God cherishes marriage, so naturally the enemy wants to attack and destroy families. I have a whole post coming on how I truly believe one of the BEST ways to be a great parent is to be a GREAT spouse.
I’m sure no one enters into marriage thinking they or their spouse would ever ‘cheat.’ Unfortunately we live in a highly sexualized culture today, and that coupled with the fact the sanctity of marriage and the covenant does not hold as much worth as it did years ago means that adultery is even more common. No one is immune to the temptation- not even Christians- so we cannot let our walls down and must make a point to protect our marriages. There is so much destruction in relationships and families because of adultery, so we want to guard our families from that type of devastation.
Sometimes it roots back to selfishness. One of the spouses does not feel like their needs are being met are so they attempt to find someone else to “meet their needs.” (It’s the 80/20 principle I discussed in the Godly wife post.) Other times is starts as something ‘innocent,’ which is again why we must be so cautious when it comes to guarding our hearts and marriages. Sometimes it has to do with insecurity. Or a lack of self-control.
Obviously I am not in any authority to teach a man, so this post is geared to what women can do to protect their marriages. (Men have a huge role in this too of course, but again, this is what wives can do to protect their marriages.) I know I am also extremely conservative in my views and beliefs, and that is OKAY by me. You can see where all the leniency has taken us in the past few decades, and that’s not somewhere I want to go with my family.
First and foremost, I believe PRAYER is foundational. Daily prayer. Cover yourself, your marriage, your husband, and your family in prayer. Pray God’s Word over your marriage, and pray for a hedge of protection from the enemy, lustful desires, and temptations.
Second, I believe you have to be extremely cautious about what you allow in your home. I am talking most specifically about entertainment choices here. Would you let an unmarried couple have sex on your couch? If not, then you probably shouldn’t watch t.v. shows or movies portraying the same thing. We have become desensitized to some sins (particularly sexual ones) in our society, while still very judgmental of other sins. That is not okay. We all fall short of the glory of God, but the WORD is our measure and should be our standard. The way we (Jonathan & I) personally choose the standard for what we allow into our home is simple. We follow this one simple rule (question really). “Would I be okay if Jesus came back in this very moment?” As a Christian, our ultimate goal is to bring God glory through our lives, so it is simply a question of whether or not it brings God glory. If not, we shouldn’t allow any part of it in our homes. End of story.
- If you work outside the home: There should be no man (not even your boss) that you respect more than your husband. Talk about your husband often (never anything negative) and never be alone with another man for any reason in a private environment (car, lunch, office, etc.) Dress modestly and appropriately. (Consider how you would want other women to dress around your husband.) Keep your priorities in order. God, family, career. Don’t allow those to get out of balance. If your career demands more of you (your time, attention, best efforts, etc.) than you are able to give your husband, it is probably time to find something new (even if it’s good money).
- If you stay home or work from home: Watch out for being idle. Being a stay at home mom is no joke. It’s one of the toughest (yet most REWARDING and FULFILLING)
“jobs” callings I have ever had. Honestly, I feel like I have less time now than I did when I worked. BUT, I am also extremely active in our home. I prepare lots of healthy, homemade meals for our family. (Fo real y’all, it takes a ton of time, but I consider that time I am working for the Lord.) I am always cleaning or organizing something. I make an effort to take meals to others when they are in need. I lead Bible studies for women at church and in our home. I work out. And when Jase is awake, I spend a lot of time playing with and teaching him. I am extremely passionate about homemaking (post to come on that too). That is a daily choice though. I could choose to lay outside and tan, read celebrity gossip magazines, watch reality tv, and spend time gossiping with friends on the phone or via text. That does not bring God glory. (Note: Not trying to act holier than thou or like I’m perfect. FARRRRR from it, actually. However, I have had some awesome mentors and I read a lot of books about this topic so I want to share what I have learned. I still make lots of mistakes every day and have to ask for forgiveness more than I’d like.)
Here are a few other things you can do:
- Pray for a hedge of protection around your husband and your marriage. Pray he will not lust.
- Never go to bed angry.
- Recognize that you are not immune to the temptations and make an effort to guard your marriage.
- Make an effort to meet your husband’s needs.
- Enjoy sex. It is designed to be pleasurable (WITHIN THE MARRIAGE BED). Men are born with more testosterone and need sex more than a woman, so do not use it as a tool of manipulation.
- Have a rule that neither of you are ever to be alone with someone of the opposite sex.
- Invest in your own marriage. Make it a point to focus on your hubby’s strengths.
- Saturate your mind with the Word. Start your morning with a Bible study or devotion.
- Do not engage in inappropriate relationships, conversations, etc.
- Apply the Golden Rule in your marriage. If you wouldn’t be okay with your husband doing it, don’t do it.
- Communicate. If another woman (or man)is making you feel uncomfortable, let your husband know. Ask him to address it while you are present.
- Avoid alcohol. It just seems that more poor decisions are made when people are drinking because judgment is altered.
- Take care of yourself. I’m not saying you have to look like a super model, but put some effort into your physical appearance. Men are visual.
- You’re never going to be perfect, so don’t try to be. But, you sure can make your home an oasis. Make him LOVE coming home and sad to leave.
- Respect him. I will make SURE that there is no woman who ever respects my husband, shows him more attention, affection, or respect, than ME.
- Serve him. One thing I like to do that is really simple (I learned this from watching my own mama) is to make Jonathan’s plate. He has never asked me to do this. He doesn’t expect me to do it. And he is perfectly capable of doing it himself. But I LIKE to feel like I am serving both him and the Lord, while honoring them both, through this small action. **I feel like I should clarify that I don’t ALWAYS do that. Sometimes he gets on my nerves and I don’t, or I’m busy with the baby and I don’t. Ain’t nobody claiming to be perfect little Betty Crocker/June Cleaver over here.
Bottom line- You reap what you sow. What kind of seeds are your sowing into your marriage and for your family? I am more cautious now about my sin nature than ever before because I know Jase (& future kiddos) will be affected by the consequences of my choices, thoughts, and actions. I try to be the kind of wife I want my sons to marry some day, and the kind of wife I want my daughters to be. When you joined with your husband in marriage, you became ONE flesh. One, to the point that if you are ever separated, it will damage both of you. Guard your marriage. Fight for it. Protect it.
Here are a few Scriptures about adultery:
He who commits adultery lacks sense; he who does it destroys himself. –Proverbs 6:32
But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. –Matthew 5:28
Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous.- Hebrews 13:4
Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.- 1 Corinthians 6:18
To preserve you from the evil woman, from the smooth tongue of the adulteress. Do not desire her beauty in your heart, and do not let her capture you with her eyelashes; for the price of a prostitute is only a loaf of bread, but a married woman hunts down a precious life. Can a man carry fire next to his chest and his clothes not be burned? Or can one walk on hot coals and his feet not be scorched? –Proverbs 6:24-29
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. – 1 Corinthians 10:13
“You shall not commit adultery.- Exodus 20:14 (One of the 10 commandments)