It is sad, but so many husbands are oblivious to the fact that they are on a path toward destruction in their marriage and much of it is their fault. I’ve seen five consistent things that men do to drive women to the point of calling it quits. I pray that my fellow husbands are willing to consider these truths and decide to what degree they are true in their own lives.
1. Be The Spiritual Follower
God has called the man to be the spiritual leader of the marriage, but more often men are running from this responsibility and leaving the burden to the wife. The weight can be incredibly daunting and places a huge wedge in the marriage. The fatigue of always being the one to beg, plead, or sadly drive to church alone is crushing. At some point our wives will ask the question, “How can I live in a house or raise our kids with someone who doesn’t put God first?” If you want to lose your marriage, be a spiritual follower.
2. Place Your Job Ahead Of Your Family
Most men are quick to find their identity in their jobs and the fact that they provide for the family. Spending increased time away from the family is easily justified by the mantra “Someone’s gotta put food on the table!” or “I’m just trying to make our life comfortable.” Without question, providing for the family is vital to a marriage, but to what extreme and at what cost? Rarely do men ever stop long enough to ask the question “Is this what my wife really wants?” I’m willing to bet my last lock of hair that most men would prefer more time with their wife then a newer car or bigger home. If you want to lose your marriage, put your job before your family.
3. Place Your Hobbies In Front Of Your Family
It’s amazing to see the concessions that family’s have to make so guys can fulfill their fantasies through other grown men’s athletic abilities. They will study, scheme, trade, and invest to make sure they are the winner of a $25 gift certificate to The Outback. But yet if you ask them about what their kids are struggling with in school or what time soccer practice is, they won’t have a clue. Time with their wives gets replaced with slow pitch softball trips, fantasy football drafts, and amateur MMA fights at the local VFW. If you want to lose your marriage, put your hobbies before your family.
4. Always Think Of Yourself
There was only one Man that walked on water, but you’d be surprised how many men want to challenge that title. From the moment the day begins to the final moments in the recliner as their eyelids flutter shut, the world revolves around them. Helping with laundry, giving the kids a bath, taking the trash out, or even picking up their dirty underwear are tasks too menial for the self-focused man. If you want to lose your marriage, make everything about you.
5. Ignore Everything
One of the skills I see a lot of husbands working hard to develop is selective dementia. It’s a unique skill that requires you to be able to think everything is ok while simultaneously ignoring reality around you. When fully developed, a man with this ability can think his marriage is fine in autopilot mode. He believes his kids respect him even though they play no role in their lives. He thinks a family budget is only for people with no money even though his own family has no money. All the while being comfortable knowing more career statistics about the starting quarterback for the Bears than his own wife. If you want to lose your marriage, ignore everything around you.
Men, I say this with a mouth full of sarcasm and a heart full of sadness at the reality of these five things. There are marriages that are crumbling because of one or all of these truths in our homes and we have to do something about it.
It’s time that we start being the men that God want us to be in our homes and it begins with believing that when God tells us to serve our wives that we believe it. If we want different marriages and families we have to start doing different things. If we keep doing what we are doing, we will keep getting what we’ve got.
Is there culpability on our wives’ side of the table?
Is a marriage a partnership of one man and one woman committed to each other and to God?
But that does not give us the right to checkout on our responsibility to do what we are called to do.
It’s time to buck up and start working on our marriage at least as hard as we do our portfolio or surround sound systems. We need to start leading our families and do the things we know we should be doing.
If we don’t, the 50% divorce rate average will continue to rise and we will only need to look in the mirror to see why it’s happening.