Day 2 – The Law of Love by Tosin Ayo“Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church and gave himself for it” – (Ephesians 5:25)
“Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord” (Ephesians 5:22).
“The law of love states that a man shall truly love his wife with all his heart as much as he loves himself and even more, as unto the love of Christ to the church that He died for it, treat her with respect, care about her feelings and give more love to her even when she is undeserving of it and his spouse shall reciprocate with willful submission unto her own husband!”
Love is the fundamental basis of any successful union! Two cannot walk together unless they agree and no one willfully agrees with the one he doesn’t love! Show me a fruitful union and I will show you a loving couple.
In my desire to know the scriptural mandate for couples to birth a fruitful and most blissful union and for each component part of the pair to know his or her role to avoid consistent conflicting overlap of functions, I discovered that man’s primary role as a husband was to love his wife and a wife’s primary role is submission in everything to her husband as stated in the Scripture above.
This admonition got me thinking that why were men told to love their wives, but women were not told to love their husbands but implored to respect their husbands instead- the answer is simple! This is because men are creatures of respect as logical, egoistic beings who crave respect better than love whilst women being predominantly emotional creatures are desirous of love! We only crave what we do not have and instructed by scriptures to do that which we might naturally not want to do!
Respect is to a man what affectionate attention is to a woman! Women do not need to be beseeched to love their husbands- they are naturally wired to be sick of love and would love their men all the same! The Scripture documented the consequences of man’s fall in the Garden of Eden to include that a woman’s love and desire will be with her own husband and he would perpetually rule over her as her Lord and master, thus, irrespective of what a woman wants to do, she finds herself still loving her man. Men ride on this to manipulate women’s feelings. Honestly, a woman only needs to show respect- man’s greatest unconscious need, as excessive emotional familiarity is capable of bringing contempt!
Hear this- A man is a woman’s ‘senior’ partner in a marital union based on the ‘Christ-church’ scriptural relationship description- He is her head, Lord and master- wives who do not subscribe to this belief (treating it as archaic) which is the underlying principle of marital union the way it was created are doomed to have matrimonial accidents! A good and respectful woman shouldn’t have issues with this because a woman’s husband ordinarily shouldn’t be her age mate, but older, she should respect him even If he is not older than her. This respect is however reciprocal. Modern women who do not subscribe to this notion of respect and submission soon become emotional casualties based on their western assumption that a man is their equal partner in a marital relationship forgetting unwittingly that marriage is a creation of Biblical statutory ordination, not a mere asinine conjecture of western civilisation inclination!
Husbands on the other hand were admonished by scripture to love their wives- this is because loving is not only naturally alien to a man’s DNA, but because love is an action verbiage word that requires constancy, consistency and willful consciousness. A man must constantly keep the fire of love burning to have a successful marriage. Men often want more. It takes love and loyalty to consistently love the same woman all your life as a man. It is a tall order and a luxurious surplusage that many men cannot afford.
Many men are by nature, straight-jacketed, sometimes hurtful, insensitive, orderly, end-seeking, excitable, impatient, rules-breaking, respect-craving, formless and firm. The way men see coitus as sex whereas women see it as love-making is conclusive proof of the assertion that women crave love better than men! This is why a woman talked out of her robes in bed at the edge of ‘action’ will still ask a man If he truly loves her before allowing him entry into her wet land of bliss- this makes it easier for her to give herself away- what is she expecting the purely horny man to say? That he doesn’t? An erect manhood has no conscience. This is also why romance is more important to the woman than sex! A woman is interested in cuddling, sentiments, sweet nothings, necking and enabling mood whereas the icing on the cake for the man is to enter the place and deposit for relief. His end justifies the means.
But I digress, the non-negotiable food of man is respect and he only trades his respect (ego) for true love! Thus, any man not willing to trade his ego (respect) for the currency of love is not ready to marry! Man must however be ready to sacrifice his ego most times in order to preserve his relationship and marriage. Problem usually occurs in every home when men desire to reap forceful undeserving respect from their wives without first planting the seeds of love, affection, care, attention (financial, sexual, emotional and time). Respect is never meant to be demanded; it must be earned by responsibility and love! The consequence of love is respect and vice versa.
Another name for man is ‘ego’ and another name for woman is ‘love’! Sow a seed of love in your wife and reap the harvest of respect! On the other hand thou husbands, sell the commodity of hatred, indifference and insensitivity and be paid with the currency of disrespect! Give your woman attitude and she will process it for you.
I am yet to see a wife that is shown constant love (care, attention-emotional, financial and sexual, happiness) who spews out anger, bitterness, infidelity, ‘nagginghood’, disrespect and peacelessness except of course the insane woman! The problem that often occurs is that husbands desire respect (commitment, obedience, submission and reverence) without first giving the offering of love, care attention- emotional, financial, sexual and quality time!
One solution I have found to most emotional breakdowns and marital strains orchestrated by unruly wives is love! If love fails, try more love! It weakens the bounds of bitterness and frustrates the defence of guilt. One is loved because one is loved, no reason for love in marriage! The reason of love is love. Afterall Christ died for all men (sinners, atheists and those he doesn’t even know. The same way a man should continually show love to his wife irrespective of what she does or doesn’t do! No one continually fights anyone who has given up the fight! This is the obedience to the law of love conundrum.
The law of love which compels Husbands to love their wives cannot be over-stressed. It presupposes that a man should make his wife his priority and love her as much as he loves himself If not more as both of them are parts of the same flesh- one soul in two bodies! A man who truly loves his wife will never lay a finger on her- that’s beating himself! I can’t imagine myself laying my fist on my wife – It can never happen. When a husband puts his wife first above everything and everyone except God, it gives his wife the often lost sense of belonging, sense of security, pride of honour that every disgruntled and dissatisfied wife hungers for!
Your wife shouldn’t just feel like she is the number one woman in your life, she must feel like she is the only woman in the world and in your world! If you make your woman happy and proud, go to bed a happy man, don’t forget women are processors. You cannot fully own a woman who doesn’t feel like she fully owns you! When you fully obey the law of love, it is practically impossible to end up with a nagging, cheating, uncommitted, brutish, hellish and uncooperating wife or a failed marriage! Give hatred and get disrespect, disgrace, live matrimonial atrocity and infidelity- it is that simple!
This charge of wifely love to us men consists in a strong and cordial affection for them; in a real delight and pleasure in them; in showing respect, and doing honour to them; in seeking their contentment, satisfaction, and pleasure; in a quiet, constant, and comfortable dwelling with them; in providing all things necessary for them; in protecting them from all injuries and abuses; in concealing their faults, and covering their infirmities; in entertaining the best opinion of their persons and actions; and in endeavouring to promote their spiritual good and welfare: this love ought to be hearty and sincere, and not feigned and selfish; it should be shown in private, as well as in public: it should be chaste and single, constant and perpetual; it should exceed that which is bore to neighbours, or even to parents, and should be equal to that which a man bears to himself; though not so as to hinder, and break in upon love to God and Christ.
There are so many reasons why husbands should love their wives; they are given to be helps unto you; they are your companions; they are your wives of covenant; they are your own wives, yea, your own bodies, your own flesh, nay, as yourselves; they are your image and your glory; and especially the example of Christ, in his love to his church and his sacrificial giving of himself for her.
Nothing is nicer for a wife than having a husband who appreciates her in the smallest things, accepts her in times of hardship, comforts her when she is feeling low, down and troubled, loves her no matter what and is simply happy for having her in his life. Behind every happy wife is a supportive husband. Wives who have the real deal can’t stop talking about it, same as abused wives who get the raw deal.
Every husband should learn how to say kind words to his wife and husbands must consciously appreciate every good thing they see in them- this is how to show love. Appreciate them for who they are and tell them how amazing they look irrespective of their stature and human frailties.
Don’t be a domestic judge and a professional critic! Instead of calling your overweight wife ‘fatty’, ‘fatyl acid’ because she is fat, why not call her ‘sexy Fatima’? Buy her a video on body fitness, buy her slimming tea and coffee, take her jogging every morning or help work on her diet.
Hear me Mister, If your wife is bad, big, unhealthy, unmanageable and imperfect, its your fault! Admit it! Your wife is a witch? You are a wizard! She is ugly? You are to blame for making such a distasteful marital choice and leaving her the way you found her! You have failed in your statutory responsibilities of grooming, cultivating and nurturing your bride! A man is an ingenious reflection of his woman and vice versa. Adam created the Eve he desired from the Eve he was given by God- make yours! Appreciate the good in your women and train them on areas for improvement, what happens to accepting her the way she is, where change is impossible?
Choose to encourage your wives based on their strength and not frustrate them based on their weaknesses! Stop being an unpaid cynic, avoid condemning and judging your spouses unfairly- that’s not your statutory role, choose to correct in love as many times as possible, remember no man is born perfect. You don’t want to know how imperfect you are as you can’t see yourself as people see you, but your wife has chosen to love and respect you all the same and refrain from injuring your over bloated frail ego.
Husband and wife should not stop appreciating themselves, over-familiarity should not replace expression of love in action and words. Ask yourself- when was the last time I genuinely told and showered my wife with love, affection, sweetly kind words and good gifts? When last did I tell her I love her? Is it so hard to say or do? Your wife is neither a witch nor a mind reader- how would she know how you feel unless you tell and show her! If she relates with God by faith, it’s unfair to equally relate with you by faith- Do something physical and touching, you are human, you are not a ghost. If you are too shy and proud to say it to her face, kindly back her and say ‘I love you baby’! You won’t die.
Deep within the African man, he genuinely loves his wife, but he is too proud, ‘African’, paternalistic, unromantic, occupied, busy, straight-minded and regimented to say or show it! Dear Nigerian husbands, you are too stiff. You are the Pharaoh and King of Persia in your own home, the mighty terrible one and the terrifying warlord to your children and wife. Calm down. Be romantic, play love, fool around. Let your wife touch your bia bia.
You can’t be truly African in psyche in the discharge of your ‘husbandorial’ functions- you are either a happily married man or a true African in mentality and display of love- you cannot be both! Men showcase love by assumption, not by consumption- their marrying a woman to them is conclusive proof of their presumed affection but a woman needs to hear it and hear it often for reassurance. This is what men do to their wives thinking its enough that they married them. You are doing nobody a favour by marrying them. Men do love, but saying it in words and showing it in action to your wives that you love them matter to them more than you just feeling it within you. Love like an unexpressed idea has no form in which it can be perceived unless you spill it through expression! Care is the true expression of love! Love without expression leads to depression. An unexpressed love is sheer hypocrisy.
Hear me, often times, what a man says is more important than what he does when he’s trying to get a woman in the mood. Remember that offering compliments is usually a sure-fire way of making someone want to get closer to you although, if the compliments come across as insincere, they will actually turn her off. Men however, often get women by their words, but often lose them by their actions.
Dear husbands, you must be able to differentiate between loving and flattering. Paint your wives in glowing compliments, don’t flatter them! Its unloving. The word ‘flatter’ means to compliment insincerely, you don’t say insincere words to others if you love them. ‘Flattery is a form of hatred and it wounds cruelly’- Proverbs 26:28. Love, don’t just flatter.
Shatter and scatter your woman with love and she will perpetually reside in your shelter with undivided loyalty. Your wife can distinguish between sincere compliments and flattery. Don’t do it. Love is kind, bears no grudges and tolerates. May God grant us the enabling grace to obey the law of love in order to experience blissful marriages on earth. God bless your marriages.
(The ‘word bank’).
Image – Tosin Ayo and his beautiful wife.