This brief devotional will help any woman who is wondering just what her role in marriage is, especially if her blissful bridal days are long gone and the monotony of a matriarchal life has settled in. Don’t grow stagnant, you are worth the effort it takes to make a great marriage, and you are a wonderful and holy reward to your husband!
“[To husbands] Enjoy life with the woman whom you love all the days of your fleeting life which He has given you under the sun; for this is your reward in life and in your toil in which you have labored under the sun.” Ecclesiastes 9:9
Word to the Wise
Do you ever feel guilty about all of the things your husband has on his plate (not to mention you and your heaping full plate)? Sometimes I really do. I think about all of the things my husband has to be responsible for and I see that most of the time, he is happy doing it. However, sometimes I find myself feeling sorry for him and all of those duties. The man I married all those years ago didn’t have to pay for a home, cars, kids, school books, medical expenses, help with chores, change diapers, and basically spend all of his time serving. The man I am married to now (still the same man here!) does have to do all of that, and about a zillion other things also, and so do I. Instead of feeling sorry for him or myself, lately, for that matter, I am trying to remember that through the hard and easy days both, marriage was made for us to bless and help one another (Genesis 2:18-22).
How can we bless one another when we are spent? Since love is our call as Christians, offering the reward of putting your best foot forward for this hard working husband of yours seems like a good place to start. King Solomon, the wisest man on earth, who wrote the book of Ecclesiastes, validates this sentiment by saying in our passage above, that YOU are your husband’s reward for his hard work. This is really wonderful news. This week, pause before you begin each new discussion or time together, taking care to check a sour attitude and or litany of your latest headaches, bills or homework difficulties. Remember to enjoy the reward you are, and to share it with your husband in this short life you get. You have a teammate to run this race of life with you, and after a long day of hard work, it is your reward to enjoy one another in whatever ways you both desire.
This doesn’t mean you ignore difficulties in your life, but it does mean that you know when to lay the hard matters aside for the day at the Lord’s feet through prayer, and then enter a period of quiet surrender to God’s power in your life, despite the circumstances you worked so hard during the day to handle. I know life is hard, but I am so glad we as women may enjoy getting rest after the long workday as well as to being a godly reward to our hubbies! Next time, you can wink up at God when someone uses the cliche “trophy wife” because you are that and so much more, a prized, beloved eternally valuable reward, versus the fake plastic cultural imagery we have become used to envisioning when we hear that term.
In your family life, exercising your wonderful role has great value also. As much as your children may pretend your marriage does not hold meaning for them, it doesn’t take a family therapist to tell you that this isn’t true at all. Our children love to see their parents in a healthy marriage, and if God wills, we hope one day they will enter into a healthy marriage also. It is especially important then, that we show them the example of marriage in its proper place. Try to show your children a healthy marriage by showing how spouses work together to educate their children and meet their basic needs, but also enjoy their marriage by taking the occasional time out to nurture their marriage through an anniversary dinner or a regular date nights, as well as time spent together after the kids go to bed at night. Your children may grumble, but they are learning the labor and reward of marriage, as well as the inestimable value of finding a spouse who will both love and refresh them after a hard day’s work!
After the children are in bed this week and thereafter (or if your husband works nights, be creative about your couples time) try to think of something you can do that you would both enjoy doing. If you already do this nightly, twist it up a notch with a gourmet snack, a new piece of lingerie, a new game, or anything at all that will add more fun and flavor into your night together. Relax and enjoy one another. The bills, the worries, the headaches, and the daily drama will all be there the next day. By doing this, you share in the labors of love, and decrease the likelihood that your man will be hungry or tempted for attention from anyone else! You go girl!