Wives, do you feel love the way you want? Husbands, do you wonder what your wife really needs to feel loved? Get ready to dive into today’s topic: the importance of love and respect in marriage from a biblical standpoint. We are a few blogs into this new marriage series, so don’t forget to go back and read to those too! Marriage is not easy, 1 year, 10 years, 50 years, it takes work. But when you learn what God says about marriage, His guidelines for it, and you follow those, it gets much easier. Obviously, it’s never easy. But it’s fun, and the work doesn’t seem much like work anymore.
Right now, we are only 5 years in, but the first couple years we went through so much I think we tackled the work of 20 years all in just those 2! The struggles we went through in the beginning, set us on a path to learning what God said about marriage. We knew it shouldn’t be like this. I mean, God created it, and God only creates good things right?! This leads us into today…love and respect.
Listen to the full episode here:
Hey there husband, wife….
Marriage and motherhood go hand in hand. That is why we walk through them both here at Restored Mama. In the chaotic life of marriage and motherhood, overwhelmed moms often find themselves caught in the relentless grip of stress and anxiety. The daily grind of managing a household, nurturing children, and sustaining a marriage can become an overwhelming symphony of responsibilities, leaving us moms feeling depleted and lost.
The weight of unmet expectations, combined with the constant pressure to excel in both roles, fosters a breeding ground for stress and anxiety and often times leads to depression. The struggle is not just external but internal as well. It’s a battle against self-doubt, mom guilt, a yearning for balance, and an innate desire to be the best partner and mother possible, but feeling like you are failing. It’s a journey where the demands of the day drown out the whispers of self-care, and the pursuit of perfection overshadows the pursuit of joy and fulfillment.
My husband and I started our journey on love and respect by reading and going through the Love and Respect book and workbook. I highly recommend you starting with this marriage series from Restored Mama then heading into this book by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs.
Find Love, Joy, and Fulfillment
In the midst of the struggle, overwhelmed moms long for a lifeline, a way to navigate the turbulence and rediscover the fulfillment and purpose God intended for them in their roles. This is where Restored Mama comes in. Find that joy, that fulfillment, and love where God has placed you as you navigate the challenges of marriage and motherhood. We tackle the challenges together through 6 months of group coaching as you work through a self paced course designed just for busy moms like you. This program will help you navigate marriage and motherhood with grace, confidence, and joy!
No better way to start off the new year! Mama, get yourself a Christmas present this year. Invest in yourself so you can become the mom, the wife, the woman you want to be, the one that God has called you to be. Check out the details and I’ll see you there! This is the last month for the special big discount and spots are limited so don’t wait! The next section of group coaching starts the second week of January and you don’t want to miss it!
There is so much to this topic, as I started writing the outline and, I realized I had to break it up into two posts. So today is love, and next will be respect. We are going to break down how a wife feels loved, and a husband feels respected, and how that can transform your marriage.
Love Each Other With Intentionality
With the struggle of daily life, it’s hard to pour into your marriage and your kids too. What we are talking about is not so much easy, but it is simple and doesn’t take extra time. Because let’s face it, time is not something we have much of these days. Learning how to love and respect each other doesn’t take time, but it takes intentionality. Do you think you can do that? Believe me, Johnny and I made it this far in our marriage and we will continue to grow because we made it a point to be intentional in this area, it’s totally worth it.
The pain points experienced by overwhelmed moms are profound and multifaceted, creating a perfect storm of unhappiness and discontent. In the realm of marriage, the struggle to maintain a thriving connection with a spouse becomes a huge ache. Unhappiness lingers like a shadow, casting doubt on the very foundation of the marriage. Simultaneously, the relentless ticking of the clock adds to the pressure, with overwhelmed moms grappling to manage time effectively amidst the chaos. The constant juggling act of meeting the needs of a family, maintaining a home, all the other things we are responsible for, and sustaining a relationship contributes to a profound sense of being stretched too thin.
Daily tasks, once mundane, transform into massive hurdles, leaving us moms feeling perpetually overwhelmed by the sheer weight of our responsibilities. The intersection of these pain points creates a landscape where joy seems elusive, and the pursuit of a balanced and fulfilling life becomes an uphill battle.
Marriage Was Created to Be a Partnership
God created marriage to be a partnership, to create a companionship between each other. But the way He created it, and the way we are living in a marriage don’t align, which is why it is such a struggle. Men were created to desire respect. Women were created to crave love. Yes, we both want love and respect, but the way a man feels loved the most is by getting respect from his wife. A wife wants respect too of course, we all do, but love and being shown love from her husband is the crucial point in a marriage. A husband loving his wife, it’s not all about physical affection, or giving her gifts, or even complimenting her. There is so much more to it. Let’s see what God has to say about it.
True Love is Sacrificial
The significance of love and respect as foundational elements for a thriving marriage is beautifully explained in Ephesians 5:33. “However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” The verse emphasizes the husband’s responsibility to love his wife as he loves himself. This type of love is not merely romantic or emotional but extends to sacrificial and selfless acts of care, understanding, and support. It involves actively seeking the well-being and fulfillment of the other person.
When a husband shows his wife love, true love, the God love, it is selfless. It’s like my husband doing the dishes at the end of the night after I cook dinner. He’s just worked a 10 hour day, helps with the kids and animals, and he is so tired. But no matter how he feels, he sacrificially gives his energy and time to help me. That is sacrificial love. When we were struggling financially, he gave up his free time take on odd jobs to bring in the money we needed. That is sacrificial love.
Sometimes I’ll sit down, forget to bring water to the chair from the kitchen, and he gets up to bring it to me. It’s those tiny, seemingly insignificant acts of love that shows he cares. He doesn’t do it begrudgingly, he doesn’t grumble or complain even if, inside he may want to just sit down and think that I could get my own water. But that’s not what he does. He comes and gives me hugs, pats my butt with a love tap as he walks by, not hoping to get anything out of it when the night comes if you know what I mean. He just does it because he loves me.
How Does a Husband Show Love?
Expressing love in a marriage is crucial for building a strong and lasting connection. I want to give you a few ways a husband can show love to his wife. Feel free to share this with your husband, *wink *wink. But Wives, as you are reading this, remember, some of these will be more important than others, and a lot of these will be good for you to do for your husband as well.
- Active Listening: Take the time to actively listen to your wife. Show genuine interest in what she has to say, and validate her feelings by acknowledging and understanding her perspective. Ok, this you can try to pretend, but think about when your kids pretend to listen, you know they are staring at you and not actually hearing you. Their head is somewhere else. Active listening is not thinking through what you are going to cook for dinner, or what game is on next, or your to-do list. You intently are listening and making a point to register what is being said so you can respond accordingly.
- Acts of Service: Help out with household tasks or responsibilities without being asked. Do simple acts of service, like doing the dishes or taking care of errands. Demonstrate thoughtfulness and contribute to a sense of partnership. Do simple things and that will make a big impact.
Words Make All the Difference
- Words of Affirmation: Use words to affirm and uplift your wife. Compliment her appearance, express appreciation for her efforts, and regularly communicate your love and admiration for her. Whether she put tons of time into herself that day or she just rolled out of bed and is wiping the sleep crust out of her eyes, compliment her. Tell her the house looks great, the dinner was delicious, the kids look cute in their outfits today, great job… Anything she did, small or big, the things you notice, comment on them. Let her know you see it.
- Quality Time: Spend quality time together, whether it’s a date night, or a quiet evening at home. Dedicating time to each other strengthens the emotional connection. When the kids go to bed, this is your time to connect. Even if you are both so tired, you sit and cuddle on the couch and watch a show, this is connection. The key with connecting though, phones are down. Don’t be looking at your phone. Pay attention to each other. This doesn’t have to be a long period of time. If it is quality, it can be a short but you are focused on each other. That short connection time can help to grow a stronger bond whether it’s 5 minutes or 5 hours.
- Surprises and Thoughtful Gestures: Surprise your wife with small, thoughtful gestures that show you care. This could be anything from bringing her favorite snack to planning a surprise weekend getaway or anything in between. It doesn’t even have to be purchasing anything. Most mornings, my husband is up before me. I wake up early, he wakes up even earlier. He sets a coffee cup out for me by the coffee maker. It is a small, very simple gesture. It doesn’t take any extra effort on his part. But it’s that simple thing when I come out to the kitchen in the morning. I know, even when he wakes up in the morning, he’s thinking of me and cares.
Show Your Love Physically and Emotionally
- Physical Affection: Physical touch is a powerful way to express love. Hold hands, hug, kiss, and be attentive to her need for physical closeness. It fosters a sense of intimacy and connection. This shows that you love her no matter what, you think she is beautiful no matter what. It’s not all about her looks, show her you think she is beautiful inside and out, I have been all different sizes in the 5 years we have been married. He never stopped telling me I was beautiful and showing affection. He walks by me and gives me a pat on the butt or a random hug and tells me he loves me. He expects nothing in return, he doesn’t expect that because he was attentive to me today, he’s gonna get some lovin’ that night. He just does it because he wants to, because he knows I like it.
Now, when he shows me the physical affection with no expectation of something in return, it does make me more apt to want to have some special married time more often if you know what I mean. Because I am getting that attention from him, I feel beautiful, special, loved, and I want to show him that in return. Maybe that’s why we keep having kids…we can’t keep our hands off each other because we know how to make each other feel loved!
- Emotional Support: Be a source of emotional support for your wife. Show empathy, offer encouragement during challenging times, and create a safe space for her to express her feelings without judgment. When the wife feels safe, that what she is going to say will be received, that you are there to support her and not just try to fix things. There are times that my husband would try to solve the problem when I came to him to talk through something. That’s who he is. He wants to make everything ok. I appreciate that about him, but sometimes I just want him to listen. Now, when I come to him, I feel safe to talk to him, I know that I can tell him, I just want you to listen, don’t try to fix it. And he wont. He will just listen and comfort me. It doesn’t mean he doesn’t want to fix it, but he knows if I want him to step in, I will ask. Wives, you need to communicate what you need in that moment, husbands, just sit and listen. Ask her what she needs from you so you can be the support she is needing in the moment. Remember, we can’t read each other’s minds.
Keep the Romance Alive!
- Remember Special Occasions: Remember and celebrate important dates, such as anniversaries, birthdays, and other significant milestones. Thoughtful gestures on these occasions convey your commitment and love. This is actually something I am not very good with. I have learned systems to help me, I have my calendar alerts and all that to help, but my husband is good with this when it comes to me. He’s not good with other people’s birthdays, I am always the one that has to remind him to call people because it’s their birthday, but when it comes to us, he never forgets. He is prepared for any occasion. My birthday, our anniversary, anything special, he has a beautiful card written out, flowers and if it’s an occasion that calls for a plan, he’s ready to talk through what we are going to do. It means a lot to me because it shows he cares.
- Surprise Acts of Romance: Keep the romance alive by surprising your wife with unexpected romantic gestures. This could be writing a heartfelt note, planning a candlelit dinner, or expressing your love in creative ways. My husband sends me a text every day on his first break at work in the morning. He messages me “I love you, I hope you slept well,” and asks about our animals and kids then wishes me a good day. There are some days he even takes a video of the sunrise when he gets to work and says how it’s a beautiful sunrise for his beautiful wife. It’s cheesy. But I love it. It makes me feel so special.
- Respect and Appreciation: Treat your wife with respect and appreciation. Recognize and acknowledge her contributions to the family and express gratitude for the role she plays in your life. I mentioned this already, but make it a point to notice the things she does. Does she work? Thank her, show her you see that hard work. Does she stay at home and homeschool? Thank her for pouring into your kids and giving up her days to teach them. Does she stay at home taking care of the littles all day? Don’t just come home asking “what did you do all day”. Thank her for loving on your babies, for feeding and caring for them while trying to care for the house too. Notice the things she does and acknowledge it.
Love and Respect Will Help Your Marriage Thrive
Remember that the ways individuals feel and receive love can vary, so open communication about each other’s preferences and needs is key. Being attentive, responsive, and intentional in expressing love helps nurture a strong and fulfilling marriage.
Showing each other love is so important, but making sure your wife feels loved is crucial to a successful marriage. If she feels loved, it will be easier for her to show you, the husband, the respect you crave. Alright! This was part one of the love and respect. Stay tuned for the next post to hear how a husband can feel respected! Obviously, I am not the husband, but over the years I have researched, and learned from experience what a man needs. And a lot of what I am going to talk about has come directly from my husband and what a man needs. Start showing each other love, and see things begin to transform in your marriage!
Love you Mama!
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