If there is one question that I have grappled with my much during our short marriage, is the question on How I am to Love my wife. Many amazing sermons and blogs have been written on this topic to try and explain how a man is meant to love his wife. Interestingly, everyone one has their own opinion and the methodology differs greatly.
When we started dating back in the year of our Lord, 2009, I would have swore on my mother’s grave, that I would/could not stop loving Gathoni. She was sweet, amazing, gentle & loving. I felt like I had won the jackpot every-time I thought of her. My entire life revolved around her. We spent every waking moment together, and when we were apart in the evenings, our fingers got sore from typing each other messages on ToGo. It was as if, some wizard had cast a spell on us, and forgotten the chant to undo it. We were two peas in the same pod. It was absolutely impossible for me to imagine life without Gathoni, loving her, was something as natural to me as taking a breath.
When we finally did get married, a lot of stuff changed. For one, it was now legal to go home together every evening, sleep in the same bed and hold hands in our evening walks. It was exciting, exhilarating to be precise.
Though, over time, there was a slow fade back to ordinary. The excitement dulled over time and the hustle and bustle of life took over. It reminded me of the Parable of the Sower, where Jesus tells us that some of the seed fell on rocky ground where the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choked it, making it unfruitful. That is precisely what happened to our young marriage. The pressures of urban living & pursuit of wealth, left us with a tasteless marriage.
Interestingly, ours was no unique story. This scenario got replayed in many marriages across the globe. It was no phenomena, in fact, it was the natural path of all relationships. One day, when we were talking with Gathoni over this, I made the off-hand comment that Marriage is the cemetery where love goes to die. I was the only one who laughed at that joke.
The Love PH Test
Love, is a sneaky little brute. Very elusive and extremely shy. Every time I thought, I had her, she slipped right through my fingers. In fact, all along in our marriage, I thought I was doing a pretty good job in the love department, not until I asked Gathoni for my score card!
I asked God often how would I know if I was loving Gathoni right? How much love was too much? or how little was too little. That is when God opened my eyes to one of my all time favourite bible verses; Prov 3:3
Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.
The Love PH test is what I call it. The best way to tell the amount of love in your marriage, is to look at your level of ‘Faithfulness’. Faithfulness was the PH test of Love. There can be no love without faithfulness. In fact, I could never claim to love Gathoni if I was not faithful to her. It did not matter how many doors I opened for her, how many flowers I bought her, romantic dinners I took her or holidays we took together. The bottom line was FAITHFULNESS. Faithfulness is the physical evidence of the presence of love in a marriage/relationship. I was shook!
I had never seen it in this light. All along I thought it was just normal to have a lapse of faithfulness once every while. The occasional glance at the girl walking by the street, the innocent pause on the scroll when I happened by a gorgeous human on my timeline or just the accidental stroll by the ‘red light districts’ on the interwebs.
That little unfaithfulness, God told me, was clear evidence of how little I loved my wife. The only way I could prove my deep love for my Gathoni was by my absolute faithfulness to her. That hit home, it hit home hard.
So How Can I Faithfully Love my Wife?
Just like most men, I tried my best to walk in faithfulness. Looking away and avoiding eye contacts, ignoring messages and smiling away compliments. Unfortunately, it was just a matter of time, before I found myself back to my old ways. No matter how hard I tried, I found myslef slipping back to that miry, slimy well of unfaithfulness.
God told me that the simple solution was to change my focus back to my wife.
He told me that I had one job, and one job only, TO LOVE MY WIFE & BE FAITHFUL TO HER. Unfortunately, my one job had been replaced by others I had given myself, e.g. the pressures of urban life and pursuit of wealth in the name of giving my family a better life. All these were good causes but not the main cause. The main cause was Gathoni, to dedicate the rest of my life to loving her, and through this faithfulness would result as a by-product.
So, my approach was what was wrong. I tried all my best to being faithful, while all along it was just a symptom of a deeper issue, lack of love. It was like treating the fever, while all along it was malaria that was ailing you. The fever was unfaithfulness, the malaria was lack of love. So God asked me to shift my focus, back to my wife. Like those early days before while we were dating as shown in the above picture.
To focus my days and spend my life in loving my wife was to be my only assignment. The rest, He assured me, (money, houses, lands, wealth) was His (The Lord’s) business to take care of. Not mine!
To God Be All Glory
I am a disciple of Christ, passionate about serving God’s purpose to my generation. I am a husband to Gathoni Kiruthi and together God has blessed us with 3 amazing children