Agape LOVE how deep is your love?
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her. ~ Ephesians 5:25
About 15 years ago I read a book explaining what God expects of me as a husband* and what loving my wife in a Christ-like way entails. I wanted to be mentally prepared when the time came. I was taught the answers to life’s challenges were in the Bible, and with the divorce rate being so high, I wanted to gain a Biblical understanding of how not to become a part of this statistic. As I began to learn about agape love, sacrificial Godly love, I analyzed my past relationships, and it made me ask myself, “How deep is your love?” The more I read the more I realized I couldn’t marry just anyone, because I couldn’t do what’s required for just anyone. As a husband, you’re required to put her needs before your own, and to love & cherish her the same way Christ loves His bride…the Church.
In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. ~ Ephesians 5:28
We’re selfish by nature, so it isn’t easy to constantly put someone else before ourselves. And practicing these principles with someone who doesn’t reciprocate your effort will leave you feeling empty, unappreciated, and taken for granted. They only work if you both share the same belief system, and your marriage is rooted in the Word of God. It’s important she understands what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. A woman who doesn’t understand these principles could potentially take your kindness for weakness and label you as not having a backbone, when that couldn’t be further from the truth. A woman who understands these principles will recognize your effort to be a Servant Leader and not abuse the situation.
Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything. ~ Ephesians 5:24
There’s a lot of responsibility that comes with being a Servant Leader. In most cases men are physically stronger than women, but that doesn’t mean we override her needs and wishes because we’re the man in the relationship. She has a voice as well as you, and if you attempt to silence her, you’ll eventually find yourself engulfed in silence because she’ll be gone. Trampling her spirit will leave her feeling anything but loved & cherished. Some men love to play the Biblical “submit to your husband” card but conveniently forget what Ephesians 5 calls him to do. If men do what they’re supposed to do, it will make her want to submit to you because she trusts your judgement, believing what you’re doing is in the best interest of both of you.
Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. ~ Ephesians 5:21
Mutual submission creates balance and plays a major role in the success of a relationship. If you submit to her needs, she’ll want to submit to yours. But if either of you constantly put your needs before the other, selfishness will create an imbalance and place a wedge between the two of you.
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. ~ Ephesians 5:25-27
It is our responsibility as husbands to uplift, encourage, support, and empower our wives to be the best version of themselves. We must be sensitive to their needs and use our words to help cleanse their spirits and wash away the pain of the past. If we build them up their lights will shine even brighter for us, and for God’s glory. By practicing agape love, sacrificial Godly love, the depth of our love will be on full display, because her joy will be a direct reflection of the husband & friend we continuously strive to be.
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