Christian Living | Marriage

How to Show Your Husband Christlike Love

August 21, 2017

Seek to Love Your Husband Completely

I want to build my husband up, not break him down.
I want to pursue him, not what I can get from him.
I want to encourage his calling, not question or ignore it.
I want to seek his good, not neglect it.

Such resolutions have been on my mind after a recent sermon.

One of my pastors at Grace Community Church preached on love, on what it looks like practically in marriage. He focused on a verse I’ve never connected with love before—not one from the treasured 1 Corinthians 13, but another in the second letter to the very same church.

“I will most gladly spend and be spent for your souls…” 2 Corinthians 12:15

Isn’t that what Jesus did? In descending to earth, performing miracle after miracle, sharing His teaching, willingly offering his life at the cross…He gave His very self for our spiritual welfare.

This heart-giving statement comes from Paul, and it stems from a Gospel-filled heart. The unmarried apostle wasn’t speaking to a wife, but to one equally as dear to him—his brothers and sisters in Christ, the church.

His devotion to them displays Christlike love that can inspire any relationship—from friendship to parenthood—but most powerfully marriage, the union of two souls.

Like my pastor did, we’re going break his declaration down. Before continuing, keep this quote in mind: “Marriage is not about finding your true love, but being true love.”

“I WILL”

Just two words, but two words of immense commitment. Not I can, or I think, or I will try, but I will. Paul will love the Corinthians to the very end. Do we have such a deep determination in our marriage?

Many of us said vows on our wedding day, and this phrase kickstarted their lines. Saying you will love your spouse is a promise, and it only comes to fulfillment if it’s a daily goal.

So “I will” is a mindset. It’s a personal, godly ambition to persevere in upholding kindness and selflessness, independent of your husband’s behavior. True love is a heartfelt dedication to his well-being.

Jesus exemplifies this to us by firmly placing His love upon us even when we sin, keeping us as His until we’re united with Him physically in heaven.

Questions to ponder:

What troubles you most about your husband? Keep in your mind: “I WILL love him, even though I cannot change this, even in this hard moment, even in this frustrating moment.”

In difficult and everyday situations pray to God and ask: what does it look like to love him in this moment?

I will forgive…

I will wait…

I will encourage…

I will pray…

Maybe it’s holding your tongue, to give him space to cool down, to wait for a wise time to speak. Maybe it’s giving words of encouragement, or asking questions about his day that would give him joy. Maybe it’s just listening without your phone in hand.

“GLADLY SPEND AND BE SPENT”

Paul passionately desires to provide for the Corinthians – materially and internally. He seeks to invest in them, and not only that, does so with pleasure!

We are to give not only gifts to our husband, but our very self. Everything you are. God gave us not only the gift of salvation, but His very Son. 

The world makes love “me-centric”—what can I get from this relationship? Paul, however, clearly shows that biblical love, the love Christ exemplified to us, is “you-centric”—how can I give to you? This goes against the core of our being, but it leads to purer love.

Our heart should be so intertwined with our husband’s that giving to him is a joy to us.

When we seek to love our husband by giving of ourselves, we help another soul grow, another soul thrive, and it fuels us to continue to serve. Sometimes that fruit is not immediately apparent, but God is faithful to use our sacrifice, for it pleases Him. Remember, the eyes cannot perceive the depths of the heart, but our God is mighty to save and sanctify.

Questions to ponder:

What does your husband enjoy? How can you support that hobby or habit, even if it’s not your interest? How can you show your admiration for him in it?

What little surprise could you give him? A love post-it note? A evening away from cleaning or work and spending time together? A thank you?

Spiritually, what can you do to boost his day? Nurture a grateful heart for him to come home to, rather than an anxious or bitter one? Tell him you’re praying for him? Share stories of progress or humor about the kids? Praise him as a father?

Ultimately, we must orient our heart to love. This comes from being in the Word, which prompts us to recall Christ’s redemptive love and reflect it to our husband.

True love is costly, and thus its strength must come from the One whose strength is endless. Our love needs to be “Scripture saturated and Spirit submitted.”

Remember, God gave everything—His very own Son—to love you. He forgave and committed Himself to you forever. Give, because He abundantly gives to you in Christ. I pray to do the very same thing!

**Note: if you are in an abusive relationship, you are to love by seeking help. God does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but in the truth. His plan for marriage does not include enduring harm, but in faithfully honoring the Lord and your husband in the process of correction and healing.**

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  1. What a great view. I definitely need to sit down and think over my I wills. Thanks for sharing! I’d love for you to join us at the Aprons and Pearls Linkup! It’s live until Sunday evening.

    1. Thank you for reading, Robbi. It is much to think about, even in my own marriage! And I will have to check out that link up! 🙂

  2. Hi, Dani,
    I believe this is my first time stopping by your blog. This piece is very well-written and completely spot-on as far as how we should love in a selfless, Christ-like manner. I’m stopping by from the By His Grace Bloggers group. 🙂
    Jen @ Being Confident of This

  3. “Our heart should be so intertwined with our husband’s that giving to him is a joy to us.”
    Definitely needed this reminder today! Thanks!

  4. “I will” is such a volitional statement. This implies that we have a choice. Thanks for putting this on the table for all of us. No matter how long we’ve been married, there’s always room for this kind of adjustment.

    1. It’s a challenge for sure, to have such determination of heart like our Lord. May we be faithful in pursuing this in our relationships. Thank you for stopping by, Michele!

  5. The word “gladly” jumped out to me here. Sometimes I do something for my husband because I know I should but it’s not done with gladness. That is definitely an opportunity to check myself and remember to act in love always.

    1. Yes! I almost left it out by accident in the header, haha… but glad I didn’t! It’s so key and I needed that reminder to serve with joy, not merely obligation. Same goes for our obedience to the Lord – our service should be born out of love.

  6. This is a wonderful encouragement! It’s so good to think again about the vows we’ve made and focus on actually putting them into practice in a day to day sense. Thank you for sharing this 🙂

    1. Yeah! It’s helpful to take time to review ours vows every now and then. We have ours hanging in our home, and I need to be intentional in reminding myself of them. Thank you for reading, Elizabeth! 🙂

        1. I got them artistically printed as a part of an anniversary gift for my husband – an idea to keep in mind! 🙂 You can find people on etsy who create nice prints of a wedding photo surrounded by your vows.

  7. CHRIST LIKE LOVE!!!! The Love that continues to blossom and remind us constantly of the vow taken in the presence of the Lord.

    “I will” enjoy his company, surprise him, and spiritually uplift him- today’s takeaway for me

    Blessings
    Diana

    1. Love how you mentioned its continues to blossom! Christlike love only grows sweeter and stronger. Thanks for visiting Diana! Appreciate you blogging sister 🙂

  8. What a great perspective! I love the verse, “I will most gladly spend and be spent for your souls…” 2 Corinthians 12:15 . It really jumped out at me–we are so often “spent” by the end of the day. Mothering is exhausting, and sometimes our husbands get the leftovers… and they are not always served with a glad heart–a great reminder to be conscious of our actions and our attitude behind them. Stopping by from Grace Girls! Happy to meet you! 🙂

    1. It’s a verse that’s ofter overlooked, but so powerful! And I totally relate – it’s hard to spend ourselves for our husband even after a long day of mothering. The good news is as we “spend” we are blessed in return, as long as we go to the Lord for strength and find joy in obedience. Thank you for reading, Vickie! 🙂

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