Going First

Guys, I wanted to get back to you regarding the experiment in my marriage. I shared with you weeks ago that I really felt like the Lord was telling me to love my wife in the Rom. 5:8 way of “whether I felt like she deserved it or not”. Or to put it another way, to “go first”. I began by asking my wife what to her would feel like loving behavior from me.

She responded that helping her with chores around the house, and being more proactive as I saw needs arise (like unloading the dishwasher, taking out the trash, occassionally vacuuming the floor, helping to bring in the groceries when she arrived home from the store). So I began doing these as best I could. The hard part being to continue to do them when I felt like I’d been wronged, or when I felt like she wasn’t doing her best to meet my needs. The results?

After a couple of weeks she commented that she could tell that I was really trying to serve her. Fast forward a couple more weeks and she tells me as I’m leaving on a business trip, “I’m really going to miss you, and I’ve not felt that in a long time”. She has also begun making obvious efforts of her own to meet my needs. This would make for a great round table discussion. I’d love to share a cold beverage with you all and do just that. But in your absence, I’ll confess that I’ve not served my wife in a Rom 5:8 kind of way because I thought it made me a weak man, a wimp, and a guy she wouldn’t respect. I’ve found those to be lies every one. And I’ve found that in large part they created a log jam in my relationship with my wife.

There’s a lot more that could be said about this, but I’m trying to share the nugget of truth here. As men we are called to love our women as Christ loved the church. In my experience that means going first, and loving her in ways that say “I love you” to her (this is huge), even when she doesn’t deserve it. That’s exactly what Jesus does for us.