clear the Lord did not view the church as a piece of common plastic but something so valuable and so highly prized that He gave His life for the church. Husbands are to dwell with their wives with understanding and to present their wives to the world as the beautiful creation of the finest of creations crafted by the hand of God. The woman is the weaker vessel not in mental abilities but the preciousness of her character in the home. Her place in the home should be honored by the man as fitting the delicate nature of her calling by the Lord. Husbands who love their wives as their own bodies will cherish their wives as vessels of honor.
There are too many Tupperware wives who are not honored by their husbands. It may be fair to say there are as many wives who want to be Tupperware wives and demand their rights in the home as leaders but this is not the pattern established by God. There is much for the woman to do in the home in her role of the spiritual fortitude of the husband and the children but her role remains in subjection to the man with chaste conduct accompanied by fear. Her beauty is not the outward adorning of the hair with gold or putting on fine apparel but the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit. When God looks down into the home, He wants to see the wife as a person treated like the finest china and not as a common dish of Tupperware. What is precious in the sight of the Lord is a wife who is refined with the godly character of righteousness. When the husband and wife come before the throne of God their prayers are not hindered. The prayers of the husband are tempered by his treatment of the wife as he dwells with her in understanding, giving honor to his wife as to the incredible worth and value she is to him and the godly home she creates. God will bless their home as He blesses their prayers for the wife is not treated like Tupperware but the finest of china.