Love you all, praying for you.
I just love Gods Word, it gives truth, and starting points. Foundations – for every good thing that God has for you, if you’ll receive it. Have you ever heard of the marriage foundation? Ephesians 5:33 - Love and Respect. (There’s a book of that title – worth the read). In Ephesians Chapter Five, God said Husbands love your wife, wives respect your husband. Why didn’t God tell husbands to respect their wife? Why didn’t God tell wives to love their husband? (Actually, he did, but we’ll get to that in a minute). Something that always puzzled me. Why do so many women insist that men treat them with respect? Who are you hanging out with that needs to be told that? How many men do you know that don’t? Why do you even know them? Why would you have any contact whatsoever with someone like that? Disrespectful men? You need to change your circle. God didn’t have to tell a husband to respect his wife because the command He gave husbands was infinitely higher. Love your wife means you lay down your life for them, like Jesus laid down his life for you! That is the polar opposite of disrespect. It’s at the other end of the spectrum. Love is a much bigger commitment than respect. If you love your wife, you will check off the respect box, long before you even start. If husbands love their wives, wives will love their husbands, they can’t help it. He gives her what she needs and longs for every day, she will just naturally love him, she can’t help it. How he treats her, makes it easy for her to love Him. A lot of husbands respect their wives, they were taught to respect women, but love? That means lay down their life, that’s a whole ‘nother level, and most men don’t do that, not naturally… That’s supernatural, it’s where you need God to help you through the Holy Spirit – to love your wife. Men, like women, don’t naturally love, it takes a decision, daily choices, humility, and grace. It takes selflessness. Women don’t naturally respect their husbands, they’re human. They want to do their own thing, and this culture tells them to be an independent woman - the opposite of honoring, respecting and submitting to a loving husband. If your husband doesn’t love well, it’s hard to respect him. If your wife doesn’t respect you, it’s hard to sacrificially love her. But God didn’t say love your wife if she respects you. He said, love your wife, lay down your life for her, like Jesus laid down his life for you, when you didn’t respect him. Wives, God didn’t say respect your husband if he deserves it, God said respect your husband – his role if nothing else, to honor God if nothing else. You respect the President of the United States, it doesn’t matter if your candidate is in the office or not. God put him there, and God can take him out. Husbands, God gave you a wife and He said to love your wife, with no qualifications. Wives, God gave you a husband, He said to respect your husband, with no qualifications. (Clearly this discussion is about people who obey God’s commands to treat all human beings with dignity. So we’re not talking to spouses in abusive situations to stay in harm’s way. That is not respecting your husband, to permit physical abuse. We’re obviously not talking about those situations where separation is required for safety.) But in normal marriages that are not abusive, why is it still so easy for married people to treat to their spouse worse than they treat others. Familiarity breeds contempt? No, it’s a ‘taking for granted,’ it is merely pure selfishness, rather than self-less-ness, that is the requirement of love and respect. Some people say the rudest things to their spouse that they would never say to anyone else. If you wouldn’t say that, or treat a co-worker that way, why are you treating your wife that way? Why are you treating your husband that way? You should be ashamed. If we follow I Corinthians 13 – the love chapter, that’s how we should treat one another. With patience, and kindness, not pride, never rude, self-less not self-seeking, not easily angered, keeping no record of offenses, truly forgiving and not holding it against them, always protecting, always trusting, always believing the best, always hoping, and always persevering in love, (persevering starts when you don’t want to), never failing to love and respect. God said submit to one another in love. So both husband and wife should love one another, and both husband and wife should show honor and respect, God’s word teaches that. But God’s command: Husband – you demonstrate love – lay down your life for your wife. Wives - you show honor and respect for your husband. Trust God to lead them to what they should do… you just do what you should do. And if you’re not married yet… Be very cautious in friendship (God said), be very cautious in who you marry. Those little things you see now, will be magnified then. Just because they’re attractive, doesn’t mean they are of noble character. What do they do when no one’s looking, what do they do when you’re not around? What do they do under pressure? Choose friends and a spouse wisely. The best way to find the right one, is to become the right one. See the Relationship Topics – 11 Things you need in a husband, and 11 Things you need in a wife. Not to select one, but to become one! You won’t change them, but you can change you! You can prepare to be what they need, God will take care of making them what you need. You can even do this after you’re married. But if you are not married yet, God’s way of approaching marriage – is polar opposite of the dating culture of this generation. Husbands, praying that God will help you love your wife, and lay down your life for her. If you ask Him, He will help you. Do that first, don’t worry about if she is respecting you or not. Leave her to God. Wives, praying that God will help you respect your husband. If you ask Him, He will help you. Do that first, don’t worry about what He is now, let God make him respectable, you just respect him. It’s amazing what God can do in your spouse, when you are committed to doing what God says, no matter what. They say marriage takes a lot of work. I don’t know if that’s true or not, but it does take humility, preferring them and their needs, over you and your needs. If you love your job, it’s not really work. Love your wife, Respect your husband, it’s God’s beginning step – His foundation for a successful marriage. Ask Him, He’ll help you. He wants you to have a great marriage! One that reflects Him, one that your children hope they have someday. That’s why He brought you the perfect partner. Not perfect, perfectly suited to you. Someone you can grow with. They’re not the perfect spouse right now, neither are you, this is a journey, a journey of love. It takes time, it gets better and better, if you will humble yourself, and do what God tells you, and trust them to Him. Don’t look around, the grass isn’t greener – that’s just the devil’s lie to destroy your marriage, and destroy you. Stick with this one, practice hedges. You do you, and God will handle them. If you will humble yourself, and commit fully, God’s grace will cover you, He will bring you to a unity where He commands a blessing. It’s so worth it!
Love you all,
Kelly Kamentz - Jesus follower, husband, father, and friend, helping others surrender time, thoughts, money, and testimony, to fulfill their purpose!