Ephesians 5:33 says, "And let the wife see that she respects and reverences her husband. (that she notices him, regards him, honors him prefers him, and loves and admires him exceedingly.)
If I did a survey on 100 women and asked them,, "Do you respect your husband?" What do you think the outcome would be? I believe that most women would admit that they do repect their husbands, but would they be able to explain how they are showing their husbands respect? Because we women are very emotional beings, we often wait for our husbands to meet our need for love first before we are willing to give them respect. according to Eph.5:33, this is not the way we should act. We are not to wait. We are to see that we are being respoonsible for our part in the relationship by giving our husband's unconditional respect. When we give them this through actions, we are in essence saying with our heart, our hands, our eyes, and our overall countenance, " I love you!!!" This is what keeps and covers the heart of our husbands. It is not in how we dress to the latest fashion, or the manicures and pedicures we purchase. It is not in highlights in the hair and the cologne that we wear. But love is shown by the honor and esteem we willingly present our husbands with intent and obedience.
Last week I shared the first 3 points of practical ways we can actively show our husbands repect. This week, I am sharing the next three points. If these have been weak areas for you, and we all have weaknesses in these areas, I would encourage you to use these as a prayer list. Go to your secret place and ask the Lord to show you which areas He would like for you to focus on. Circle one or two and allow the Lord to give you grace to be strengthened in those areas by putting them into action. His grace is sufficient.
4. A respectful wife venerates her husband. This means that she intentionally looks upon him with deep respect. We can control and choose our thoughts toward them. When we look upon our husbands, do we crticize his weakness and grumble within our hearts about those traits? Or do we take our thoughts captive (2Cor.10:4-5) and make it a habit to dwell on the good qualities God has given him?
5. As respectful wife esteems her husband. She values him highly. We are usually careful in the way we handle valuable belongings. Do we make his schedule more important than ours? Is what I have to do more important than what he has to do? Am I looking out for my interests or his? Sarah called Abraham Lord, not because she worshipped him above God, but because she recognized He was God's appointed headship in her marriage.
6. A respectful wife defers to her husband. This means to yeild with courtesy. She is cheerful toward him and encourages him without complaining. She does not nag, insist on her having her own way, fights to have the last word, and does not put undue requirements on him. If someone invites her to do something, she checks with him first.
When we make an effort with God's help to show our husbands respect, we are allowing the Holy Spirit to change us first. When we are changed, God then works through us to bring change in the lives of others. Are you feeling a little low on love in your marriage? Then check your respect level. Check back next week for Part 3 in gleaning pracitcal ways to put hands and feet to what God has called us to do in respecting our husbands.