Men, let’s be honest with ourselves: If we became women, would we want to marry ourselves? I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t say a big “YES” to myself, but my wife Cecilia did. And I am so grateful to her for it. Are you grateful that your wife said “yes” to you?
I know that I’m imperfect. In fact I do have a lot of flaws that I hate to admit. But my wife knows them all and she loves me anyway. Your wife who said “yes” to you and made her vows to you before God loves you, thank her for what she’s done.
Best of all, guys, we must realise that out of all the men our wives could’ve possibly chosen, they chose us. It’s such an honour.
Have you ever felt unappreciated for opening the door or doing a random chore at work? Have you ever felt that your friend or sibling didn’t thank you for the favor you did for them?
If you have, then you probably know how your wife feels when you don’t thank her for washing your laundry, cleaning up after you, taking care of the kids full time, preparing your breakfast, and praying for you before giving you that warm blanket at night when you sleep. Your wife deserves your gratitude for what she does for you . I always imagine if i got the best deal in a wife, and when i do the math, i know for a FACT, that i got the BEST EVER DEAL and i am grateful to God.
James 3:2 lays out the human condition as clearly and as succinctly as anyone can: “We all stumble in many ways.” Think about the impact of the words “all” and “many.” What James is telling us is that if you were to divorce your spouse, interview two hundred “replacement” candidates, put them through a battery of psychological tests, have follow-up interviews conducted by your closest friends, and family, spent three years dating the most compatible ones, and then spent another forty days praying and fasting about which one to choose, you’d still end up with a spouse who disappoints you, hurts you, frustrates you, and stumbles in many ways.
Once I accept that my spouse will regularly stumble, JUST LIKE ME, the point of evaluation changes dramatically. Some people compare to their mates to perfection. Well, there was only one perfect person who ever walked this earth, and he never got married. When I embrace the biblical truth that every spouse stumbles in many ways, when my wife acts up, I realize she’s acting normally. This means that, instead of focusing on the occasional disappointment, I can be grateful for the positive acts of love: every spouse stumbles, but not every spouse acts so kindly. Every spouse stumbles, but not every spouse would put up with me for 9 years! By accepting the negative as inevitable, I’m able to appreciate and showcase the positive evidences of God’s grace.
Disappointment and a lack of respect are often birthed out of unrealistic expectations. It’s not fair to compare your marriage to something you’ve seen in a movie or read about in a novel—that marriage isn’t real. And even if you see a marriage at church OR ON SOCIAL MEDIA, you don’t know what’s really going on during less public moments. In my home language we say “Chakafukidza Dzimba Matenga” which means you can never know the family secrets inside someones home.
I regularly intentionally speak to married couples, and I haven’t found a single one that has told me their marriage has been “easy.” Rewarding? Yes. Soul-forming? Absolutely. But easy? Never.
This understanding gives me great appreciation for my spouse, who is willing to engage in a difficult task with me. Even though it can be really hard, my wife has hung in there with me; we confess to each other, we forgive each other (even though its not always easy), and sometimes we have to learn to forget what each other did. What an amazing thing that another human being would do this with me instead of running away.
Every one of us is married or will be married to an imperfect spouse. We confront different trials, different temptations, and different struggles—but each one of us faces the same reality: living as imperfect people, in an imperfect world, with an imperfect spouse. Learning to love, appreciate, and to be thankful for that imperfect spouse is one of the most soul-transforming things you can do. It’s not an easy journey, but it’s a profitable one, and I urge you to remain committed to it today.
Ephesians 5:28 tells us, “He who loves his wife loves himself.” If we love ourselves, let’s all learn to put our own comforts and pleasures aside to prioritise that of our wives. My wife deserves my love, and your wife deserves yours.
Will Frank – Arise Marriage Ministry