Katherine was a nun. Martin Luther was a priest and a monk, but after studying scripture, wrote about the importance of marriage and having children. She, along with other nuns, read the book and wanted out of the convent to become wives and mothers.
Luther rescued them and tried finding homes or families for all of them. He couldn't find one for Katherine, so he eventually married her even though he didn't have feelings for her. He said it was to spite the devil...so romantic! So there was no love or attraction but a commitment to the principles of the Bible and service to God.
They didn't have an easy life. They had six children, two died. They lived in a big, old house that was always full of people. They lived in great poverty. Luther had a lot of physical ailments, but she always nursed him to health waiting on him hand and foot. She studied herbal remedies and fed her family healthy.
When he would fall into his frequent bouts with severe depression, she would hold him, pray for him, comfort him, and read Scripture to him. She drove the wagon, looked after their fields and gardens, purchased and pastured cattle, brewed beer, rented horses, sold linen, helped edit his writings, prepared meals, kept house, raised kids, entertained guests...
By all accounts, Katherine was a wonderful mother and Martin a loving and fun father who spent his evenings playing music for his children and teaching them the Bible, which was a welcome and joyous diversion from his busy and stressful life.
He wrote, "The greatest gift of grace a man can have is a pious, God-fearing, home-loving wife, whom he can trust with all his goods, body, and life itself, as well as having her as the mother of his children."
Now that, my dear readers, is an example of what submission and being a true help meet looks like!
Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
All the italics are from Mark and Grace Driscoll's book Real Marriage