Our spouse is a provision from God; to denigrate them is to ultimately reject God’s provision. God gave me my husband to watch over and protect me, and he does. For 20+ years he has gone to work every day, sick or well, and has rarely missed a day. He uses his pay for his family instead of squandering it, as some do. When I am wronged, he is on my side. He tells me every day that he loves me. But sometimes he is angry and lashes out for no reason. He can be sarcastic and unreasonable.
And I, magnifying his faults, sometimes to the point of ignoring his strong points, hold a silent grudge. Sometimes, I vilify his character as flawed and in need of overhaul, while I lie to his face about how I feel about his behavior.
But how do I measure up as a wife? Am I a candidate for sainthood? Hardly. I am prone to lie and do things behind his back, to run down his character to my friends, and do things I know he wouldn’t like in defiance. Do I at least have the good grace to feel embarrassed about my behavior? Not usually. Instead I expect a free pass when my bad behavior is revealed and bitterly resent it when I get what I deserve. I mentally review my good qualities, complaining to God that I am being treated unfairly. That’s a double standard, and undermines my relationship with my husband whom I love very much.
Let us love one another deeply, because love covers a multitude of sins. 1 Peter 4:8
Beyond that, my attitude is an offense to God, a condemnation of His provision for me–a husband who provides for and loves his family, even though he is human and subject to the ways of the flesh just like me. God gives us much more grace than we deserve, yet we refuse to extend it, not only to those who don’t deserve it, like us, but to those we should offer it to unflinchingly, as they do for us.
If you want to have a strong marriage and minimize disputes, simply obey what God commands–honor your spouse. You will never go wrong in God’s eyes by loving unconditionally, giving grace to others as you have been given grace from God, and putting others before yourself. Thank God for His provision for you and remember we are all human and subject to the sins of the flesh. Forgiveness releases both of you and helps build a strong Christian marriage that God can bless.
What can you do today to show your spouse honor, respect and love?