The Excellent Wife: Chapters 3 & 4

I’ve been reading through The Excellent Wife, and I now understand why this book is a highly recommended resources for wives. I’ve been learning so much; and I’m so excited to be able to share it with you. This week we’re diving into chapters 3 & 4.

Chapter 3: A Wife’s Understanding of Sin

I’m in complete agreement with the fact that all have sinned and fallen short of God’s standard. I am a sinner, as are you. No matter how hard we try, as long as we live, we’ll be prone to sin. In this chapter, the author reminds us that sin cannot be hidden from God and a price has to be paid for our sins.

But a price has been paid. Jesus took my sins on Himself. He paid the price for my sins on the cross. And because of His sacrifice, I’m forgiven and free of the sins I’ve committed. I’ve done nothing to deserve this forgiveness. None of us can do anything to deserve complete pardon of our sins.

“The fact is that no one can be kind enough or good enough to merit God’s gift of salvation.”

But what we can do, is repent, accept Christ’s forgiveness and try (with God’s help) to live a life pleasing to Him.

Well, all that’s good; but what does this have to do with our marriages? According to this verse, we should strive to forgive others (especially our husbands) just as God has forgiven us. That means, the next time my husband inadvertently offends me, I have to forgive him; no matter how unfair it may seem. [Note: I’m not talking about physical or verbal abuse here. If you’re being abused by your husband, you should seek help.]

“Christians should graciously accept the forgiveness that they have in Christ and graciously bestow forgiveness upon their spouses.”

The second half of this chapter deals with the “put off” – “put on” dynamic. It explains how we can put off a self-honoring thought and put on a God-honoring thought. The book has a tabular column to help us recognize and replace our wrong, sinful thoughts with right, godly thoughts.

The next time I feel I can’t take the pressure any more, I will be reminded that God won’t allow things into my life that I can’t handle. And when I feel my husband should be more romantic towards me, I should remember that love does not seek its own way.

Chapter 4: A Wife’s Understanding of Relationships

“Only in Christ can the relationship of a husband and wife be godly, good, and righteously intimate.”

My husband and I have experienced (over and over again), that when our individual relationships with God are intact, our marriage blossoms. But when we’ve been inconsistent in our relationship with God, it shows on our marriage.

This chapter explains how God designed relationships to be. In order to improve our marriages, we must try to emulate Jesus and start living for Him, rather than for ourselves. Our focus in marriage must shift from “What can I get out of this?” to “What can I give?”.

Well, that is a hard pill to swallow. My selfish nature refuses to do something for my husband without expecting anything in return. And when I do something for him, I expect my work to be recognized and appreciated. But I know God expects me to serve my husband without expecting anything in return. That would be true love; that’s the kind of wife I want to be. A wife who seeks to please God by serving her husband. Obviously, I’ve got a long way to go :).

Come back next week to read about the next two chapters. So now, it’s your turn to share… How has God been teaching you to be an excellent wife?

Other posts in this series:

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