I feel so strongly about this subject and have posted before about celebrating your husband and celebrating wives, and this devotion fits with both of my previous posts. Today's devotion by Renee Swope talks about respect and submission - which will not cause you to lose your identity in your marriage. I think/know that so many wives will not have anything to do with the "S" word because they feel like their husband will treat them like a doormat, or that they will lose their identity, or even that they may be taken advantage of or appear weak, but that is so untrue! And if your husband does take advantage of you or will sometimes treat you like a doormat, you need to remember that God commands us to love one another at all times. We are to forgive at all times. Wives, this is such a hard thing to do. I have trouble doing this. My friends have trouble doing this. But do not give up! The more you "love" your husband, the more he will respond in a positive manner (more on this later in the post). Someone once shared a verse with me that changed my thinking forever about marriage and how I treat my husband. It's Philippians 2:3-4 (NIV):
3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of others.It really made me think about my husband, his needs, and how being a wife that shows her husband respect will win his heart for God. Here are some suggestions from the P31 devotion to help you show your husband respect and submit to him:
• Ask God to show you ways to respect your husband. He will show you things to do or say - no matter how large or small, easy or difficult!
• Say “I’m sorry” and mean it when you dishonor him.
• Say “I forgive you” and mean it when he dishonors or hurts you.
• Let him overhear you telling someone one thing you appreciate about him.
• Praise him when his decisions turn out well and encourage him when they don’t.
• Tell your husband one thing you are thankful for – about his character, his work ethic, his provision, his humor or something he adds to your family.
* Some of these ideas are from What A Husband Needs from His Wife © 2006 by Melanie Chitwood.
So, what do you value and respect about your husband? How often do you criticize or encourage him? Take the time to write a list of of these things and maybe ask him to do the same for you. We have so many things that we are thankful for and we don't hesitate to share it with others - let your husband be at the top of that list this Thanksgiving.