So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband. Eph. 5:33
I came across this article by Emerson Eggerichs, Believing the Best About Your Spouse. It’s really a quick, worthwhile read. A few years ago Daniel and I went through his DVD series, Love and Respect, so I was already familiar with his approach. But what struck me in this short article is how much I don’t do it. My first tendency isn’t to believe the best about my husband.
Usually my FIRST inclination is to think he left that pile of dirty clothes on the floor again to disrespect me. Or that he chooses to work late because he doesn’t value me or time with me. Or he gets up late and doesn’t help get the kids ready for school because he doesn’t notice or care that I was up several times in the night with another child. I let these little things grow and fester into resentment. That resentment affects our marriage and my ability to love him like Jesus calls me to.
The truth is, these issues are less about him, and more about me. Really, what does it say about me that my first judgement of my life’s partner is impugning?
I married him because I did believe him to be a good-willed man. I still do. I still believe that he is full of integrity, pure motives, and a loving heart. But when I drift into selfishness I forget all those things.
I talk to a lot of women. And I know that I am not alone in this. There’s a lot of us out there who tend to see the worst in our husbands and not the best. When we look at them we see their faults, their habits that annoy us, or even their spiritual blemishes.
So I want to leave us with some truly inspired words from 1 Cor. 13 to think about today.
- Love is patient
- Love is kind
- Is not jealous
- Love does not brag and is not arrogant
- Does not act unbecomingly
- It does not seek its own
- Is not provoked
- Does not take into account a wrong suffered
- Does not rejoice in unrighteousness but rejoices with the truth
- Bears all things
- Believes all things
- Hopes all things
- Endures all things
Today I need to focus on seeing the best in my husband. I need to love better. I need to forgive more. And I need to remember he loves me too.
Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Col. 3:13