It was one of “those” days that happen in every marriage! We weren’t fighting, arguing or having a dispute, but my wife and I were not quite connecting the way we should. We kept moving throughout the day, bustling from one thing to the next. I knew we both needed to slow down, communicate, and get on the same page and all would return to normal. But instead, my guy brain thought, “We can power through this, let’s just keep it moving, lets get the next thing done!”
So Natalie and I jumped in the car and drove off to accomplish our next to-do item. I didn’t slow down a bit! We were only a short distance from our house when I hit a second speed bump, the car shook and my wife's true feelings were revealed. She grabbed my hand, looked at me and stated, “I am so fascinated with you.”
Typically that would be an awesome moment that I would have reveled in. But in our married world, the word "fascinated" takes on a different meaning! For my wife and me, fascinated is another word for being frustrated.
Frustrations happen to us, but being fascinated is a choice. Instead of allowing circumstances to dictate how we feel, we can make a choice to take control of our actions and feelings. So we can choose to be fascinated with something rather than allowing ourselves to get frustrated with it.
So back to the story… what happened to create this fascinating circumstance? I would like to say that it began earlier in the day, but in reality it all began in the first three chapters of Genesis, the first book in the Bible. It was here that the original design for man and woman was created! It was here that we first learn that men and women are equal, but different!
We are equal in worth, love and gifting from God. But we are different in how we both represent the image of God. (See Genesis 1:27) Men are logical, and women are relational. Note: I did not say emotional! Emotions are a God-given gift to help women be more relational, whereas men are more driven and task-oriented.
On that day, I was being logical and living out of man brain, thinking, “Let’s get there and get it done.” Meanwhile, my wife was not feeling secure or communicated with. The two biggest needs women have from a man is security and communication. When those two are missing, it creates uneasiness and uncertainty for us!
There is one simple verse that helps us guys relate to the women in our lives:
1 PETER 3:7 NLT
7 In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered.
Three simple points: Honor, understand, and treat the woman in your life as an equal partner. While relationships are not an exact science, there are principles that you can follow. I have found this simple, little exercise below so helpful in our marriage and keeping us from being fascinated oh, so often!
Men, take the challenge! Ask her how you are doing at providing security and communicating. Then ask, what does it mean to “honor” her? Are you treating her as an equal partner? DO NOT RESPOND! Just listen! And then proceed to ask questions to better understand her.
For more on this topic, listen to my message from April 8 at Bridge City Church from the Assembly Required series!