A husband needs his wife’s respect. He needs the encouragement of a wife who is supportive of his leadership. He does not need someone to mock him or criticize his every mistake; this will discourage him from becoming a good effective, loving leader in the home.
To respect or reverence her husband means a wife is to honor the position of headship given to him by God. A wife is to highly esteem the position God has given her husband as head, even if his behavior makes that difficult to do.
God is the One Who appoints a husband to lovingly lead his wife. If a wife does not honor and respect her husband’s God-given role, she is setting herself against God’s Word and will. Opposing God is a very dangerous and foolish thing for anyone to do – man or woman.
Earlier in this article it was stated that every godly person wants to do the will of God. But a woman who does not understand the biblical priorities God has given her can end up actually opposing the will of God for her and her family! That is why it is important for a woman to understand and put into practice the role God has called her to fulfill.
Respect and reverence for her husband is a priority for a wife in marriage. The model for how a Christian wife should respect and honor her husband is best seen in the way the Church is to love and honor Christ (Eph 5:24). This kind of love and respect from a wife to a husband can be shown in many ways. She can:
- serve him willingly;
- acknowledge his God-ordained place as the head;
- respond to his leadership in obedience;
- listen to him;
- love and receive him;
- praise and edify him;
- trust him;
- be unified in purpose and will with him;
- be a true helper.
As a Christian wife prays, studies her Bible and seeks the Lord, she will discover many more ways to love and respect her husband in a way that glorifies God and honors her husband.
BEING A MODEL OF GODLY RESPECT
Many women have difficulty respecting their husbands. They think a husband has to first behave in a certain way or act perfectly, and then they will respect and honor him. But that is not biblical respect.
Just as a wife should not have to “earn” her husband’s love by trying to be perfect, neither should a husband have to “earn” his wife’s respect. A husband should love his wife because God has charged him to do so. In the same way, a wife should respect her husband because God has charged her to do so in His Word.
Of course, a wife should always strive to be a godly woman her husband can easily love; and a husband should work at living in a godly manner that his wife can respect. But neither a husband’s love nor a wife’s respect can be earned.
Respect is a choice a woman makes. She willingly decides that she will honor and respect the position of headship God has given her husband.