August 9, 2013 - Marriage, Men Only

What exactly does the Bible mean when it says, “Husbands, love your wives?”

Can men really be men in today’s society, if they go around loving their wives? I hope you’re ready for this.

Sooner or later, somebody’s going to see me treating my wife with respect, placing her above all others. And then what kind of reputation will I have? This was a real argument from an acquaintance.

But that’s really the whole idea, right—for others to see our example and learn from us?

It seems that maybe we have the impression in America, that men are supposed to be so tough that they don’t show emotion, and that lovingly caring for their wives is a sign of weakness.

The fact is that it takes a real man to care for his wife in the manner Jesus commanded. Men are to love their wives more than their own lives, to be willing to die for them—in their place–literally.

That’s a tall order, and it’s real. It’s the first question we as men should ask ourselves—are we willing to do that. If not, we need to fix that, because it’s an absolute requirement.

How do we fix it? Well, to start with, if we don’t love our wives in that manner, it is entirely our problem. God doesn’t put this on the ladies—he puts it on us, gentlemen.

I realize that not all wives are easy to love (and not all husbands). They are human beings, and some humans are more difficult to live with than others. But we need to consider another possibility—if she is difficult to love, did we make her that way? Don’t shut me down here–stay with me for a minute.

If my wife is always snapping at me, did I build that into her over years of not listening to what she had to say, of not putting her first, or even worse—of criticizing her in front of others? That is a perfect source of bitterness.

Guys—don’t turn me off, because this is important. If we have fallen into these traps over the years, we can fix it—and we should.

We are commanded to love our wives, but they (our wives) are commanded to respect their husbands. If we are the husbands God has called us to be, they will love us as well.

This is not an easy task in some cases, but it is what we are called to do. It comes with great reward—a marriage that is blessed by God.

How do I start? Here are some basics.

  • Start acting and stop reacting
    • We have a tendency to protect our egos. This is not a Biblical response. We are to focus on our wives, not ourselves.
  • Take those steps forward
    • Start showing your love for her by doing things for her.
      • Flowers are nice, but cleaning up the kitchen is just as important. Don’t ever say, “But that’s women’s work” if you have any regard for your head.
    • If she asks you what you are up to, why you are doing these things, tell her.
      • Some wives may become suspicious when their husbands start being nice. That is the time to tell your wife that you were treating her wrong, and that God has shown you that. Even if she is still suspicious, she will see that it’s real when you don’t quit.
  • Get into the Word regularly
    • A man of God cannot be a man of God unless he is a man of the Word. Spend time in it, and it will influence you in the right ways—in your marriage, and in all you do.

This is an oversimplification of a difficult situation when there is discord in the home. But getting started is the most difficult part, and it’s our responsibility as men to begin.

Question: Do you have a battle to overcome before you can be the husband you want to be?