We began the Revive our Marriage series with prayer, then last week we worked on our attitude. This week we are moving on to Challenge Number 3!
Titus 2:3,4 says that older women are to teach younger women to love their husbands. The word love in this passage is the greek word “Phileo” which is a friendship sort of love. I would assume that most of us feel like we know how to be a good friend to our husbands – so why would God tell us to have an older woman teach us this? Because it is something that we need to relearn after marriage.
You see during those dating days – we were all good friends to our future husband. We were willing to sit through boring sporting events or television shows – simply because they wanted us to be along side them as they enjoyed it.
Then we got married and had kids – and we have way more “important” things to do like laundry and dishes. As a result – we don’t sit down to watch the ball game or follow our husband out to the garage while he works on the car just to be along side him while he works.
This is a grave danger because friendship to a husband looks different than friendship to a woman. God wired women to enjoy face to face friendship. We like to sit across the table from our friends and talk and connect. But God wired men to enjoy sitting shoulder to shoulder with their friends.
Dr. Emerson Eggerich explains this in his book Love and Respect:
“I have counseled many couples who have not had a good heart-to-heart exchange for decades. What can a wife do? Try seeing his need for shoulder-to-shoulder friendship. If he has closed you off and gone quiet, the way to draw him out is by simply being with him during some activity. Don’t talk; just be with him. Do this over a 12-week period and watch what happens. I can almost guarantee he’ll start talking. Will he necessarily look at you face to face? Probably not. Will he talk for a long time at first? Probably not. Will YOU be energized by this? Probably not. Will HE be energized by this? YES!
Trust me. Your husband has a need you do not have, and that need is met in a way that feels unnatural to you. But as you are just being with him, shoulder to shoulder, his fondness for you will grow inexplicably. It really doesn’t make a lot of sense, but the simple truth is he just needs you to be there.”
Wow – does that fact baffle you? I read Love and Respect many years ago and it was so eye opening for me to realize the truth of this shoulder-to-shoulder friendship that my husband needs.
So let’s give it a whirl!
**Chime In: What activity will you choose to do shoulder-to-shoulder with your husband this week? Share it in the comments section.
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