As women, we are expected to nurture those around us. We take a house and make it a home. We take food and make it a meal. We support our husbands and remind them that they are strong and worthy. However, now more than ever, we have so many other responsibilities. Many of us have a career, kids to raise, sports, extracurricular activities, and not to mention setting aside time for self-care.
One vital piece of the puzzle for a successful marriage is not to leave your husband with the leftovers. What do I mean by leftovers? Leftovers refer to the effort and energy you have remaining after your daily obligations are taken care of. If you’re like me, you have little left to give at the end of the day. Offering this limited amount of energy can imply that we are providing our husbands with a consolation prize for being married to us. Your marriage should come second only to your relationship with God. Below are tips on how to make your husband a priority and improve your marriage.
Encourage and Support your Husband
This next Biblical mandate is incredibly important yet incredibly challenging for most of us women. At least the following verse has been challenging for me; Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord (Ephesians 5:22). To be clear there are exceptions to submitting to your husband. For example, this verse does NOT say you should be his slave or to submit to a controlling abuser, someone who is cheating, or someone who is leading you and your family to sin. For most of us, it does mean we need to make submission an important habit that we remember. And in healthy marriages the husband will not TELL you to submit. He will invite you to trust him and follow his lead. He will also honor where you are stronger and defer to your wisdom or talent in areas that you are stronger in. For most men this is a growth opportunity they need to be taught and then need helping moving towards.
Thankfully, the responsibility to submit and follow God does not rest on us alone. Men are also held accountable as the Bible instructs husbands to Love your wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her (Ephesians 5:25). This may seem old-fashioned, and the current culture suggests an “All about me” approach, but if you want to have a phenomenal marriage, you need to keep these virtues close to your heart. And yes, that means a husband is called to love and lead sacrificially for his wife and family. He is called to lay down his life for his wife in love as Christ laid his life down for us.
How to start. Be your husband’s biggest cheerleader! Support him and provide him with consistent encouragement. The more you build him up, the more likely he will be to meet your needs and the needs of your kids.
Pray for your Husband
One of the most selfless and powerful things you can do for your husband is to pray for him. Prayer opens doors that no man can shut! Keep your husband close to your heart and ask God to bless him in every way possible. It is always wise to seek God’s counsel in relational situations that you are struggling with, why should your marriage be the exception? The Bible reminds us that “…a cord of three strands is not easily broken” Ecclesiastes 4:12. This means that the closer both you and your spouse grow to God, the closer you are to one another.
Attack the Problem, not your Husband!
It can be tempting to make rude comments when others make mistakes, especially when this person is your spouse. It is common knowledge that men communicate and operate differently than women. I want to remind you of this because I guarantee that you have recently had a fight that could have been solved with the correct approach and mindset. I know how easy it is to come home after a long day and become frustrated when things are not exactly as they should be. If you’re like me, you have probably said something along the lines of “You were home all day, why aren’t the dishes clean?” or “Why can’t you just put your socks in the hamper instead of on the floor?” Nevertheless, what seems like a simple comment to women can cut deep and send men into a shame spiral. Reframe your mindset from the “who” to the “what. Remember, it’s you and your husband vs. the problem, not you vs. him.
Marriage is the most challenging yet rewarding relationship you can establish in life, and treating it as such will help you get the most out of your relationship. It can be hard to know where to turn when your marriage is struggling. Emotions, habits, and misunderstandings can make it difficult for couples to see relational issues clearly.
At New Vision Counseling and Consulting, we offer a compassionate and transformational approach to help you and your husband create the marriage of your dreams. If you are struggling to find common ground, heal a betrayal, or simply want to improve communication skills in your marriage, we are here to help. Our team of marriage and family therapists have years of experience and have helped thousands of couples work through dysfunctional habits. We provide a compassionate and non-judgemental environment where you and your spouse can feel safe discussing issues that you want to improve. You can start investing in your relationship today by calling (405) 921-7776.