Do this if your marriage struggles
Left hook, right hook, headbutt – boom. It’s over. The guy lays there on the ground, holding his broken nose. Doesn’t look that tough anymore.
A rush of satisfaction flushes through your body. A smile, barely visible, rushes through your face until you manage to suppress it. “How dare you break into my house and threaten my family? You picked the wrong house, bud.”
We’d fight for our families and we’d die for them. Nothing makes a man as determined to wreak havoc as when his family is under attack. Countless movies bank on this instinct and I don’t know a single dude who doesn’t have this animal inside of him.
Why is it then that for all the guys willing to die for their family, fewer are willing to live for them?
Husbands are the leaders in their homes. A great part of our family life is an outworking of our leadership. If we succeed to create an environment of peace and safety in our homes, we will have a woman by our side who is willing to go through hell with us.
If we fail, however, we end up right where we are today in contemporary Western culture. Restless little boys pretending to be men, playing games while refusing to grow up. They take no responsibility for their actions and neither protect nor respect the women they are with.
Colored by culture
One of satan’s biggest victories was to convince the man to blame his wife. Whether we blame her for our fears, failures or for not being “free”, the result is always distance between the couple.
As men, we think that it is “safe” for us to explode at our wives. For some reason, we feel there are no consequences if we treat our wives like garbage. We think that with every stupid thing we say, we can come back later and apologize. It’s a given in our minds so we don’t filter our words too much in the first place.
This, my brother, is a horrible mistake. Even though she will probably forgive you once again, you put down one more brick into what you call a relationship with her. Over time, she will trust you less and be a lot mot defensive and critical of you.
And you’ll wonder what ever happened to the beauty of being in love.
Catching the foxes
We confront in our wives what we are afraid to face ourselves. It’s not their fault our inner balance is out of whack.
Our wives want to know us but it is up to us if we let them into our world. Do we trust them with our fears? Our humiliations, worries, and secrets? Do we reveal to them who we really are?
Because if we don’t, we choose against intimacy and thereby create a chasm between them and us in our hearts. Thus, we feel the need to defend ourselves and the fight is on. We don’t know what they think and so we protect ourselves either by attacking or, as many wives will attest, shutting down.
The only way to get the intimacy we are longing for is to take a risk. Depending on the situation, this might seem unnatural but it’s your responsibility as the leader of your household to take the first step. Remember, we are the ones who are responsible before God.
One fact that is helping me to a lot is to think of myself as a servant to my wife. With this attitude, it is easier for me keep the vulnerability going. It puts my mind in a frame where I am more receptive to her needs and the way she communicates. It shifts away my focus from what I want over to what she needs.
Plus, I want to be the greatest of all (Matthew 20:26).