“It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky-Tonk Angels” by Kitty Wells
— Friday, July 20th, 2012 —
Earlier this week I wrote a blog post about the legacy of the late Kitty Wells. Wells is most famous for her song ”It Wasn’t God Who Made Honky-Tonk Angels.” The song made history because it was a response, from a woman’s perspective, to Hank Thompson’s hit “Wild Side of Life.” In his song, Thompson cynically berates his ex-wife who left him. He should have known, he sings, that she’d “never made a wife.” She was instead a “honky-tonk angel,” predestined to be unfaithful to him.
Wells argued, in a deceptively sweet and gentle voice, that women were driven to the honky-tonk nightlife not by God’s design but by years of life with men who “think that they’re still single.”
Miss Kitty’s protest is not against womanhood, being a wife, a lover or a mother. Instead, she is crying out for those things to be true. She is calling men to live in a way that is worthy of their God-given role in the family structure. In this episode we will consider what a crucified, self-sacrificial, Christ-shaped headship looks like in contrast to the predatory, juvenile “headship” that so pervades much of American culture.