The male ego is surprisingly fragile, especially during times of failure and embarrassment. It’s one of the reasons why a husband desperately needs his wife’s support and respect.
Jane Hill clearly understood this aspect of a wife’s role. Over Jane’s objections, E. V. once invested his family’s scarce resources in the purchase of a service station. Jane opposed the decision because she knew that her husband lacked the time and expertise to oversee his investment. She was right; the station went broke. When E. V. called to say he’d lost the station, Jane could have said, “I told you so” and crushed his spirit. He could have been humiliated in that moment of vulnerability. Instead, she said, “If you smoked and drank, you would have lost as much as you lost in the service station. So it’s six in one hand and a half‐dozen in the other. Let’s forget it.”
A wife can “make” or “break” a man. If she believes in her husband and has confidence in his leadership, he typically gains the confidence he needs to take risks and use his assets wisely. But if she is competitive, critical, and disrespectful of her husband, she becomes a liability to the entire family. Read Ephesians 5:33 again. One of the most important keys to a successful marriage is found in a single word: respect!
Just between us…
- (wife) Do you feel that I believe in you?
- (wife) What do you think is the biggest setback or failure you’ve experienced? Did I show support at that time?
- (wife) How can I better show respect to you?
- From Night Light For Couples, by Dr. James & Shirley Dobson
- Copyright © 2000 by James Dobson, Inc. All rights reserved.