Recently, one of my girlfriends invited me to join her for coffee and some "girl time". Since she hadn't been to our new house, I invited her to come over. And as soon as she accepted I got excited and began planning for our time together. I tidied up, making sure everything was in its place and presentable. And rather than serve her the simple cup of coffee or tea we agreed upon, I decided that a small continental breakfast would be more suitable for my special guest. Ultimately, I wanted to make sure she was comfortable and felt welcomed into our home, even if it was just for a little while.
As the time grew closer for her arrival, the more excited I became. At one point, I sat on our stairs in anticipation of her arrival. When she finally rang the doorbell, I don't think it had finished its full chime before I swung open the door and greeted her with a big hug. I truly looked forward to spending time with her.
After she left, I began to clear the dishes from the table and my somehow my mind wandered back to the days when LT and I were dating. Just as I'd done today, I would spend the whole day in anticipation of seeing him. I'd spend lots of time and effort making sure my house and I were presentable for his arrival. And although I didn't want to seem too eager when he rang the doorbell, I didn't let him wait very long before opening the door and welcoming him. And seeing the smile on his face would confirm that he was just as excited to see me.
Fast forward almost 11 years later...
As a stay at home wife and mother, there are days when I am so consumed with my everyday tasks, responsibilities and writing assignments that I feel blessed and accomplished when I don't look like "who shot John and why?". And if I'm being completely transparent, there are days when I hear LT's keys jingle in the door when he arrives home and I'll yell a passive greeting from my upstairs office, hoping it lands on his ears because I don't want to stop whatever it is that I am working on to greet him properly. On the contrary, there are also days when he can't get in the door quick enough and I am there greeting him with open arms and a big kiss. But it all depends on what I am focused on or doing at the moment.
But isn't this how it goes in most marriages? Some days you feel "it" and some days you don't?
Yes. It happens often, but it doesn't have to be the norm!
One of the things that I love about being married to LT is that he knows me. The years we spent cultivating our friendship before marriage means I don't have to pretend to be something I'm not because he's seen all parts of me - even my flaws. But on the contrast, he's also seen me at my best.
Now, don't get it twisted. Because of our desire to please God over everything, our marriage is AMAZING. I thank God for His favor because our marriage is a testament of God's grace and love. However, God wants all of His children to live the abundant life, which means there is always room for growth and improvement.
I wish this WHOAment was just a reminder for us wives to greet our husbands properly when he arrives so that he knows he is wanted and that we look forward to him being home. But that's only a snippet.
When I started thinking about how I didn't have to think twice about preparing for my friend and the effort I put into making her feel welcomed into my home, it made me think long and hard about why it not as easy for me to do the same with my husband. The answer stung a little, but it checked me at the same time:
Familiarity and lack of reverence and respect.
Say what, Holy Spirit?
A definition of familiarity is "relaxed friendliness or intimacy between people." That same intimacy and relaxed friendliness is the reason only you can call your spouse "Boo" or "Babe" and they answer. But if I heard someone else refer to MY spouse as those nicknames, I would (at a minimum) be very upset and question why they felt so familiar that they could address him as such. (Don't try me... I'm just saying.)
God's instructions to wives is to reverence our husband. Reverence means that I should hold my husband in high regards and remain in awe of him because he is my physical representation of God. Through my faith in God's Word, this needs to always stay at the forefront of my mind -- no matter what I am feeling or when I am not feeling it. Period. I can't allow the fact that I "know" my husband to overshadow who he is in my life. I must respect him as my man of God. I must be intentional about seeing him the way God sees him, no matter what my physical senses try to make me see. And when I don't, I am out acting outside of God's way.
A biblical example of this is Sarah calling Abraham "lord", or the one who directs. (Genesis 18:12). Even while she laughed at the news that she would have a son in her old age, she still had the Godly sense to reverence him. I'm sure there were many days when Abraham may not have acted as such, but she honored him anyways. Above all, I'm sure calling him "lord" was her way of keeping herself in check as she recognized his position.
Men and women were created differently. We think differently. Women are lovers by nature and it is natural for men to give out respect. So it may seem uncomfortable for wives to consistently show respect to our husbands. Some even see it as a sign of weakness, as if they lose by doing this. It may seem "soft" for a man to show love to his wife. But God designed it that way in our marriage and I will not argue with Him because he definitely knows best!
The main purpose of this platform is to inspire us to live God's best life -- in all areas of our lives. Valentine's Day is right around the corner and what better way to celebrate our covenant than doing what we can to improve our marriage? God will honor our obedience and we will reap the benefits.
Here are some practical ways to honor and reverence our husbands:
I've learned the key to success is making Godly choices, which means that our thriving in our marriages depends on us making Godly choices. God told us to respect our husbands and it is up to us to choose to do this, or not.
So wives, let's make a conscious choice to follow God's Word and reverence our husbands! Let's start today and do it consistently for the next 30 days. Are you in?
(Remember, faith doesn't go by what we see, how we feel or the circumstances around us. Faith acts on God's Word. So during this time, even on the days when you don't feel like it, do it anyways. Let's elevate to the next level.)
If you enjoyed reading this WHOAment, you may also like "From Frump to Fabulous"
I enjoy hearing from you. So, let's chat!
*Are you up for the Wedded Challenge? Remember to check in and share your victories with me!
*Wives, what are you committing to do for the next 30 days to reverence your husband?
*Husbands, what are you committing to do for the next 30 days to show love to your wife?
*How do you physically greet your spouse when they arrive? (Kiss? Hug? "Hello"?)
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