That time I wanted to help another woman’s husband…

It happened many years ago at a work picnic. My husband and I were talking to some executives from the company where my husband worked. These men and women were the boss of the boss of my husband’s boss. My husband was just starting his career, he was low on the totem-pole and these social events were a new world to us.

One of the older couples stuck out. They were sweet, talkative and had been married many years. They shared about their upcoming retirement, and the guys had a great time chatting about old cars. You know, their fantasy toy cars. {Please tell me my husband is not the only one!}


Then, the conversation shifted and the wife said loudly to all of us, “My husband has no clue about what we can and can’t afford. He has no financial discipline. He has no concept of what we actually need for retirement, that’s why I am in charge of our finances.”


Years have passed, and I still cringe. The husband’s shoulders sunk, his cheeks turned rosy red. He was speechless. Tension filled the room. We sensed his embarrassment, and an awkward silence followed.

All I wanted to do was hug him. And, scream at her.

I kept my mouth shut.

He looked like a helpless bruised, shamed teddy bear.

Shortly thereafter, they left the party. My mind raced about the fight they were having.

I couldn’t help but think … That’s Wife 101. She knew better.

As we were headed home that evening, I had a range of emotions.

First, I felt guilty about judging her. I don’t know what transpired before this party. Perhaps she was fully justified with her feelings. Regardless, it still was not the time to talk about his shortcomings.

It is easy to see flaws in others, right? But, the Bible tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5:15, “Look for the best in each other.”

I need to work on that.

Then, I started to self-reflect. I needed to ask my husband:

Have I ever made you feel disrespected?

But, I was afraid of his response.

Rick Warren says, “The quality of your life will be determined by the kind of questions you have the courage to ask yourself.”

I finally asked my husband, and it led to a great, lengthy conversation about love and respect. I was reminded to watch my words and think before I speak.

“Each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.”
Ephesians 5:13

 So, remember that question I finally got the courage to ask my husband…

What would your husband say?

Married to a Stranger

As I sat in the Mothers of Preschoolers (“MOPS”) meeting, I sat still listening to her story.

“We were best friends, madly in love, when we got married. We had two, beautiful healthy kids. We poured everything into our children. We raised them in a wonderful, Christian home. They grew up and started their own lives (one of them went into full-time ministry).”

Picture perfect, right?

She went on to say, “After the kids were gone, I looked at my husband and realized I didn’t know him. He was a stranger. There was nothing left between us. All that energy and attention focused on the kids, but we didn’t make time for each other. After 26 years of marriage, we divorced.”

When I first heard her story, I thought – Were they really madly in love? How could two people grow that much apart?

Then, life happened to us. Miscarriage, followed by a complicated pregnancy – it was a tough year. After our healthy baby finally arrived, I was consumed with late night feedings, lack of sleep, my husband’s long work hours, etc. There was always something.

Life was about survival. I struggled to get through the day. The moment he walked in the door, I would go upstairs for a quiet shower. The kids would tackle him like a jungle gym. By bedtime, we were exhausted. A kiss on the cheek, an “I love you” and then we would go to sleep. Repeat the next day.

Life was mundane. We were living on auto-pilot.

Through it all, though, we withered the storms. We remained faithful to each, committed to our marriage. We prayed. We read the Bible and attended church every weekend.

Picture perfect, right?

We were committed to each other, but were on the verge of disaster. We didn’t argue, but there was a silent wedge growing between us. We had put our marriage on the back-burner.

One night, God prompted me to share her story with my husband. He responded immediately, “I can totally understand how that can happen. Kids require so much.”

Her story then opened up a new line of communication in our marriage. Over the next several weeks, we had many in-depth conversations and made changes in our relationship. I made a mental, but detailed list of why I married him.

Now, we make each other a priority every day. I remember why I fell in love with him. When he works late, I miss him (not the quiet time away from the kids), but … him. We appreciate our marriage because it’s fun and exciting, not just out of obligation. Instead of being the person I rely on, he’s the love of my life!

When our kids start their own families, I pray that we are still laughing and enjoying our marriage. For that to happen, we must continue to work hard, make time for each other, remain together … as one.


“…a man leaves his father and mother and cherishes his wife. No longer two, they become one flesh.”
Ephesians 5:31