I remember a time during our engagement where Darren and I were really stressed out. We were trusting God for some money to come through to pay off a few things for our wedding, trying to make the best of our time alone before we got married, doing our best to look our best for our big day, and there was one week where it all became completely overwhelming and we were both high strung because of it.
This is the fourth addition to the Marriage series.
Darren had been working out for the few months leading up to our wedding, and let’s just get it out there now, my husband isn’t the most active person because he doesn’t enjoy the pain that comes afterwards (side note: this was before we were educated about this magical powder that is, glutamine) – the pain that he was experiencing from gym was making him really grumpy, and he was just exhausted all of the time – and it began to exhaust me too.The week that we were tired, and high strung, Darren came over to visit at my place. He was distant, and tired (as usual) and wasn’t very responsive. I don’t remember what exactly we had argued about, but I do remember that it ended in him having a bit of a breakdown – I couldn’t understand why, but I had to respect that he would rather spend the last bit of his singlehood with his family, at home, than with me, in mine.
Looking back now, I understand. Becoming a husband, its a pretty big deal – and it comes with a high price tag. As a Godly man, Darren knew exactly what God was going to expect from him once he became a husband, and that’s what was overwhelming him:
Ephesians 5: 25 – 33
25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. 28 So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. 30 For we are members of His body,[a] of His flesh and of His bones. 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”[b] 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.
Really high expectations here, but that’s not what I’d like to focus on in this post. The other day, I read the end of this scripture, and it felt like I had read something that I had never read before.
33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.
God’s Word instructs the husbands to love their wives, and then goes on to tell the wives to respect their husbands. I thought that it was really strange that we, as wives weren’t instructed to love our husbands. And then, it hit me: to a man, respect is love.
See, there’s nothing worse for a man that to feel belittled by his wife, the one that is supposed to be his biggest cheerleader, his number one, the one that is meant to have created a peaceful home for his heart and mind. That is the most hurtful thing that you could ever do to him – in private or in public.
And there’s nothing worse for a woman than feeling unloved, unaccepted.
I was bowled over at this realisation, but that, right there, is the key to a good marriage. God has given us the key, the tools to a successful marriage but we don’t use it because it feels better to give into our flesh than to be obedient to the instructions that God gives us through His Word, and looking back now, the times that Darren and I have had arguments that were blown way out of proportion was when I disrespected him because I felt unloved.
It’s funny how God first instructs the husbands to love first, and then the wives to respect – because the lead is taken from the man.
I know that as a woman, it isn’t easy to respect a man that isn’t showing you any love, but beautiful wives, if I could just encourage you: if you have spoken to this man, cried to him, begged him, or even ignored him to drive the point home that you need to be loved and it hasn’t worked, all you can do now is pray, because people can’t change people, only God can.
I’d also like to encourage you to invest in yourself, I read a lot because I am convinced that investing in my mind and soul can only add value to myself. I have been reading a book called The Power of a Praying Wife by Stormie Omartian, and it is excellent. The revelation that I received about this scripture was brought forward through this book.
I would love to hear from you! Please leave your comment below 🙂