I loved being married.
Over 8 years with my amazing wife Cherie I can honestly say I've enjoyed way more of the minutes than I've hated.
Granted, it is the most unique relationship you will ever have in your life if you think about it. One man and one woman with all of their baggage, expectations, anticipations, dreams, hopes, fears, and Faith are placed into the cage of life with the a timer that reads "until death do they part". You can only imagine what "fun" comes up with that scenario. Yes, only God could have come up with such a plan…but I love the plan.
I love it because in order for it to have any chance it requires Faith, hope, love, and fun for it to work. However, for it to thrive it requires one key ingredient…teamwork. Man and woman working side-by-side tackling all of life's obstacles and mountain top moments. Each separately wired with unique God-given abilities, but asked to work together to make the relationship click.
But men I want us look at ourselves for a moment and ask this question:
"What Have I Done For Her Lately?"
Now, before you get your Flintstones club out of the closet and beat your chest while you grunt in disagreement, pull up a rock and keep reading.
I'm not sure when the definition of being man was somehow tied to how much we can make our wives do for us so we can do what we want, but it seems to be happening more and more. I see so many wives staggering to maintain the weight of being a mother, a homemaker, an employee, a friend, a peacemaker, and wife. All the while their husband will come home from work only to hop on the computer, play video games, watch TV, play softball, or talk Fantasy Football with their buddies like Junior High girls. And that's just the guys that come home in time for their wives to see them. There is a whole other group of workaholics that have weekend families at best.
Listen I'm not saying any of those things above are inherently bad. Heck, we all need a release, a hobby to enjoy, and to provide for our families but when these start to come at the expense of our wives sanity and/or our marriage that's where the problem lies. I know when I feel the best about my world as a man is when I know my family is taken care of in ALL respects including how my wife is doing.
Recently, I prayerfully did a self inventory of how I was doing as a husband. With a lot of feedback from my wife, I realized I needed to step up in some areas. Understand I did this so we could improve on our solid marriage not so I could get a little more "action". Your missing the point if that is you goal I'd much rather have you accept the challenge to assess how you are doing as a husband in the effort to make your marriage a success.
Perhaps consider these:
- If you asked your wife on a scale of 1-10 how you are as a husband how would you rate?
- How much of who you are as a husband (good or bad) is determined by your father growing up?
- How much do you look to Scripture for wisdom on being a husband?
- Dads, when you come home, who do you kiss first? The kids or your wife?
- When was the last time you and your wife talked for over 30 minutes at one time without an agenda?
- What does your wife want to accomplish in the next 5 years?
- What are 3 things that you could do right now that could help your wife and marriage with little to no personal sacrifice to you? (Ex: Fold the laundry, empty the dishwasher, get the oil changed in her car)
- What are 2 things that you could do in the next month that could help your wife and marriage with minimal personal sacrifice? (Ex: Plan a date night and you find the babysitter, quit a recreation team for a season and let you wife have that night to herself, turn your cell phone off when you get home for 30 days)
- What is 1 thing you could do within the next year that could significantly help your wife and marriage with noticeable sacrifice to you? (Ex: Alter your work schedule to work a day from home, ask for a transfer to a location closer to home, (if she desires) look for ways for your wife to quit her job so she can stay at home with the kids full time)
Please hear me, I'm not saying I have it all figured out. In fact my 1-10 rating in my mind is much lower than even my wife said! What I do know, is that I desperately want to have a marriage that is God honoring and set-up for success. I know I love my wife so much that I would go to the ends of the earth for her and that includes sacrificing things I enjoy so she is cared for.
Marriage is awesome, difficult, awesome again, a little more difficult, add a side of frustrating, and then back to awesome but in the end is totally worth every up and down.
Men we need to show our wives through our actions that we are pursuing Godly marriages and relationships and I think it can start by asking ourselves, "What Have I Done For Her Lately?"