Been talking marriage stuff with other couples recently. Some thoughts on spouse-speak:
- Husbands are called particularly to love. Wives called particularly to respect (Ephesians 5:33)
- In sin, spouses will speak the opposite of what their spouses need.
- Therefore in anger a husband's words will kill and a wife's will emasculate.
- The damage of harsh words is like thrusting a sword (Prov 12:18) - fast, sharp, devastating, wound-making
- The good of healing words is like planting a tree (Prov 15:4) - slow, deep, seemingly ineffectual but incredibly fruitful
When you add all this up you get husbands who fail to plant seeds in their wives because it looks so ineffectual. Wives then feel untouched by their husbands and in turn cool from them. Here you have a breeding ground for resentment that will build until the knives come out.
Instead we need to engage in the ongoing work of seed planting - "I love you." "I'm proud of you."
For more on men, women, words and planting seeds - these thoughts are always bouncing around my head on the issue.