Written by Steve Goode
I have a topic for Christian husbands to ponder regarding the way they demonstrate how much they value their wife. According to Encarta, value is the worth, importance, or usefulness of something to somebody. To a scuba diver an oxygen tank may hold irreplaceable value. If you are a programmer then a computer may hold great value to your efforts, but what about a husband? A Biblically obedient husband understands that apart from his relationship with Christ that his wife is the most valuable treasure in his life! (Eph 5:25)
Recently I had the privilege of eating with one of my vendors so we could discuss some important business and negotiate some matters pertaining to our companies. Somehow the conversation shifted from work, to spiritual matters and we began to discuss the vendor’s marriage.
The conversation went into deep waters rather quickly as we began to discuss things about the vendor’s wife, family, and his hobbies. It turns out that the vendor was an avid golfer who enjoyed spending many hours away from home with his golf buddies at an average of 80 dollars a round. I asked him how long he had been married and he told me only two years with no kids. Something seemed to change in his countenance when we went from golf to marriage. I pried a little deeper and asked him what his wife enjoyed doing. The vendor said his wife was a school teacher who was immersed in her job in Charlotte, but he could not name one single thing his wife enjoyed doing in the form of an activity or hobby. I also noticed the perplexed expression on his face that I would dig into an area of his life that appeared to be lacking. In the course of 20 minutes we were able to uncover the fact that after two years of marriage his wife was anything, but a priority and that the influence of his in-laws and his own hobbies were creating mounting friction in the relationship. Not being able to let it go I asked one more question to stir the pot. “Do you see any issues with your scenario?” The expression I received was priceless and sad all rolled into one. There are some additional complexities in this relationship that I will not go into, but there is a high probability that this relationship is headed the wrong way. I can picture the husband staring clueless at an empty bed one day asking himself, “What went wrong?”
What husbands can learn from this is that we will know, study, and spend time with what we value. The husband in this situation read, studied, and immersed himself in the game of golf. He took lessons on improving his swing, invested in expensive clubs, and spent thousands of dollars on green fees so he could improve his game. He understood that his hobby took precision, practice and finesse. My question to everyone is what returns will the husband receive from all this effort? Will it make his wife draw close to him? Will the wife be instilled with a sense of her purpose and value to the husband? I could pile on here, but ultimately the only thing the husband will gain is a selfish sense of satisfaction and accomplishment that will hold no value when he leaves the parking lot of the golf course. Don’t get me wrong because I am not asking anyone to boycott golf. This illustration could apply to any hobby, but ultimately anything that a husband values more than his wife will have no appreciable return, in fact it will ultimately create a potential bail-out. A husband cannot honor God if he values stuff more than his wife.
Husbands I encourage you this week to spend time listening to, studying and learning what your wife desires, wants and enjoys. Understand that it is a lifetime pursuit that requires continuous study, adjustment, and practice. Love isn’t something we fall into like an open manhole, it’s something we learn new and fresh everyday! It’s not something we simply try out and throw away, but an active action we demonstrate to our wife moment by moment. It can become exciting and adventurous in ways you could never begin to imagine! Furthermore I encourage
the husbands to give their wives more than one and two word answers to the things that are on their heart. Go deep with each other and show that you value and treasure your relationship with her. Do this by sincerely opening up your heart to her and valuing her opinions and desires. If you already have this kind of marriage I applaud your efforts and ask you to look for young couples you can encourage and mentor about their relationships. Most of all, I want to be sure that you place your wife second while placing God first. (Eph 5:25) Also remember that there will be moments in your relationship where all you may have is your obedience to God to get through a difficult trial or temptation.
In concluding let me direct you to a few useful scriptures to utilize in your marriages.
Submit to each other (Eph 5:22-24) Don’t live in constant Conflict (Matt 12:25) Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the Church because our relationships are to be a model of Christ’s relationship to us. (Ep 5:25) God’s design is for man not to be alone (Gen 2:18-25) Our marriages are to be intimate and fulfilling which Husband and Wife must promote and work toward (Gen 2:18, 24)