"Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;"
Eph 5:25

Saturday, October 12, 2013

My "AHA" Moment

I was a typical husband in many ways.  I wanted my wife to be happy and I wanted our children to be pleasant, obedient, and well adjusted.  I thought I was doing everything right.  I was a caring, generous person who made sacrifices for my wife so she would be happy.  I hardly ever said "no" to her, and I almost never asked anything of her.  Life was good.


Then I had a life altering "a-ha" moment one day on my drive home.  I was thinking and praying for direction.  I wanted to know where my marriage was going and where God wanted me to lead us.

I kept coming back to the same answer.  Intimacy.

God wants my wife and me to experience intimacy.  He wants us to know each other completely, inside and out.  He doesn't want us to hold anything back from one another.  He wants us to enjoy the pleasure and safety of being ourselves without the fear of feeling rejected or belittled.  He wants us to be naked without shame literally and otherwise.  I should be able to share everything with my wife and not think twice about it.

Up to that point I had not been very open with my wife.  I thought I was living with her in an understanding way (1 Peter 3:7), but what I didn't realize was that my lack of leadership had removed the shield of protection from our relationship.  I thought that I was supposed to ignore my needs and desires in order to do what was necessary to make her happy at all costs.  I believed that my role as a husband was to please my wife and nothing else.

What I didn't realize was that by ignoring so many of my own needs I was endangering my marriage.  I was opening myself up to temptation by not mentioning some of the things that were very important to me.

I should have conveyed my vision for our marriage and established myself as the head of our home in the very beginning.  I should have insisted of certain things that would ensure that we were heading down the path of true marital intimacy, real oneness (not just sex). I should have figured out that by owning the headship in our relationship and leading my wife through the Holy Spirit I would be insulating us from harm by removing much of the temptation most husbands experience.

I needed to change.  I needed to handle things differently.  I had to learn to think and act in a genuine manner, not going along to get along, especially when it interfered with the vision and direction God gave me for our marriage.

That's when I began to slowly and gently lead our family in a different direction.  I began to assert my needs and wants as important items to help us experience the one-flesh relationship God wants for us.

It's a long, slow process.  We are making progress.  Granted, there are some areas in which we will struggle more than others, and there are a few things that I let slide for so long that I might not regain those areas of leadership.  These are the things Satan will use to tempt me; because I did not insist on these thing when we were establishing our marriage in the beginning, I must be vigilant to resist these specific temptations, likely for the rest of my life on Earth.

I pray that husbands everywhere understand that to live with their wives means not only pleasing them, but also protecting their marriages from harm.  Sometimes this means hubbies need to be assertive when it comes to things they need in order to keep them from temptation and ultimately protect their marriages.

Be strong, my brothers!

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:21) 


3 comments:

  1. It took me a long time to learn this lesson as well. Still learning more about how to implement it.

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    Replies
    1. Implementing is the hard part for me as well. At my core I'm an introvert, so it's difficult enough for me to put my opinions out there let alone to ask for what I need. But I'm making baby steps in the right direction.

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  2. Love this, Thomas! Thank you for sharing!

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