|6 years ago :: Jul 29, 2009 - 7:04PM #1|
1. Thou shalt love thy wife and commit thyself to her for a lifetime of oneness in marriage - divine and indivisible. Thou shalt make of thy marriage an exclusive relationsihp so that thy wife shall never have occasion to doubt thy love nor occasion for jealousy or lack of trust. As the scriptures say, "Husbands love your wives just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her." (Ephesians 5:25); "What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder" (Mark 10:9); "Cleave unto thy wife" (Genesis 2:24).
2. Thou shalt seek to understand thy wife. Thou shalt not be able to understand her, but thou shalt make a lifetime effort to do so. As the scriptures say, "Husbands, dwell with your wives according to knowledge" (1 Peter 3:7) [and I add: according to knowledge means you need to study her to see what makes her happy, what makes her sad, what makes her cry, etc, and do things to accommodate her.]
3. Thou shalt talk to thy wife when thou comest home from thy work, when thou sittest in thine house, when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. Thou shalt at times turn off the television to assure thy wife she is more cherished than your favourite program, for communication is an expression of love. As the scriptures say, "Live a life of love" (Ephesians 5:2).
4. Thou shalt not talk down to thy wife nor use sarcasm or ridicule. Thou shalt not belittle her, for her sense of self woth is much dependent on your appreciation and encouragement of her. As the scriptures say, "Love is kind" (1 Corinthians 13:4) and again, "Do everything without complaining or arguing" (Philippians 2:14), and again, "in honour prefer one another" (Romans 12:10).
5. Thou shalt listen to thy wife, asking for her advice and opinions, and recognizing her mental abilities and talents, as Abraham asked and followed Sarah's advice. As the scriptures say, "Love is not proud or rude" (1 Corinthians 13:4-5).
6. Thou shalt not lord it over thy wife, recognizing that the two of you are equal before God and that leadership in the home does not mean dictatorship. Neither does it mean being waited on nor having the best piece of chicken. Leadership means moral, financial, and spiritual responsibilities. Headship in the home also means sacrifice and service. As the scriptures say, "Submit yourselves one to another out of reverence for Christ" (Ephesians 5:21), and "Husbands, do not be harsh with them" (Colossians 3:19). Thou shalt not abdicate thy leadership role because of apathy or indifference, for love cares and bears all things.
7. Thou shalt see that thy wife is thy best friend. The closest of all human relationships is marriage and it should know joyous comradeship, with laughter and good humour. Thou shalt share affection and confidences with thy wife and long to be in her presence. As the scriptures say, "Live joyfully with thy wife whom thou lovest" (Ecclesiastes 9:9).
8. Thou shalt help thy wife in all those ways that sacrificial love would help, giving her of thy time, money, attention, affection (yea, even washing the dishes as needed), remembering that the scriptures say, "Bear ye one another's burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ" (Galatians 6:2).
9. Thou shalt accept thy wife as she is. Thou shalt not expect perfection. Thou shalt forgive her of her mistakes and confess thine own to her, remembering that "love covereth all sins" (Proverbs 10:12). "Forgive each other as God in Christ has forgiven you" (Ephesians 4:32).
10. Thou shalt practice tenderness as the essential emotion, realizing that sex is a gift of God which expresses and enhances love. Sex is giving joy as well as receiving it. Thou shalt consider that nothing can erode the sexual union more than selfishness. Remember the scriptures say, "The husband's body does not belong to im alone, but also to his wife" (1 Corinthians 7:4); "Husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies" (Ephesians 5:28); "As ye would that (she) should do unto you do ye even so unto (her)" (Matthew 7:12).
11. Thou shalt in some way each day show thy wife that "I need you," that "I appreciate you," and that "I want to help you." So shalt thy marriage become a strong and blest tie that binds two hearts in Christian love.
12. And should thy marriage become trying and seemingly an endurance contest, thou shalt not give up. Thou shalt "bear all things, believe all things, hope all things, endure all things" (1 Corinthians 13:7). Thou shalt turst thy God who is love and who is the God of the resurrection to rekindle and renew thy love. Thou shalt treat thy wife as thou didst when love was new. And having done all, thou shalt "suffer long" and "cast thy burdens on the Lord" knowing that he careth for thee and thy mate (1 Peter 5:7).