December 2, 2014

Understanding Women, Part 2

“In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church.

Ephesians 5:28-29 (NLT)

What Women Want was a romantic comedy, depicting a man who could read a woman’s thoughts and knew exactly what she desired.  While none of us have that capability, ladies, it is comforting to know that we try.  This is where we really have a disadvantage as men.  For instance, when a man gives you that look and says, “I don’t understand you”, he is not making a judgment call about you.  He really doesn’t understand!  Thankfully, God’s word gives us insight and understanding we wouldn’t otherwise have naturally.  In Ephesians, God gives specific counsel for how husbands and wives are to relate to one another.  The Bible tells a man to love his wife as he loves his own body.  He is to meet her physical and emotional needs.  In her research, Shaunti Feldhahn said, “A woman’s primary need is not financial security but emotional closeness.  So when a man gives more time to work because he loves and wants to provide for her, she feels work is a higher priority and is insecure of his love.  She wants his family attention more than anything else he could provide.”  Her research shows that 70% of married woman said they would endure financial insecurity if that was what it took to get closeness with their husbands.  What an insight for us guys to understand about the needs of our wives!  How emotionally close does your wife feel to you?  In all our sincere efforts to provide and care for our families, we may unknowingly be driving an emotional wedge in our marriages.  Consider the key passage from Ephesians again.  The comparison that the Bible gives us is that we are to care for our wives as Christ cared for the church.  Jesus came not only to meet our need for redemption, but to establish an intimate and personal relationship with God; this creates a sense of emotional and spiritual security.  He desires our closeness and gave up His own identity, as God, to become man so that, through His humanity and suffering, we may experience that closeness with Him.  In 1 Peter 5:7, God offers us this invitation: “Cast the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.”  This is our challenge, guys.  Care for your wife as Christ cares for you.  You may not know what she wants, but it won’t matter if you care for her like Jesus does.