The Marriage Knot 

knotHusband, I Love Youknot

bride and groom

"The Lord grant that you will find rest, each of you, in the house of her husband. Then she kissed them and they lifted up their voices and wept."

I trust you wives or "wives to be" will have or will find a lot of rest in the house of your husband. This means a lot of things to a lot of people. My message to the wives: Tell him, "Honey, I love you."

How many women through the years have come to my office complaining that their husband just does not love them, or, I know my husband loves me, but he never shows it. (The same is said about husbands.)

A lady came into the pastor's study. The following story is rather long but it gives important details. After the lady stopped weeping, she started telling her story, She was relatively unknown to the pastor. Her husband had turned to drink and he was running around and because of that the home life was anything but heaven. The children were being affected by this and she just didn't know what to do, except try to seek counseling.

"What will I do" she cried out. You know when people cry out like this you just really can't tell them what to do, you just can only suggest what they might do and this person said "I just have to have help". Her story continued…. it turned out she had come from a very large . She was the last of a lot of children and after the last child left -actually ran away her mother died. The father remarried. Now some of the children will not have anything to do with the new mother.

This young woman, who had come to the pastor, had found her lover in the armed services and were planning on getting married. In the mean time she comes up pregnant. She asks him, "How long do you have in the service?" He is not sure and all of a sudden disappears just leaving her standing.

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After awhile she and the baby go back to California and tell her parents that there was a divorce that she was left with the baby. In the meantime her husband shows up - they get married and then the marriage really starts to disintegrate. So she does not know what to do. I don't love him he doesn't love me what do I do. Now, she wants to, like, investigate her husband. Who is he, where did he come from? They had gotten married so quickly.

This is an illustration of how people have come together to live as husband and wife not knowing each other. Certainly this makes for a weakness in the element of love. They, as many, think, if they just get married love would automatically come. It does not automatically come in the process. There is no such thing as automatic love. It is in our interest to learn about one another. In the case mentioned, these two people had very little happiness growing up and then trying to get together in a loving atmosphere did not work, it was no surprise that situation resulted as it did.

This lady we will call on Madam X was seeking as many are currently today, and you may be also one of those ,trying to find acceptance in purely physical love. True, sex is a basic human need but can not be defined before marriage with a blessing. The basic need, more than sex is love and this need must be learned. Just like someone who wants to play a musical instrument. There's got to be a continual practice and love has to be practiced and I'm not talking about sex.

Someone once said that to learn one has to discipline himself and that's where discipline is often a very distasteful word. Many are sure that love is guaranteed to be part of all human beings but it is not that simple

There are people today who are not finding the acceptance of love. If you were born in an atmosphere of love you really got a head start. If you were born in the atmosphere of distrust or an atmosphere that promoted everything but love, like - hatred , tension, selfishness ….these things were taught, so that is what you learn. It is just like machine gears coming together that don't match. That is what happens when young people come together and get married without learning the art of love or having it played out in their home.

We are talking about husbands hearing: "I love you." The Scripture we quoted earlier: "The woman found in the house of her husband rest." The Scripture: "The Lord grant that you will find rest each of you in the house of your husband"

Today we want to restore our homes. Many think, however, that America has been invaded. True, but not by a foreign country invading us through an attack by terrorist, but though the damaging of the family unit.

If we can put our homes in order we then are contributing to the stability of our land. If we don't we are contributing to the fall of a great country.

I have four things to say to the wife.

1. Wife , Love Your Husband - Respect Him

Ephesians 5:33 tells us that "the wife should see that she reverences her husband."

The wife can alienate the affections of her partner in life

The Scriptures say: "Wife you are to respect your husband." I know what you're thinking "You don't know my husband. How can I respect him?" Well there has to be good in your husband. You would be surprised how many people say in one way or another to me, "I love my husband, I want to build my husband up. I want to do things for my husband, but I don't know how to do them. I don't know what to do"

If we start with the basic rules in the Word of God, and that is the best starting point, we can find help. The other things that you learn and see and hear can be incorporated into your living. Remember the Scriptures says, "Wives, you are to respect her husband", even if he is not respectable you are to respect your husband. Ouch!

2. "Wife , Submit To Your Husband"

bride and groom

We looked at this aspect under Duties of Wives to Husbands, but let's approach "submission" with different words and illustrations. I think it will help, because this issue is a big one.

Eph. 5:22 Submit unto him. "Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands as unto the Lord, for the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the Church. And he is the savior of the body. Therefore, as the Church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be in subjection to their own husbands in everything."

I know you are saying: "Is this word applicable to the 21st century. It was written many years ago can it be adaptable to me now as a wife?" Western culture has looked today to psychology and the social sciences for guidance in the direction of our lives. In the main God has been left out of the guidance, which we are seeking. We're looking to psychology. We are looking to social acceptance. We are looking to all the social sciences. We must realize that the basic orientation of our culture is away from God. In fact the basic flow of our culture is that which actually drives a person away from God.

The prescription for family life does not take God into account. But a blessings comes when we read in Psalm 1:1: "Blessed is the man that walks not in the counsel of the ungodly" the referenced could be for us today.

Perhaps the blessedness of our family life has been lost because we too often walk in the counsel of the ungodly, in the sources that do not recognize God. When the family is out of order, it is like the machine gears I mentioned earlier. They don't match; we need our order and God knows that. and God is good and order is good. God says wife be in submission to your husband. He doesn't mean to be a doormat. It does not mean to be a colorless dishrag either. It just means something entirely different. And, that is what I want to share with you.

One lady said if your husband walks all over you, you are lying down on the job. God doesn't want to demean women today at all. Sure he made Adam and from Adam's rib he made women. God is trying to put in order our family life. He wants each woman to be a genuine person. He will work with each of you in terms of your own personality and in terms of your own everyday relationship to make you a genuine submissive person that he intends you to be.

What does it mean to be submissive? It simply means recognizing that the husband has the final say in the making of a decision - that's all it means. It is saying my husband has the final say so in the making of a decision. Now you can disagree with him. That is not bad but don't make a full-scale war out of "disagree." Disagree. State your case. Have a family counsel. Lobby if you would like with the children, but when the decision has to be made the husband has the responsibility.

There was a pastor who went home for lunch. He did not live far from the church. His wife is going to have lunch for him at 12 o'clock, but he was never there at 12 o'clock This irritated and agitated her until this little hill grew into a mountain and was totally out of proportion. Finally she said" "We've got to do something about this disagreement You want to eat at 12 o'clock but you're not here at 12:00 o'clock. I'm sitting here twiddling my thumbs waiting while the lunch is getting cold. What are we going to do about it."

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Well, one day she decided to go to the office. When there she found that a Catholic priest was also in the study. Suddenly the Priest looked at his watch and said, "Five minutes to 12:00. I have to go. My lunch is waiting for me at noon." This was all it took. She said her husband: "That Catholic priest thinks more of his housekeeper than you do of your wife. What are you going to do? So they make this agreement. 12:30 was eating together time, if either party was not present at 12:30 then they would be free because that was the time to eat.

For this family it was a major difficulty. It was like a Third World War to these people but they finally came together. Why didn't he see it sooner? People come to my office and it is so clear to me what they should do to change but they cannot see.

Another suggestion is to propose the decision. This is a way to deal with the disagreement. Decide that this is not the time to make a decision. We don't agree so let's talk about it later. And when the time comes to decide and there is still a disagreement according to the word of God the husband is to make the final decision. He must take the responsibility because it goes along with headship.

As husbands we do take upon ourselves a great responsibility and being head of our homes. So wife love your husband and his agent says submit unto your husband.

3. Wife - Play the role

This third aspect in Husband I Love you - is just play the role. And, what a wonderful role it is. Play the role as expressed in the Proverbs. 31:27.28; (Substitute the word "wife'")

"She (the wife) watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her."

While children and wives and mothers rise up and call you blessed would that your husband would also praise you. This is what God intends.

With this healthy role played, guiding principles are put in order. Your role as a wife does not mean you are put in a straitjacket, but these guiding principles make your life quite open for you.

There was this couple. They were always in a fight. Not just a small fight, but also a major battle. She went to a friend and shared her concern and frustration. What am I to do? It is like hell on earth. The reply was very simple. Treat your husband with a smile. That was simple but it changed the family. It all happened because of a smile. So wife, play the role, fulfill the role and smile. You will be surprised what this might do.

What is the major role? Do the "wife thing"!

First and foremost: The Word says: ( I know we already looked at these verses) Ephesians 6 and in 1 Peter 3:2,. Be subject in everything to your husband. Respect and have reverence for him - notice, regard, honor, esteem, defer to him, be deviated to him, praise him, love him and adore him exceedingly.

The pure and modest way in which wives are to conduct themselves plus the reverence for him must come from the hidden person of the heart, that is gentle and peaceful as unto the Lord.

Then: Think of ways, creative ways to tell him that you love him. How?
Leave love notes in places you know he'll be.

Here is behind the scene how my wife, Nancy, has played the "creative role" thing.: "My husband went to the country of Haiti. I wrote a note on his toothpaste saying, "Smile, I love you". I fixed a vitamin bottle of different colored capsules. Notes were written in the capsules. Instructions were to TAKE AS NEEDED.

Leave a love note under his pillow when you are gone.
Prepare a special "dish" for him.
Whatever creative fun loving way to express your love and appreciation for him - - do them.

How else can we be if we expect to have a husband who is called to love his wife as Christ loved the Church.

The first and greatest commandment is: "To love the Lord with our whole heart, soul, mind and strength and to love others (husbands included) as ourselves."

What goes around comes around. As each one humbles themselves and acknowledges their calling from the Lord as to how they are to act toward their spouse, there is no end to what God can do.

Love doesn't care how the other one treating them. Changes come about as we do our calling as a wife or husband.

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4. Wife - Love Your Husband Forever

Forever. Well, that was in the marriage ceremony, right? So, I say, "I love you" Reply: "I love you more." Well, I love you to the end of the earth." Reply: "I love you to infinity." "Ok, you win!" Here it is not how much, but how long.

On the first card I sent Nancy I wrote before my name - a line with arrow and the words "Always, Forever."

1 Corinthians 7:10 "To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord) A wife must not separate from her husband." The full meaning is this. Let her not prove faithless to her marriage vowels.

The Scripture admonishes first, wives don't leave your husband. Second it is to keep your husband and train your husband if necessary and make the husband as you want them to be. Training - - - wives have beautiful ways of doing that.

Someone wrote: You make your selection - let it be sealed forever. Give your entire thoughts to preparation for domestic use. Some wives keep their husbands in pickle, others keep them in hot water, but even poor varieties of husbands can be made sweet, tender and good if garnished with patience, well sweetened with smiles and given with many kisses wrapped in a mantle of love. Keep your husband as you want him and let God bless him through you.

But what happens to "forever" when one not a Christian. If you're asking how this can be if you are a Christian and your husband is not? What are you supposed to do. It is very difficult but one occasion a person came to me and said "Pastor I want to come to church. I want to praise God, I want to study, but my husband wants me to go somewhere else on Sunday. He is not a Christian and doesn't have the least interest as I do."

Now while every case is different, I suggested to her that she state her case and how it is important to her to worship God. But she must be submissive to him. If he said he wants to go to the lake, then go to the lake with him, but explained to him in a loving manner that you feel this is contrary to what you feel as an individual you should do.

After a time, when things like this continue, it is the testimony of many wives, that they will testify to the fact their husband was claimed for Jesus because they were submissive.

Your first obligation, if you are married, is to your husband as far as the world is concerned. Of course primarily you obligation is to God, but when you're in an operating in the family circle, then your obligation is to your husband. Some ladies have definitely withdrawn from their husbands and said this is a way it is going to be - God is leading me to do this. And all it has done but tear the home apart. My friends, the love of Jesus, which we cannot comprehend, can come forth from that person. Instead of alienating somebody we can bring one more person into the kingdom.

Husband, I love you. Those words need to be heard every day and in every way.

The phrase "I love you" can be said without using words. Without using words? Yes. How so. Well, as the phrase goes, "The proof is in the pudding."

Look at how the phrase originated as "the proof of the pudding is in the eating." It means that the true value or quality of something can only be judged when it's put to use. The meaning is often summed up as "results are what count."

Take this to the next level in our husband - wife relationship. The results in the grounded marriage is observing or receiving the benefits of love.

What about adding this phrase, "Actions speak louder than words."

When I was dating my wife to be and it developed into an engagement, she was given some words of wisdom from her dorm housemother. Nancy, after suffering a broken engagement, wound up in New Orleans to work at the graduate school for a MRE (Master in Religious Education).

The housemother, upon hearing of the engagement said to Nancy. "Never let a day go by without saying, 'I love you'".

So the feeling is expressed in actions. The phrase, you well know, is "actions speak louder than words."

Actions speak louder than words means that what you do is more significant than what you say.

Bottom line? Ask the Lord to help you be creative in "your actions" of love. You may be surprised what flows into your mind.

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