Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.
Learning to Love
Years ago, a Christian woman in her mid-60s said to me, “Now that my husband is retired, he is home all the time, and it’s really putting a strain on our marriage.” I knew what she meant. She wasn’t saying she didn’t like being with her husband or that her marriage was falling apart. But instead, over the years, when they each had full-time jobs, they would see each other only in the evenings. A pattern had developed. They had learned how to be loving and patient with each other for the few hours they were together each evening. But now, that pattern had been disrupted. They had to intentionally work at being loving to one another—not just in the evenings, but in the mornings and afternoons as well.
With more and more people working from home, husbands and wives are spending much more time together than before. As a result, couples of all ages are coping with new patterns. And that can be challenging to relationships.
Here are a couple of things to consider: If it’s a little bit more difficult for us to be surrounded by family members more often than we were accustomed to, understand it’s probably just as difficult and straining for them too. Additionally, just because it might be a strain doesn’t mean it’s a negative thing. It means we have a new pattern that may need some adjustment. Spending extra time together means we will need to be extra intentional with our love and patience. We will want to work extra hard to take words and actions in the kindest possible way.
And if you want a little extra motivation, look to Jesus, who loved the church and gave himself up for her. When we see of how patient Jesus is with us, we are moved to be more patient with others. When we see how often and how freely Jesus forgives us; that helps us to forgive one another. When we see how Jesus makes sacrifices for us and serves us, that makes us want to serve too—not just in the evenings, but in the mornings and afternoons as well.
Dear Jesus, help me to love and serve others as you have loved and served me. Amen.