Respecting your husband is a concept that eluded me for many years at the beginning of our marriage. I always felt that it would be so much easier if the command given in Ephesians had been for wives to “love” their husbands.
Loving him I could do quite easily, while respect seemed like such a vague concept that I struggled to grasp and understand, let alone put into practice.
Being respectful to your husband should become a habit, and as such it takes time and effort to perfect. I would like to offer you a simple list of ABCs to help you on your journey.
4 Ways to Cultivate a Habit of Respecting Your Husband
1. Accept His Words As Wisdom
When your husband shares his opinion, accept his words as wisdom, even if his logic does leave something to be desired. Not many actions speak disrespect louder to a man than shooting down his ideas and thoughts in cold blood.
Coupled with refraining from putting him down when he does come out with strange thoughts, you can make “respect statements.” When your husband makes a notable, wise statement, validate him by saying, “Oh wow, honey. That is such a wise way to view the situation!” or “I never thought about that! What would I do without you?!”
2. Believe the Best
We wives can be rather oversensitive and even suspicious at times. You may be surprised at how often your husband actually means well when he makes a suggestion or takes initiative, even when it may come out all wrong.
As you know, men and women are remarkably different. The man that God has granted you may not be as eloquent a speaker or as thoughtful in the same areas you are. This gives you the perfect opportunity to implement 1 Corinthians 13 – the “Love” chapter!
Embedded within this scripture passage is, “Love believes all things.” In other words, love believes the best about another person.
If, for example, your husband gives you a hand mixer for your anniversary, rather than a gorgeous pendant which you would have preferred, believe that he never meant to give you the message that you perpetually belong in the kitchen baking him cakes! He was thinking of what may be most practical to make your life easier – which is actually a very lovely gesture.
Believe the best each and every time your hubby says something to you, and especially when you may be tempted to get your feelings hurt. This will eliminate many unnecessary opportunities to harbor unforgiveness and bitterness, and will free you both up to enjoy a far more peaceful marriage.
3. Care for His Needs
Not many women realize how respected it makes a man feel when we care for his basic needs. Whether you are cooking a meal for your man, packing him a lunch box for his workday, caring for the children, or keeping the pantry stocked with food, these all speak volumes to your husband.
In his mind you are respecting him by keeping his life running smoothly while he does what God has ordained for him to do.
You may not feel as though he appreciates all you do, or he may not even realize how much you do, but this is what I call the “behind-the-scenes respect tactic.” Essentially, only God sees all that you do, and this is where you get those extra heavenly crowns for respecting your husband without realizing it.
4. Defend Him Before Others
Not much speaks greater respect to your man than when you defend him and his principles before others. The opportunity will most likely present itself in your life most commonly with your children.
When one of the children speaks disrespectfully to your husband, a great way to prove your standard of respect is to jump in and lovingly explain that his father is a man worthy of much honor in the home, and such speech will not be tolerated.
Or when a child disobeys her father, make sure to defend him, explaining that her dad is the head of the home and needs to be respected and obeyed. Of course this will be a more natural way of life to emulate if you, as their mother, exemplify a lifestyle of respecting your husband. That is one of the best incentives I have found for pulling up my socks in this “respect” arena!
Respecting your husband, whether you believe he is worthy of it or not, is not a luxury or an option. It is a wise mandate from the Creator who knows what is best for you as a couple, and designed the instruction to bring Him greatest Glory!
Tehila is an Israeli, God-loving, husband-serving, child-nurturing mom of four sweet little ones (and one on the way!) whom she homeschools. She resides in beautiful New Zealand from where she welcomes you to her blog at http://www.womenabiding.com
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