Adorned Study #11
A long-distance friend on Facebook is engaged. She wrote on her fiance’s wall this week,
“You are so easy to love!”
Anyone who has been married for a month or two, knows that husbands AND wives don’t STAY easy to love; both need grace at times in order to love the other as we should!
We need help and encouragement to keep loving our husbands as God loves us and for that reason, our wise and loving Father put instruction in His Word to help us when the love doesn’t feel so natural anymore.
That they (the older women) may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands,
Why isn’t love a natural response?
- Sin – Two sinners make up a marriage! We stand shoulder to shoulder before the cross. One is not better than the other!
- Selfishness and pride
- Our focus gets misplaced – We focus on the irritants instead of the blessings.
I smile at the wisdom of God to tell the older women to encourage younger women about loving their husband. How encouraging it is to know that the older woman struggled to love, too! What a testimony a divorced woman can also be to a younger woman about the important truths she learned in a very difficult time in her life and how God can help the younger woman keep her covenant of marriage. Again, we see how much we need one another!
The word for love that Paul uses here is “phileo – This is the friendship kind of love, not the romantic, passionate kind. It’s the love that says, not only do I love you, I like you! It conveys the idea of being a friend to our husband. We enjoy time with him. We enjoy being with him.
When we’re dating, all those things seem easy. We count the minutes until we get to be together again!
My husband and I lived three hours away from one another for a good part of our dating and engagement period. I could hardly wait until he would come visit for the weekend. I would put everything on hold so I could just spend time with him! After marriage its’ so easy to get too busy with life and busyness to stop and spend time together. When we put everything before spending time with our husband, we’re not loving him well.
Elizabeth George encourages wives to have a positive word she can use when he suggests an outing. I chose “sure!”
Want to go up with me to wash the car? Sure! Want to just go grab a hamburger for lunch? Sure!
Marriage, at its heart, is a sacred covenant between a man and a woman, designed to display to the world in Technicolor the covenant-keeping character and faithfulness of God Himself. …Human marriage is a story intended to draw people toward the gospel, showing them the love of God through two imperfect individuals whose lives become one in Him and who are devoted to one another for better or for worse…for life.
It’s good to remember that Adam needed a helper. Your husband – my husband needed a helper. They needed a companion, a friend to do life with them. It takes effort, but we need to intentionally pour into our marriages. Take time to “travel the scenic route.” That means finding time to talk, to share, to be together. We need to continue to develop interests as we age. Find things you could do as a couple. Find ministries where you can serve together. Keep on being One – not two individuals doing your own thing and bumping into one another on the way to the garage where you’ll get in your own cars and continue in the fast lane!
What is a wife to do about the irritants and the things she thinks her husband is doing incorrectly? PRAY. Ruth Graham said it well – It’s my job to love Billy, and God’s job to change him.
It’s not our responsibility to point out his faults. He’s well aware of them. It’s our job to be his cheerleader. To believe in him when all the world is against him.
You can go here and listen to the podcast on this chapter of Adorned. You will hear four practical encouragements regarding ways to love your husband well.
Let me end by asking, two questions –
Do you have a word that lets your husband know you’re happy about spending time doing what he suggests?
What could you do this week to be a friend to your husband?
Refresh the love for your husband,