Do You Know Your Wife? (Or will you be left humming the cheeseburger song?)
Do you know your wife? This is Teresa, my wife. She is mine. So hands off 🙂 She is beautiful, and strong, a wife of noble character. I left my parents to cleave to her. I love her and our relationship together with Christ is the foundation of our family, but it was not always that way.
Today’s “Monday Men’s Musing” is something that most of us do not really think about.
I want you to think about this for a second. Imagine that you are driving in a minivan with all your kids (2 for me- how many do you have?), the VeggieTales cd is on its 7th “replay” and you are ready to throw it out the window, yet something about the “Cheeseburger” song makes you forget the screaming kids in the back. The song ends and as that “David and the Giant Pickle” song begins you remember that you are a bit grumpy, the A/C is not working and the sun is beating down, your wife is not talking to you because you just insensitively told little Johnny to “shut it.” As you drive, you look to your right, over at you wife who gives you the cold shoulder…and then darkness … You awake in a hospital bed hooked up to an IV, your left arm and leg in a cast, you are feeling a bit drowsy from the morphine, but you will make a full recovery. You again look to your right and see your wife sitting beside you in a chair with stitches in her forehead, a smile on her lips that you are awake, then she begins to cry…she tells you…all the kids died after your minivan was T-boned by an 18-wheeler…
Now back to reality. I want you to ask yourself this question. “What kind of life would you have, as Husband and wife, right now if your kids were suddenly taken from you?” I suppose you would be grief stricken – that is natural – but you have each other right? Or do you? Do you only live for the kids? Do you even know each other? So, if your kids were to suddenly perish or were taken from you in some a wartime scenario, what kind of life would you have together as husband and wife? Do you do things together? Do you talk? If your kids died what would you talk about? What common interests do you have? If you have no idea, you had best do something about it.
Now let’s say we fast forward. Lets say you are 50ish years old. You are just walking your youngest daughter down the aisle, you just said, “Her mother and I do” in response to the minister asking who gives the girl to this man. The next day you awake…now you are alone with your wife. The kids are gone. Let’s ask this question again worded differently, “What kind of life would you have, as Husband and wife, if your kids grow up and all leave?”
Genesis 2:24 says:
Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
Marriage between a man and a woman is the only permanent relationship ordained in by God in the Bible. All other relationships are temporary. Even the parent child relationship is temporary. Sure, you may have contact with your parents, at church, at gatherings, you may see them every day. You may hug your parents and kiss them, or care for them in old age. But the biblical way of things is that you will leave them and hold fast to (cleave to) your spouse. Man and wife are the foundational relationship in a family. Your kids will leave, and the Lord willing, cleave to their spouse.
Yes, your kids will leave, either by death, marriage or age, barring any disability or special circumstances. What then? How is your marriage built? Is it built on the foundation of Christ, and on a relationship with each other? One of the most harmful things you can do for your kids and your marriage is to build your marriage around them. I see so many families that focus their marriage on the kids. In fact, sadly I admit that we used to have a marriage like this…Daddy works 70 hours per week to pay for the things the family needs…when what the family really needs is Daddy at home to be the spiritual head, lead in prayer, bible study, to love mommy, and show the kids that! Men, the best thing you can do for your kids is to be a faithful and godly Christian husband. And it is not up to your wife to ensure this happens. It is your responsibility. God made us the heads of our homes, so we had best prayerfully lean on the strength of Christ as we cleave to our wives and ensure that this happens.
Let me clarify, Children are a blessing and a joy. But the joy of Children should not be the foundation of the marriage. They should be a product of it. Consider the question. Even though our marriage has improved considerably in this regards, I know that we still need to improve. For instance, when we go out for date night, what is the first thing we talk about? The kids. What about other passions? What about causes you may be involved in? What about faith life? What about her hobbies or interests? Do you know your wife?
When I am 60 I do not want us to be sitting in our chairs, sipping our wine, with nothing to say to each other, all the while I am humming the “Cheeseburger Song,” reminiscing about “better times”…Even at 60, 70, 80 I want to be cleaved with my wife, one body in Christ, until the day that one of us is called home. I will ensure that Christ is central and that my wife and I are the foundational relationship of our family.
What about you?
And here is what you have been waiting for…the Cheeseburger Song…”His Cheesburger”