“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” – Ephesians 5: 25
We talk about love in many ways: romantic love, erotic love, friendship love. The word love used in the biblical description of family calls husbands to choose to love their wives – no matter what. Now, what does this mean, to choose to love?
This kind of love is a commitment to love, no matter the response. It’s always easy to love someone who loves us back. When someone shows us kindness, offers words of encouragement and affirmation, they are easier to love. But, to love someone in the midst of conflict, in disappointment, even when it hurts – well, that is tough love.
In the biblical description of family, the husband is called to be committed to his wife. To be respectful. To love and to forgive, no matter what. In the first century, this was radically counter-cultural. Now, just as the Word of God applied to the first century, the Word of God applies to the 21st century. It is timeless.
Remember, the major responsibility for marriage-working lies with the husband. We’re called to love our wives as Christ loved the church. Christ died for the church. This is a tall order because as sinful, imperfect beings, it is an overwhelming challenge to love our wives as Christ does His church. Think about His death on the cross – for you, for me “while we were still sinners, Christ died.” Talk about loving without condition!
Men, ask God to help you choose love, even when it hurts. Start today. Just as Christ faithfully loves us day in and day out without condition, ask Him to help you begin to love your wife with His love.