*Five Minute Friday is an initiative set up by Lisa-Jo Baker over at Surprised by Motherhood. It has now been taken over by Kate over at Heading Home. The basic premise is to take the word Kate gives and write, non-stop for 5 minutes. Then you stop and post. Read more about it here. This October, I am taking part in a series based on this called “31 Days of Five Minute Free Writes”, in which we commit to writing from the prompt as usual, but everyday rather than just on a Friday. Read more here.
“To love, honour and obey.”
In our modern-day thinking, I know many of us struggle to read past “love” when it comes to this phrase in relation to marriage. “Obey” can bring out an actual shudder in some, although that is a topic for another day.
No, it is “honour” I have been thinking about today.
I believe that these three words go hand-in-hand with each other in marriage, as well as in faith. Because to truly love means to go beyond mere feelings, and to respect and sacrifice – to show our love through honouring and obeying, even when we don’t feel like it!
I think respect is a true foundation of marriage, particularly a woman’s respect for her husband. It is not that men’s respect for their wives is unimportant – on the contrary, it is crucial – but I think that it is a word that many men crave as husbands, that they long to hear as much as the words “I love you.”
“I respect you, I am proud of you, I honour you.” Our husbands need to hear this. Often.
In a world that is highly competitive, particularly for men, it can feel to many that they are failing to keep up, that they may be “found out” as failures at work or at home. And it doesn’t help that an overemphasis on gossip and complaints (under the guise of “girl talk”) among us wives can add to insecurities.
I believe that respect on our part is essential, and not just directly with our husbands. The way we talk about them with others is important, too. Do we meet with friends and have a gossip session in which we talk about what our husbands did wrong this time? Or do we do what we should do, what they truly deserve, and praise them for who they are, what they do for us, how they bless us?
Because I am in awe of how much they do. I don’t know how my husband manages to work so hard to provide for our family, then comes home and still manages to muster up the energy to take our daughter so that I can have a break. How at the weekend, when he finally gets his chance to rest, he cleans and tidies what I didn’t have the energy to do during the week.
Yes, our husbands are not perfect. But neither are we. We all struggle in our relationships – no one said it would be easy to make two lives one.
But we should recognise the blessings in our marriages, and all that our partners do for us. Because it is wonderful. And it is worthy of honouring.