It takes an equal effort from both the wife and the husband to make a marriage work. At the core of marital love, is a desire to be there for each other–regardless of the circumstances. It’s the daily choice to put the other’s interest before your own. For husbands everywhere, including myself, we need to make sure where not too caught up in the business of life that we fail to realize when our wives need us most.
When it comes right down to it, being a wife and/or mom is one of the world’s toughest jobs. That being the case, who wouldn’t from time to time, feel like throwing in the towel. Yet, that’s the beauty of this sacred oneness relationship, we are called to be there for each other. As a man of God, it’s not optional. We must show up for our wives.
While there are countless scenarios why our wives may lose hope and want to give up from time to time, here are three that I’ve seen personally on a regular basis in my own marriage and the married couples I know.
1. Your wife is simply worn out.
Like most wives and moms out there, my wife is driven by an unquenchable love for her family. If I’m working too many hours and not helping around the house, it means my wife is working double overtime. Our wives and the mothers of our children, are warrior-minded in their pursuits to take care of their families, and almost always, put the needs of others before themselves.
As a husband, I need to love my wife as my own body. What does this really mean? The same way I care about my own body I need to care for my wife. If my body is worn out, I need to make sure it gets the rest it needs. In the same way, we need to make sure our wives are getting the rest they need. If you’re like me, we need to be ultra intentional about this. Meaning, I need to remind myself on a weekly basis to evaluate how my wife is doing. As men, we must ask ourselves this question, “If I’m not taking care of the most important things, why am I so busy with everything else?”
2. Your wife needs your spiritual encouragement.
Over the past ten years, I’ve been involved in the active ministry of marriages and families. I wish I could say that it’s the norm that both the wives and the husbands share equal blame when it comes to marital problems, but that’s not what I’ve seen. Too often it’s due to the husband not being spiritually involved. While it’s great that so many churches have thriving women’s and children’s ministries, it’s a sad statement that so many men’s ministries are lacking. As Christ is the head of the church, the husband is called to be the the head of his marriage (1 Corinthians 11:3, Ephesians 5:23). Whether you agree or disagree with this, as men, we need to step up and be involved in the leadership of our families. Foremost, as a Christian husband and father, this requires me to take ownership of my God-given calling and build into my wife and children spiritually. As with Christ, we lead best when we love most.
For many wives, they would be elated if their husbands would spend some weekly time in God’s Word with them and lead family prayers. One thing I’m constantly convicted over is that I can’t adequately encourage my wife and children unless I’m personally spending time in prayer and in God’s word. Praying regularly for and with our wives will make a huge difference in their lives. I’ve never regretted the time I take to pray with and for my wife. From my wife’s perspective, it’s one of the most important things I do for her on a regular basis.
3. Your wife needs some one-on-one time with you.
Countless studies have shown that communication breakdown is a sure way to kill intimacy in a marriage that often leads toward feelings of loneliness and resentment. Whenever things start to get crazy in our house and I can sense my wife’s frustrations, it’s likely due to a breakdown of communication. It’s times like these when I need to devote some one-on-one time with my wife for the primary purpose of just listening to her.
Our wives are wired to want intimate fellowship with us–emotionally, spiritually, and physically. This can only be achieved if we’re dedicating some “alone time” with them. I know personally this translates to regular weekly meetings, as well as some special night outs every so often. They also need to hear from us how much we appreciate all they do for the family. When is the last time you showered your wife with some serious overdue praise for the way she takes care of you and your children?
Again, these are just three examples that I’ve personally seen why some wives are overwhelmed and feeling like they’re losing hope. After my relationship with God, there is no more intimate and sacred relationship than the one I share with my wife. If I’m not getting it done here as a man, I’m not succeeding in one of the most important roles of my life. That’s why it’s critical for us to make sure that God is leading this process.