I don’t feel like he loves me. He never listens to me anymore. Why is he always so distant? He never wants to be with me or the kids anymore. What happened to the man I fell in love with? How can I respect this man? These were common thoughts in my past. Can you relate to any of them?
Over and over I hear wives ask some variation of this question.
- Why should I respect my husband?
- He doesn’t deserve it.
- If only you knew the things he’s done (or hasn’t done).
- There’s nothing respectable about my husband.
Those are valid statements surely spoken from a place of longing and pain in many lives. I understand them because I have said them myself. For years I had no respect for my husband.
How to Stop Being Afraid of Respect In A Christian Marriage
GUEST POST by Tiffany Montgomery of Hope & Joy In Christ
If I’m honest, I was afraid to Respect my husband
You see, I always understood Respect in a 20th Century American way. Respect as defined by Webster Dictionary is “a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements.”
Respect had to be earned and could easily be lost. Giving my respect meant accepting a person -every part of that person. I thought of it as a personal endorsement that reflected on me directly.
He doesn’t seem to give any loopholes or stipulations. This is one of very few direct commands given to wives specifically.
Ephesians 5:33 NASB “Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband”
Our Marriage was no Fairy-tale – even from the beginning. After nearly a decade we were at the end of our rope. There was no love left. He seemed to have given up. I had no idea how to fix things. And God began to put that word in my face every time I turned around.
“But if I show him respect – that he hasn’t earned – it will be like giving my permission to him never growing up and being a man” I argued with God.
“If I respect him -when he doesn’t do any of the things You said he should be doing as a husband – he’ll never do them. He’ll walk all over me.” I pleaded with God.
Surely God saw the man I married. He had to know what he was doing, how he spoke to me, how he didn’t want to be a good husband, seemed to be content to be a 3rd child in the house… Can you relate?
How do you stop being afraid of Respect in a Christian Marriage?
Have you ever tried to argue your point with the God of the Universe? Seems pointless, but I felt I had a valid case… until God laid me bare to the soul. He asked me 2 very intense questions that changed everything in the argument. If you are struggling to respect your husband – knowing God said to do it – I want you to ask yourself these questions as well.
1. Have you really allowed God ALL authority in your life?
If I’ve given God all authority in my life – I will do what He asks. Period. No second guessing. Not arguing about why He is wrong or my situation is the exception.
This is all about Trusting in the Lord with all my heart and not Leaning on my own understanding.
God reminded me of all the times He had been faithful in the past. Has God been faithful in your past? What are the things God has done when there seemed to be no way? I bet you have a Big God story (I’d love to hear it btw- reach out and share it anytime!).
God has been big in my life. He has never left me or let me fall too far. I know I can trust Him. Why was I afraid to Respect my Husband? If God said to do it – I can trust that He will protect me and keep me from being made a fool of. Can’t I? Can you?
2. Are you still holding onto this area of anger – refusing to forgive?
Have you ever been caught red-handed? Like hands in the cookie jar caught? He was absolutely right. I was not forgiving my husband for all the things… you know – all those things I used in my argument with God. I obviously hadn’t forgiven him. It felt like if I forgave him for all his hurtful behavior and lack of behavior – like I was letting him get away with it.
Honestly, this area of Forgiveness is a whole other article. I write about it often – because the Pathway to Forgiveness has led to real Freedom in my life. Check out more about it here.
How do you stop being afraid to Respect your Husband in a Christian Marriage?
Forgive the past and live in a habit of daily forgiveness.
God has us, ladies. We really can do Marriage His way – knowing He will honor our obedience and bless our homes abundantly.
Are you longing for Hope and Joy in your Marriage?
God took me through a journey of re-learning how to live as a wife with a Biblical Worldview. It is a joy for me to teach and mentor locally and I am thrilled to launch this new Online Course.
In this 9 week Course, we will dig into the Bible and find out how to restore our Marriage – rebuilding it to Last a lifetime!
- 10 Self-paced video lessons
- Desires Vs. Preferences
- My Mouth
- Appreciation & Admiration
- The Leader
- Understanding Men
- My Priorities
- 9 weeks of personal study
- 5 days each week that should take 10-15 minutes
- 45 Days of Prayer prompts
I am excited to giveaway 1 spot in the course! Enter Below.
Tiffany is a Jesus Girl with a passion to Encourage and Equip Wives and Moms through Biblical Discipleship.
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Enter the Reclaiming Hope & Joy In Your Marriage ECourse!