Recall that Paul also said that husbands were to cherish their wives in Ephesians 5:29. The word “cherish” means to hold dear, to treat tenderly, to protect or to cling to. In other words, your wife is someone important in your life. Again, consider the treatment of your wife in light of how you would treat yourself. Would you call yourself derogatory names? Would you run yourself down in front of other people? Would you harm yourself? We understand that a person who engages in such practices is mentally ill. Yet, it is not right thinking for a husband to do the same thing to his wife.
The writer of Proverbs said that finding a wife is a good thing and a blessing from God (Proverbs 18:22). If a husband does not feel that way about his wife, he should not blame his wife. He should first look at himself and his attitude toward his wife.
Peter expressed it in this manner, “You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered” (I Peter 3:7). The phrase “someone weaker” is literally translated from the Greek as a “weaker vessel.” The point is not that women are more fragile than men or that they do not have as much muscle mass as their husbands. Peter is saying that a wife should be honored as you would hold dear a fine piece of china. If you inherited a delicate vase from your grandmother, you wouldn’t toss it in the dish water with the other plates from the dinner table. That vase would have a special place on the mantel. It would be handled with extreme care because it is valuable to you. In the same way, a husband is to value his wife. She is not a common everyday item which is easily replaced. She is a valuable part of your life. If she is a Christian, she stands equal to you before God. Her salvation should be important to you. So work at understanding your wife. Cherish who she is and see that God has blessed you richly.
Put your wife first in your commitments. There will be periods when commitments will limit your available time. Your wife will know this, but if you still find time for her – putting your commitments second – she will know that you truly cherish her.
Ease the load of burdens for her. Each of you have duties to perform, but take time to relieve her of some pressure, even if it is only once in a while. Help clean up a spill. Put that load of laundry into the dryer when she is busy getting dinner on the table.
Fill your speech with praises that build her up and limit those which tear her down. And don’t make her look or feel stupid by never considering her opinions and ideas. In all ways, show her that she is important to you.