Learning to honor your husband is quite possibly one of the hardest things you'll do as a wife. When I got married eight years ago, I was at the extreme disadvantage of having never been taught how to honor my husband.
I didn't have many examples of godly marriage at that point in my life. Most of everything I learned about honoring my husband and having a godly marriage came from books and podcasts.
In all of the reading, listening, and gleaning from older women I've done over the years, I've found there are five key ways to honor your husband.
1. Honor him with your words
Men thrive on encouragement. Take the chance to build him up whenever you can.
Say thank you, even for the mundane things. When your husband feels appreciated, he's more apt to do special things for you. Of course, that shouldn't be the reason behind building up your man, but it is a natural consequence of doing so!
Smile when you speak to him. You can hear happiness, love, and appreciation in someone's voice. Make sure you smile when you speak to him on the phone, it makes a difference.
Try not to complain at him. Yes, you might have had a rough day with the kids, but he doesn't need to hear about it as soon as he gets home. He gets enough grief and discontent at work, the last place he needs it is from his wife.
Remember, your face, tone of voice, and body language speak louder than words. He'll know if you're faking it. So in all dealings with your husband, be genuine.
2. Honor him with your deeds
What does it mean to honor your husband with your deeds? It means not doing things you know he wouldn't approve of. It means not spending money on frivolous or unnecessary things.
Ask him before making plans, even if you think he won't care. It's not so much getting permission as involving him. He's gone all day and would likely welcome some involvement in your regular day to day life.
Do what he asks, immediately, and with a smile. Yeah, that's a hard one. Because let's face it, we don't' always want to get up to turn on the fan, make him a sandwich, or run to the store. But trust me, his fondness for you will grow each time you willingly do what he asks.
3. Honor him with your home
Most of us have a hard time keeping the entire house clean every day, especially those of us with small children. But there is a way around that. Ask your husband what household chores matter most to him.
Find out if he'd rather the kitchen be clean or the floors are vacuumed. Sit down together and figure out what messes really grind his gears and which ones he doesn't care about.
For example, my husband doesn't care if the dishes are done or if the bathroom is a bit messy, but by golly, the floors need to be picked up when he gets home. He can't stand having to step over shoes, toys, and everything else the younger children pull out all day.
By finding out what matters most to him, you cut down on stress for both of you and your job is easier because you know exactly what he wants to see.
The ultimate goal here is to make him want to come home.
4. Honor him in front of others
This is a big one. Never, ever put down your husband to others. There is no undoing that. Once the vile words have left your lips, you can't take them back.
We all need to vent from time to time to our girlfriend, but don't let your husband be the source of your complaining.
Build him up, even when you don't feel like it because odds are whatever you're upset about will eventually pass. If you are around others, take every opportunity to speak well of your husband, brag on him a little bit. He'll love it.
Always speak lovingly of him to the children. Don't tarnish their view of their daddy. If your husband has truly done wrong things, they will realize it when they are older.
5. Honor him with prayer
Of course, we should be praying for our husbands, but do you pray for wisdom in making him happy and meeting his needs?
This has made a huge difference in my own marriage. When we make the shift from, “Lord, change him.” to “Lord, let me love him the way you love him. Help me to see him the way you see him.”, amazing things happen.
God can change your heart, which will change your thoughts, words, and actions.
Your willingness to admit your flaws and let the Lord mold you into the wife and mother you were created to be will bring amazing surprises in your life. Suddenly those irritating little things your husband does won't seem like such a big deal. You'll find yourself more willing, and even eager to please him.
And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. (Phillipians 1:6 ESV)
There's no doubt that learning to honor your husband will take time, especially if you weren't raised around good examples of godly marriages. But never think you can't do it. God has promised to see you through it all and teach you exactly how to be the honoring wife your husband needs.
Recommended reading list:
Marriage books we recommend
- Love & Respect: The Love She Most Desires; The Respect He Desperately Needs
- What Did You Expect?: Redeeming the Realities of Marriage
- Intended for Pleasure
- Ribbing Him Rightly 2ed
- Created to Be His Help Meet: Discover How God Can Make Your Marriage Glorious
- Created to Need a Help Meet: A Marriage Guide For Men
- The Five Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts
Marriage books by bloggers
- 31 Days to Build a Better Spouse by Ashley @ LIFE by Ashley Pichea
- Dear Wife: Letters from a Help Meet by Misty @ Beautiful Ashes
- Intentional Marriage: The Art of Loving Your Husband (A 31 Day Devotional) by Crystal @ Serving Joyfully
- The Ultimate Marriage Vow: 21 Days of a Life-Long Commitment by Darlene @ Time-Warp Wife
- To Love, Honor and Vacuum Audio Download by Sheila @ To Love, Honor and Vacuum