As of today (1-22-19) I have been married to my best friend for seven months. I know that every young couple says these sorts of things, but she truly is my best friend and I love her so. Since the day we were married, living life with Cheyanne has taught me so many things about what it means to be a man of God; and I want to share a few of them today.
When I think about the word “husband” my mind goes to how Jesus used the word “husbandman” in John:
I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that bearers not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit (15:1-2).
The word husbandman means someone who works the soil and tends plants: a farmer. A husbandman is someone who cultivates crops. As a husband, it is my job to cultivate my wife and help her become fruitful in the same way that a farmer—a husbandman—helps his garden become fruitful. It is no accident that Jesus compares his church to a vine and the Song of Solomon compares the Church to a garden (4:12, 5:1); and aren’t we men supposed to love our wives as Christ loved the church (Eph5:25)?
God is the ultimate example: every unfruitful branch he cuts off and every fruitful branch he prunes, so that it can become even more fruitful. This is the same pattern that I am to follow in my family. It is my responsibility to help fix my wife’s negative qualities (does she have any?? I really don’t think she has any!) so that she can become a better Christian. It is my responsibility to encourage my wife’s positive qualities so that she can be more pleasing to God and a greater blessing to his kingdom.
If my wife wants to learn a foreign language, it is my duty to cultivate those things in her. If she wants to learn an instrument, I’m the one to help make that possible. If she wants to know more about the Bible—it is not the pastor’s job to teach her; it is my job (1Cor14:35). These things are not only my responsibility, but they are my pleasure!
Cheyanne and I have been reading through the Bible together, and every time that we come to a verse that stands out to us we write a note in the margin of our Bible with the date. I can’t wait to look back in a couple years and see all of the different things we have learned together! This isn’t some drudgery; it is fun to learn from God’s word with my wife!
If I am going to be a good husband, I must cultivate my wife into the woman that God wants her to be. So many times we expect our wives to be “helpmeets” (Gen2:18), but we do not take time to be their cultivators. If my wife grows into the woman that God wants her to be, and produces “fruits of righteousness” (2Cor9:10, Phil11), it is because I have taken the time to help her grow.
Gents, I haven’t been married long but let me tell you, it is a blessing to be married to a good wife (Prov18:22). The first time the word “husbandman” is used in the Bible it is in reference to Noah, who “planted a vineyard” and “drank of the wine, and was drunken” (Gen9:20-21). A good wife can be as intoxicating as a good wine. Every time Chy kisses me it is all tipsy-feeling, and it is the blessing of the Lord! But if I don’t cultivate my wife—if I become selfish, if I have unrealistic expectations, if I am rude—the wine of marriage can turn into sour grapes really quick! Bless your wife and use your marriage as an act of worship to God. Wine-ing with your wife in a godly marriage is much more fun than whining at your wife in an unhappy marriage.
Men, let’s be better husbands. Let’s follow our Father’s example, and start helping our wives become better Christians. We will bless them and honor God, and we will reap the sweet fruit of a happy marriage in the process!
Chy, thank you for being my wife! You are my best friend, and your love has made me a better man. I’m so glad that God gave you to me to live life with, and I can’t wait to see the harvest he has for us.