Note: This is the much-anticipated second part to this series. Be sure to check out Part One!
Husbands, in our last post, we covered the first three things you must do to love your wife: Be close to her, open up with her, and seek to understand her.
Now, we’ll cover the next three things you must do.
“But those who marry will face many troubles in this life” (1 Corinthians 7:28)
Every couple experiences conflict or tension at some point in their relationship. But when this happens, you and your wife aren’t fully at peace. Without peace, she doesn’t feel close, doesn’t feel you’re open, and doesn’t feel like you understand.
And all this is traced back to the tension that has come between you.
But as the man, if you take the lead in working through the conflict, you’ll deepen your understanding of each other, and appreciate one another all the more.
As you have conflict, your wife can feel rejected by you in a way that you don’t feel rejected by her. That’s why she’ll want to have things resolved, and she’ll move toward you to get this done.
So don’t refuse to make peace by running from the conflict. Conflict isn’t a sign of a bad marriage. The Bible is clear in saying that you will have troubles in your marriage.
As man and woman, you both have equal but different needs. But as the man, as you take the lead in acting together to work out your tensions, your relationship will deepen more and more.
But if you ever try to end a conflict by saying, “Just drop it,” your wife will likely think you’re still angry with her. She’ll feel as though the issue is still unresolved, making it hard for her to be happy.
So how do you make peace with your wife? First, show a loving demeanor during conflict of any kind. It’ll touch the deepest part of her heart.
Second, confess your part of the blame. The percentage of guilt isn’t the issue. The real issue is loving her and resolving the conflict.
So admit when you’re wrong and apologize by saying, “I’m sorry. Will you forgive me? I want to understand your feelings, and why you react as you do.”
Sincere words of apology are powerful to your wife. It can heal the whole situation, and you”ll experience harmony once again.
So let her vent her frustrations and hurts, and don’t get angry or close her off. Don’t nurse bitterness, and reassure her of your love. And pray with her after a hurtful time.
“I made an agreement with my eyes. I promised not to look at another woman with sexual longing” (Job 31:1)
Has your wife ever asked you, “How much do you love me? What is it that you love about me? Will you love me when I’m old and gray?” What’s going on here?
Husbands, your wife wants reassurance of your love. Your reassurance energizes her.
Your wife is a one-man woman, committed to you. At times, however, she may wonder if you’re a one-woman man.
It’s easy for your wife to think this since we live in a swimsuit-issue world. She may see you being attracted by a beautiful lady walking by, and take this as a possibility that you may be unfaithful to her.
To be candid, she’s probably insecure in this area and needs reassurance or your commitment, not joking and teasing.
But when your wife sees that you’re trying to make Jesus the Lord of your life in every area, including your marriage, she feels more secure. When she’s assured of your love and loyalty, she gets energized and motivated.
It’s the way God designed her, and it’s why the marriage covenant is based upon loyalty – until death do you part.
So do some self-evaluation. What are you feeling for your wife? Are you being as loyal to her as you could be?
Don’t be critical of her in front of others. Rather, speak highly of her in front of others. Be involved in the things that are important to her.
“Her husband also rises up, and he praises her. He says, ‘Many women do noble things. But you are better than all the others'” (Proverbs 31:28-29)
God made your wife so that she wants to be esteemed and honored. To honor your wife, as well as your covenant with God, treasure her.
Your wife will feel treasured when she knows you have her on your mind first and foremost.
So what are practical ways to esteem your wife?
First, remember anniversaries and birthdays. For your wife, there are no more important dates than your anniversary and her birthday, as well as the birthdays of your children. Why?
Because for nine months she carries the baby in her womb and is asked, “When’s the due date?” And since childhood, she dreamed of her wedding day while playing dress-up and singing, “Here comes the bride!”
These dates are opportunities to show her that you esteem her by remembering them, and celebrating them with her.
Lastly, esteem your wife by letting her know you appreciate all that she does and who she is. Give her encouragement and praise, with kindness and enthusiasm.
Men, I hope you feel encouraged, empowered, and inspired to go love your wives!
Dustin Riechmann created Engaged Marriage to help other married couples live a life they love (especially) when they feel too busy to make it happen. He has many passions, including sharing ways to enjoy an awesome marriage in 15 minutes a day, but his heart belongs with his wife Bethany and their three young kids.