By the grace of God we mark the twentieth anniversary of our marriage later this month. The memory of the day we said ‘I do’ on the sunny summer afternoon in North London, UK remains fresh in our minds. We do not take lightly the milestone we have attained considering that the statistics for marriage survival in the UK are not very pretty. According to statistics published in 2012, 42% of marriages in England & Wales end in divorce and 34% of marriages are expected to end in divorce by the 20th wedding anniversary.
Sadly, being in a Christian marriage does not guarantee that ones marriage will stay the course and not end up in divorce. Looking back over the years at our marriage we have been blessed beyond measure in so many areas, but there have also been instances where difficult situations could have gone from bad to worse giving that feeling of despondency which have led many to feel they had no option but to call time on their marriage. We can boldly proclaim that it is the grace of God that has seen us through to this point and we rely on His grace to help us in the days, weeks, months and years ahead.
Of the many lessons we have learnt over the years we believe that unwavering commitment to the union is what will keep you together when you might have several reasons why splitting might seem an attractive option. It is clear that remaining married just to avoid the problems that come with divorce, while a useful leverage point in one’s mind to help maintain your resolve, is not the ultimate goal of your relationship.
Husbands have a pivotal role in keeping their homes intact and happy. While that seems a startlingly obvious truth, that role when neglected can lead to a weakening of the fabric of the relationship, which can frequently result in problems which over time may appear insurmountable.
The truth is that husband and wife work best together to strengthen their marriage and make their home a fortress. There are several factors which can help create a wonderful relationship between husband and wife.
We have used our own experiences to identify 20 tips, one for each year of our marriage 🙂 , which will help husbands to become and remain effective spouses keen to see their marriages not only survive but thrive.
- Love your wife unconditionally.
- Always pray for your wife
- Be full of praise and adoration for who she is
- Always celebrate her achievements and express gratitude for what she does
- Make an effort to appreciate her point of view before giving a response on any matter
- Be patient in all your dealings with your wife
- Strive for peace and the rapid resolution of any conflict. Be quick and earnest in apology
- Commit to spending quality time with your wife
- Pay attention to the things that affect your wife.
- Be open and truthful in all your dealings with your wife
- Practice gentleness at all times – being ‘brutally honest’ is not always a sensible approach
- It is more important to get in a kind, loving word than the ‘last word’ in any exchange
- Do not take to heart anything said by your wife in frustration or in the heat of the moment
- Talk your wife in a manner in which she feels respected and not demeaned
- Have your wife’s well being at the top of your priority list. Commit continually to meeting her needs
- Desire intimacy and do your utmost to create an atmosphere for spiritual and physical closeness
- Let your wife know that she is more important than other important things in your life
- Do not emphasise or magnify your wife’s shortcomings or any errors but prayerfully commit to being there for her.
- Commit daily to being the spiritual head of your home and be an example to your wife in all things – faith, character, speech and attitude
- Be available for your wife in all things and be sure to let her see your commitment to her, your children and your home
With this non-exhaustive list of tips part of your code of conduct you will be well on your way to being the husband that your wife needs and desires.
The Spirit of the Lord in the life of a man will allow every committed husband to become the best companion, partner, lover, friend, confidante, support, helper, breadwinner and all round hero to his wife which will help create marital bliss.
We hope to expand on these attitudes and share additional insights via subsequent posts for the benefit of both husband and wife as we seek to encourage you to have the best marriage possible.