Jeremy and I celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary yesterday. If you were to ask me what one thing I was completely ignorant of when I went into marriage I would have to reply, “I had no idea how to truly respect my husband.”
I grew up with a high regard for my dad and always assumed that my feelings of respect would automatically transfer to my husband some day. And they did, for the most part. But, as I have learned (some times painfully) over the past seven years of marriage, a girl respecting her father and a grown woman respecting her husband are two vastly different things.
It doesn’t help that men get a pretty bad rap in our culture. They are often portrayed (by Hollywood, especially) as bumbling idiots who desperately depend upon the highly capable women in their lives to make things happen. This notion of “needy and desperate men” further complicates the issue of wives respecting their husbands and girls respecting their dads; by and large, women in our culture are programmed to look at men and think, What exactly is there to respect?
The lack of regard for masculinity in our culture is counterproductive at best. It stiffles a man’s natural tendency to lead (since he doesn’t feel trusted) and his desire to protect and cherish the women in his life (since he doesn’t feel needed). The sad byproduct of this twisted thinking is evident in the brazen females who run (or try to run) our society (at the expense of their homes and families), and the effeminate men who are more concerned in finding their “feminine side” than they are in providing a living or making a valuable contribution to society.
God did not design men and women to function in the disfigured roles our society has stamped out for us. When we look to the blueprints of God’s Word, we find a very different pattern- and very different results.
Speaking for myself, I certainly do not want to wake up one day twenty years down the road and realize I goofed up and fell hook-line-and-sinker for a big fat lie. The lie that “it’s all about me” and I don’t need my man and my kids can make it on their own without me… I’m sure you’ve heard it too. Well, I choose not to believe that lie, simply because it defies what I do believe in- the Word of God.
I highly encourage you to check out the following links and listen to these broadcasts, which I dug out of the Focus on the Family archives several weeks ago. If you have a load of laundry to fold, a baby to nurse, a toddler who’s napping, or just a quiet moment in your day, turn your speakers on and listen. The wisdom from these men and women has done much to transform my mind and shape my thoughts into ones the produce the kind of life I’m striving after- one that pleases my Creator.
“Respectful behavior is the key to effectively communicating with your man.”
Kristy Howard is a pastor’s wife, second-generation homeschooling mom of five, and a passionate believer in friendship, coffee, and quiet time! Kristy writes about motherhood, ministry and life at KristysCottage.com.