What Your Husband Needs

Years ago there was a television commercial for a certain brand of car wax. In it a woman was getting ready to sell her car, which looked weathered, old, and dull —so much so that most people wouldn’t give it a second look. The woman realized how dull her car looked, so she used this particular brand of car wax on it. Voila! Her car shone like it was brand-new. It looked so good, in fact, that the woman’s affections for it were revived and she decided to keep it.

We and our relationships are a lot like that. When we treat someone as a valued gift and invest ourselves in his or her care, we build up that person’s feelings of self-worth and draw closer to them as well.

When a wife respects, nurtures, and affirms her husband, it deepens her love for him. On the other hand, when we don’t regard something as valuable and neglect it, our feelings for it begin to wane. At the top of any man’s list of needs is respect from his mate; God created men that way. He needs respect as much from his wife as he needs air to breathe.

A man who doesn’t receive respect from his wife is a man who begins to wither on the inside. He’s all right as long as no one is standing on the air hose running to the tank labeled Respect.

That is exactly why God calls wives to respect their husbands (Ephesians 5:33).

Some believe that respect is something we all must earn. But just like love, respect from spouse to spouse must be unconditional. This is what Scripture teaches: “Show proper respect to everyone … not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh” (1 Peter 2:17-18).

I’ve seen numerous instances in which a wife began to believe in her husband and showed him respect. The husband, in turn, began to change-both in his own thinking and beliefs and in how he treated and responded to his wife.

How can a wife show respect for her husband? Here are just a few examples:

• Express faith in his decision and ability.

• Leave him notes (men respond better to the written word) that tell him how much you value who he is as a person (and sometimes for his work).

• If he botches a task at home, don’t sigh, roll your eyes, and mutter at him; instead, thank him for trying.

• Make positive suggestions without demanding an immediate answer. Ask him to reflect on it for a while.

• Listen to his upsets and don’t take his anger personally.

• Let him vent when he needs to.

• Encourage him in areas where he doesn’t feel secure and let him know you stand behind him.

• When he makes a decision you’re not in favor of, listen.

• Talk about his positive strengths in front of the children.

• Praise him at least once a day.

• Discover the uniqueness of his personality and learn to understand him and communicate better with him.

• Accept his maleness and celebrate the differences that come from this.

Ask yourself which of these you did this past month in an effort to show your husband respect. Then ask yourself how you’ll find ways to do these things in the coming month and beyond.

Here’s a good example of a wife showing her husband respect, admiration, and love he needed from her:

One of the pastors I respected greatly was E.V. Hill, who served for many years as pastor of Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles. When E.V. first began in the ministry, he was a hard worker who wanted to provide for his wife, but he was also a young preacher who struggled to make enough money just to pay for the necessities.

Pastor Hill’s wife appreciated his efforts to protect and provide for her, even though some months there wasn’t enough money to pay all the bills. One night, he came home and noticed immediately that the house was dark. When he opened the door, he saw that his wife, Jane, had prepared a candlelight dinner. He loved the idea, but when he went to the bathroom to wash up, he flipped the light switch and nothing happened. Then he went to the bedroom and tried the lights. Again… there was nothing. The entire house was dark.

He went back and asked his wife why the lights didn’t work. Jane began to cry and said, “You work so hard, but it’s rough. I didn’t have enough money to pay the electric bill. I didn’t want you to know about it, so I thought we would just eat by candlelight!”

Dr. Hill described this experience with deep emotion: “My wife could have said, “I never had this happen in the home I was raised in.” But she didn’t berate or blame him. Instead she said, “Somehow we’ll get these lights back on, but tonight let’s eat by candlelight.”

Our calling to love and respect is a calling regardless of what the other person does. It’s sacrificial. It’s in the scriptures. It works!

The above article comes from the book, One Marriage Under God: Building an Everlasting Love, written by H. Norman Wright, published by Multnomah. This is a book that will help you see things from God’s perspective, clarifying the institution of marriage as God originally created it—a beautiful committed, eternal bond. Dr Wright gives insights on: Whether you married the “right” or “wrong” person is entirely up to you… God has a good plan for every marriage … Your marriage needs to be re-created daily… The culture’s alternatives to marriage are destructive; God’s plan is flawless… The benefits of marriage are a carefully guarded secret… and “Me” or “We?”

— AND —

To help you figure out how to show respect to your husband, Jonathan wrote:

67 Ways to Make Him Feel Super Respected

— ALSO —

Yes, we realize that women need respect, as well. That’s another matter, which is covered in the “For Married Men” topic. But for wives, another article, written by Clayton and Charlie King, posted on the Crosswalk.com web site gives added insight into this topic which you may learn from as you read:

GIVING YOUR SPOUSE RESPECT?

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Comments

46 responses to “What Your Husband Needs

  1. (UNITES STATES) I dont know where to start. I grew up watching my dad abuse my mom, my little brother, and me, so at the age of 18 I married my first husband who was 34. He was sweet and loving when I met him but that all changed after we married. He began to abuse me in all ways possible; he did not allow me to work, we had 2 children together and he did not help at all with them.

    He abused pills and beer and he called me every name in the book. He threatened to kill me, he kicked me and my kids out plenty of times. I always came back because I didn’t think I could do it on my own. But 8 years in after serving him hand and foot, I left and divorced him. A year later I married my husband of today and he has a smoking problem. He is disabled AND he is abusing me also but I love him and feel he needs me so I put up with it but he is telling me now either I bow down to him or he is leaving me.

    I do not know what to do; I dont feel like I should have to bow down to him when he does not respect me; he spits on me and tells me he hates me all the time. I do love him and dont want to lose him but feel like me and my 2 children deserve better….Prayers needed.

  2. Please pray for me. I want to be always faithful to my husband, in my heart and mind. I tend to be weak at times.

  3. What are you supposed to do when your wife (I feel like) rejects her Christian role as the wife and what her responsibilities are. She does work part time. But she doesn’t cook or clean. When she does cook, or provide dinner in any way, our children never eat healthy and it’s usually late at night around 8pm. Her mother comes over twice a week to watch our kids while we work, and has to work her tail off just to “pick up” and do laundry that my wife has let pile up.

    She creates little messes and does not clean up after herself or the kids, which become large messes. Her favorite past time is pretty much just plopping on the couch and watching TV AND being on her phone/social media most of the time. She might have sex with me once a month and she rarely shows me any signs of respect. My appearance, my opinions, even on the things that I am very knowledgable about she will dismiss… Until someone else she knows makes the same point.

    She does activities with the kids here and there, but nothing strenuous. On her days off she won’t even make the kids go outside to play because that would mean she would have to get up and go outside too. And she is very defensive about it all. Anytime I bring these things up she gets defensive and angry. And yes I have tried different ways of approaching the situation, same reaction.

    As far as myself, I feel like super dad. I clean up after myself, I watch the kids while attempting to work from home every Friday. And then I also have them all day Saturday, which gives me one day to do the household man chores like keeping up with the house and yard and trying to fix things. She makes me feel guilty for needing to go and do even these things! Like she needs my help with the kids 24/7???

    I do about 400% more than all of the husbands we are friends with, but it goes unnoticed. I appreciate the things she does do and always point it out and say thank you. On top of all of these complaints, she takes on more extracurricular hobbies that take her outside the home. He “exercise routine” keeps her away from 6:15 pm – 7:45 pm 2 nights a week and then she volunteers to coach cheerleading even though our daughter isn’t even of age yet! So I would cook our kids dinner (when I get home from work at 6 pm, but she never goes to the grocery store)! Our kids live off of frozen chicken nuggets, fish sticks and fast food 75% of the time.

    This is appalling to me, their health is at risk. Our 3 yr old isn’t potty trained yet because she barely works with him. I want my kids to be raised a certain way and she undermines me when I try to teach them discipline in the area of table manners and such, treating me like I’m just being some sort of jerk.

    All of this is becoming too much for me to handle. I’m unhappy in the marriage and she doesn’t care to change. God doesn’t want us to divorce and my happiness isn’t his concern; I believe my holiness is. But if she isn’t respecting me and my wishes and feelings and sex needs why should I stay, other than my kids of course?

  4. I am a Nigerian woman, and I’m married to the most wonderful man on earth, a God-fearing and Holy Ghost filled man, a man whom I could describe as good news any day.

    While growing up, I noticed that a lot of things were going wrong between my parents. My mother was never respectful to my father, and a whole lot more. After seeing all those abnormalities, I decided I was never, ever going to toe my mother’s line. I love my husband so much, and I respect him. I pray to God to help me love and respect my husband even more each day. I love your blog; it’s wonderful. God bless you.

    1. Well said. Your husband is blessed to have you, and it appears that you are blessed to have him. I hope you will continue to encourage others to love and respect each other, as God would have us. May the Lord bless your union abundantly!

  5. Hi, I would like to know how can one honestly respect a man who is never at home for his family and is busy having affairs over and over again. How does one deal with such a situation? How do you affirm such a man?