I love my husband dearly. But one area where we really struggled in our marriage, where we had a number of arguments about, is the fact that my husband loves structure, organization, and a person working hard. As for me, I joke that“I put the pro in procrastination.” I’m totally content with a pile of clothes on the floor or a pile of bills and other papers on the kitchen counter. Both of those piles will be dealt with. Eventually. And I know which pile contains which item. Most of the time.
So when my husband found ways I could be trying harder, he didn’t hesitate to tell me so. But it hurt every time he found something I could be doing better. Whether it was a more efficient way of loading the dishwasher, or how to organize our mail, all I heard was “you’re doing it wrong” and “you’re not good enough.”
It made me angry. Defensive. I wanted to hear he was proud of me. That I was good enough for him. We had many fights and arguments about it. I started to look forward to when he was going out of town for business so I could have a break from the questions and the arguments and could do things my way. There seemed no end in sight to this argument and I feared what our marriage would become if nothing changed.
No matter how much we argued or discussed this issue, neither of us changed, because neither of us could change how God created us. Or the roles that God gave us.
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Our Husband’s Roles
All the way back in Genesis 2:15, “The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and protect it.”
God designed our husband to provide for his family. Yes, sometimes our lives demand that both husband and wife work. Or if there is no husband in the picture or he is not working, the woman must work to provide for her family. But if your husband is fulfilling his role of providing for his family, of bringing home a paycheck that pays your bills and puts food on the table, well then he is fulfilling his role as the provider.
And the second role Genesis 2:15 says the man is to protect his home. A husband fulfilling this role will have different ways of doing that. He may have ideas about how the budget should be spent so that the family will be protected financially and so no one will go hungry. He may have a particular way he wants something cared for in the home, so that he knows his family is living in a safe and clean home.
After years of contention with my husband, lots of tears and arguments and prayers, one day while reading the book Created to Be His Helpmeet, God helped me see that my husband is a visionary. My husband sees the big picture, and he sees the details, and he sees how to make things better. Those are all characteristics of God. And once I began seeing my husband in that way, it was marriage transforming.
I naturally get defensive whenever my husband questions why things were done a certain way. But I’m training myself to remember this is the way God created my husband. God made him to take care of his family, to protect his family, and this is how he is doing it. It may not be the way I want my husband to do it, but he is doing exactly what God made him do, and I need to embrace it. Not just embrace it, but appreciate my husband’s desire to fight for his family by ensuring things are done a certain way.
Reflection: How does your husband show he provides for and protects the family? How do you respond?
Our Role as Helpmeet
“The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”
These men we married, our princes, our knights in shining armor, were not created to simply meet all our needs. Nope, they have quite a few of their own, and it is our role to help them.
No longer do they work in the peaceful garden, they work out in the wild, where the work is hard and often unappreciated, where the stress is high and where there is sin and struggle.
When our husbands come home, they are tired and want the home to be a place that is less stressful than work. To be a sanctuary after the wildness of their workplace.
They need our encouragement. They need us to pray over them. To make the house a safe place for them to come home to. They want to feel needed and respected and that we genuinely care about them and their needs.
Our role is also stated in Titus 2:4-5. Wives are to “love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands.” It comes naturally to us to love our children and be busy at home. But the other areas do not come naturally. They are ones we need to put in a little more effort for. The areas we need to be praying for in ourselves.
Proverbs 31:10-12 says “A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.”
Once I became more intentional about taking care of the things around the house that mattered the most to my husband, he felt the love and respect from me and began commenting on my way of doing things a lot less. He could sense my desire to care about the things that he cared about and it brought such peace and freedom to our marriage. I was learning to embrace how he performed his roles and he was learning to embrace how I performed mine.
When you find little or big ways to show your husband you care about him and appreciate how hard he works for your family your husband will notice. And then your husband will know that not only are you a good wife, a loving wife, but also a wife who is fighting for him as much as he is fighting to provide for you. It will make him stand a little taller. Make him eager to come home and see you and his family. Make him more and more into the man God created him to be. Oh, what power we have as wives!! God gives us that power when we love, rather than try to change our husbands.
Practical Ways We Could Be Our Husband’s Helpmeet
- When he comes home from work take a moment to give him a kiss or a hug and ask how his day went and tell him you’re really glad he’s home.
- Take time after the kids are in bed to talk about your marriage. Your heart. His heart. What you could be doing for each other to show each other you care.
- Finally tackle that project or errand your husband has asked you to do but you’ve been avoiding.
- Do the chores around the house that matter the most to him.
- Reminisce about the good times.
- Hold hands.
- Make love.
- Pray together.
- Give him an opportunity to pursue a hobby or passion of his he hasn’t had a lot of time for lately.
- Give him a gift just because you love him.
- Pray over him before he goes to work.
- Read a book about marriage together, such as Love and Respect or The Five Love Languages. (Oh, and ladies I highly recommend you read What’s It Like To Be Married to Me? Wonderful, eye-opening marriage transforming book!)
- Go on a date.
Reflection: How have you been your husband’s helpmeet lately? What things could you do to show him you care?
When your life revolves around caring for your kids, the thought of doing even more seems daunting. Your husband is able to take care of himself, your children cannot. But that’s not the truth. Our husbands desperately need us, even if they won’t admit it. God knew they needed someone to help and encourage them, and so He made us. Don’t think just cooking meals and doing the laundry and caring for the children shows your husband you care. He may appreciate your hard work, but it doesn’t show you care about him as an individual, as your lover and friend.
Do you find it easy or challenging to be your husband’s helpmeet? What do you like to do to show your husband you care about him? What would you like to do to be a better helpmeet?