Last week chapter three was mainly for the men, encouraging and challenging them to man up and be the leader of their home. This week chapter four was for the women, encouraging and challenging us to be respectful and submissive wives.
I went into this week thinking that I was a pretty respectful wife but the Lord revealed my problem areas to me. He made me aware of how I most disrespect my husband. It all begins with my thought life. I disrespect Kyle when I think negatively about him. And when I disrespect him in my thoughts, those thoughts result in actions or words, and I disrespect him outwardly.
The Lord made me acutely aware of my thoughts about Kyle this week. I caught myself thinking negatively about him and even thinking things about him that weren’t true. I noticed that it effected my attitude towards him and caused me to be disrespectful and unkind towards him. I had to stop and take those thoughts captive and make them obedient to Christ by thinking about what was true about Kyle.
For example, I had Grayson on a hip, I was holding a drink in one hand, had my lunch in another hand, my purse on my shoulder, and I was struggling to grab something else. Kyle stood nearby playing a game on his phone and watching the TV that was hanging above my head. Instead of calling Kyle’s attention to my predicament I got frustrated and thought, “Ugh, I have such an unhelpful husband!” The Holy Spirit immediately convicted me because that thought simply wasn’t true. Kyle had stayed home from work two days that week to take care of me while I was sick and look after our son. He is very helpful, more than most husbands I would argue, but in that moment he just wasn’t paying attention.
I began noticing more thoughts like that the rest of the week and how having those thoughts effected my feelings and attitude toward Kyle. When thinking untruths or even truthful negatives about our husbands, when dwelling on their imperfections, we begin to resent them, be annoyed by them, and be unhappy with them. It’s really hard to be loving and respectful towards someone when we have been thinking badly about them.
My challenge this week has been to be aware of how I’m thinking about my husband and to take any bad thoughts captive and make them obedient to Christ. I extend this challenge to you. How do you think about your husband? How does it effect you and your relationship with him? What thoughts should you dwell on that will help you better respect him? Take those untruths and replace them with the truth. Don’t create a version of your husband in your mind that is not worthy of respect and then treat him as if he is that version. Focus on what you love about your husband, what is good about him, and see him as the man that God loves and is sanctifying. Respect him first in your thoughts and then you will respect him with your words and actions. Be a wife who “does him good and not evil all the days of her life” (Proverbs 31:12).