Understanding the Different Roles of Husband and Wife
March 21, 2020
Recently, I had a conversation with my husband about the stress he saw that I may have. I took some time to think and the very next morning he asked me to check our planner about a dinner invitation we had received. After I told him what time would work for us, he immediately communicated a time that I had just said we could not do. So, I asked him why he asked me if he already had made a decision? He told me what he thought and that showed me that he did not take my response to him into consideration.
I bet you can imagine what happened next...I told him that was exactly one of the reasons why I was feeling stress. I shared with him how recently he had the same kind of habit, making his own decisions without consider the responsibilities that we had. He was not remembering our role as husband and wife or as of parents to our children. What do the assigned responsibilities as husband and wife and parents of children mean? During the conversations we had, the Holy Spirit shined light into those areas.
"Husband" or "Father" means that you are the head of the family. You lead the way and build the foundation. That means that you demonstrate the value of the family you also determine what the family's value are. You are also a leader, helping each family member along the path as they grow. You are the rock of the family, just like Jesus, our Lord is the rock on which the church is built. You reflect the image of our Father in heaven as a protector, a provider, and a person who we can trust and rely on.
"Wife" and "Mother" means that you are an assistant, a good helper for the family's head along the way. But, don't forget that you also have a primary duty as well; the keeper of the home. You keep all of the details concerning the needs of the children, you manage the home, and you must maintain a balance between the time spent with your husband and with your children.
When my husband had asked that morning about the dinner request, the reason I told him we could not attend the dinner at that time was because we should have quality dinner time as family, at home with our children. In his thought process, he believe that we still had enough time to finish out meal as family and then go to the meeting. But, as mother, I was considering the quality if time we spent as a family at the dining table. That meant given our children enough time to finish their meal and also talk together about our day. I believe this difference in thinking illustrates a very common thing that happens in most families. The husband and wife each have a different angle when looking at situations. This is especially true when a husband and wife become a father and mother and their responsibilities and duties begin to increase and come more quickly.
However, when we become a mother that does not mean that we are no longer a wife. We can never move our husband to second place behind our children. We should always recognize him as the head and we should always should seek to serve him and place him first just as we do unto the Lord. And, it is the same for the husband. The husband should love the wife like Jesus loves the church. He must continue to care for and consider his wife, even before his children. Family must begin with husband and wife and then children, and all the family must be built upon the foundation is Christ. If the father’s primary task is to be a good leader of the family, then the mother is the one to take good effort to follow through in caring for the family.
So, what can help us when we find ourselves in this common situation? I have learned that we must know the roles and responsibilities of both father and mother. We must take time to open eyes and ears to observe, making effort to understand, and consider the perspectives of our spouse as they do their work and carry out their role in the family. And, one of the most important things is that we spend good time to communicate. As Jesus said, His disciples must deny themselves and take up their cross. (Matthew 16:24) In a same way, a healthy and loving family does not just happen by a prayer, it requires real effort and work.