There’s something to be said for inviting others into our homes, but when it comes down to it, we have to be intentional about first offering hospitality to those who are closest to us. When we do that, our “external” welcome is more genuine, and we invest in the family relationships that make us stronger and better equipped to create welcome for others. If we’re married, that means offering hospitality to husbands. It might seem a silly concept, but the truth is that for many women, the home is our primary domain and we may spend a lot more time in it than our husbands. It’s also really easy to get busy focusing on everyone else, and forget that even our strong men need us to show them value and honor at home. I’m so thankful Bailey from The Thin Place shared ideas to help us practically show hospitality to our husbands.
As Christians, we understand the importance of stewarding our homes and resources. Although it is a constant struggle to implement, we understand that our homes are not our own and are that we are called to serve others but, often, we find the end of this thinking when we reach our husbands.
Because we are partners in life, we tend to limit border-crossing hospitality so that it doesn’t even reach to the person on the other side of the bed. But if we are taking seriously the charge from Christ to love our neighbors as ourselves, we need to show our husband’s the hospitality that we would want extended to ourselves.
This looks a lot like sacrifice and death to self. In many wedding ceremonies, there is a moment when the bride and groom symbolically unite themselves and extinguish their previous lives apart from each other in the form of unity candles or sand. Thus, we recognize that who we are once we take those vows is different from the person we were when we walked down the aisle.
I’d like to suggest that, in many ways, the person we were dies in that moment. For me and many brides, I literally changed my name to reflect my new marriage. This is a mutual act of surrender to embrace the new life we forge with our spouses as one person.
But unlike what society and years of “happily ever after” fairy tales would have us believe, the is union is not primarily about our happiness. Instead of a self-centered view of marriage, God has instilled a God-centered union in which sanctification, the process of being transformed into the likeness of Christ, is the goal.
So in my life, hospitality looked a lot like death to my selfishness in exchange for giving life to my husband. Instead of griping over the way the dishwasher was loaded, I saw a deep need to extend grace. Instead of assuming tone in a text message, I learned to assume good intentions and to remember that, at the end of the day, we are marching towards the same goal together.
(Here are ways we can show hospitality to our husbands.)
Extend Hospitality to His Friends
As a very introverted introvert, I don’t need much social time and I detest small talk. That makes it very draining for me to have people into our home who I do not know well, certainly for long periods of time. On the opposite side of the spectrum is my incredibly extroverted husband. I always idealized our talks of hospitality when we were engaged and didn’t realize the, often draining, evenings and weekends I was committing myself to.
When we got married, I quickly recoiled from having people over in defense of my home. But mercifully, God nudged my heart to follow my husband’s lead in opening our doors. By doing this, I surrendered the idea that we were living in my house and allowed my husband to feel like he was an equal in what happened in our house.
Value His Contributions to our Home
Maybe I am the only controlling wife in the world, but I have a feeling I’m not alone. A few months into our marriage, I realized that I was griping over a lot of things that were non-essentials but that I had made points of contention. How the dishwasher was loaded, the way towels were folded, it didn’t matter. But there I was, policing and even re-doing my husband’s work as if the linen closet police were going to be there to inspect our towels any moment.
But I’m pretty sure that, at the end of our lives, we will look back and not care if we had towels folded two different ways in the closet. I am confident that we will look back and remember how I made my husband feel and how nasty I looked when I nagged him to do things my way.
If I’m going to show hospitality to my husband, I need to value what he is doing to make sure our home runs smoothly. I need to recognize clearly what matters, what doesn’t, and when I need to let go of control.
Keep Honest Communication Open
Just because I’m not nagging, doesn’t mean I cannot make my preferences known. Opening up communication and recognizing that some conversations might be difficult and might challenge you is one way to show your husband you value his place in your home.
For my husband and I, this looked like grabbing two cheap journals at Target and asking each other the same questions every week. We would review how we supported or didn’t support each other in the previous week, ask what we could do to love one another in the week ahead, and bring up anything that was bothering us.
Sometimes, this looked like long, difficult conversations on Sunday nights over misunderstandings in the previous week. But often, this was simply a 5-10 minute conversation that opened the line of communication so that we both felt free to communicate our needs in the week ahead.
Let us press on together to build marriages that are honoring to God. May we offer up our lives and marriages to the Lord, trusting that He will take our humble efforts and multiply them into a picture of Christ and His Bride, the Church.
After a fun chat together on Facebook Live, Bailey and I both created printable resources to start using to invest in your marriage today. I created a printable with seven (more) ways you can create welcome for your husband – you can get it by subscribing to Everyday Welcome (see below).
Love this resource? Bailey has a wonderful weekly check-in printable as part of a full resource library with other printables and study helps that you can access here for free with a subscription to her (super encouraging) newsletter. (Subscribe here.)
Other posts she’s written to encourage you in marriage:
How do you stay in touch with, and create welcome for, your husband?
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