October 27, 2014
I’m pretty sure when God created my husband he used His best stuff. My husband is a man full of patience and wisdom and he has the kindest heart of anyone I’ve ever met. Today I asked him to share some of that wisdom with us regarding his view on marriage and money and how he’s led us through this area of our life. This is something nearly all couples struggle with at one point or another. In our years of ministry together we’ve heard it over and over from couples of all ages and stages of marriage. God’s Word has a lot to say about it, and if handled well, it can change the course of your marriage.
Thanks for sharing with us, Christopher and thanks for leading our marriage so well.
Cheese. It can bring people together or tear them apart.
Heather and I had been married for just over a week. We had just returned from our honeymoon and were settling into our new life together in California…and we needed groceries.
As the man of the house I figured that I should accompany my new bride on this grocery shopping trip and “help her.” Everything seemed to be going fine until we stood in the dairy aisle reviewing the cheese options.
Heather: Here we go (handing me a small block of cheddar cheese).
Me: Whoa honey. Do you see the price per ounce difference between your selection and this one (I held up a footlong brick of processed cheese slices).
Heather: That processed cheese is nasty. It’s not healthy and it would take us 5 months to use it all up.
Me: Let me show you some math. The cheese you picked out is from special cows that are hand massaged and live in barns that are nicer than our apartment. That’s why they can charge so much.
Heather: That’s ridiculous. We are not getting that massive chunk of gross plastic tasting cheese.
Me: Well if you didn’t notice we just got married and don’t have the money to buy your fancy cheese every week. I’m trying to keep us on our budget. That’s my job. We should be fiscally responsible and get the best value.
So…..we purchased her cheese selection and I have never gone grocery shopping with her since.
It’s a funny story and we laugh at it now but I think it points to a bigger theme in this amazing thing God calls marriage. That theme is the amazing balance and beauty that can truly happen when we as husbands and wives can TRUST each other and allow each other to use the gifts that God has given each of us to dominate our world and win at life and marriage.
Yes, I believe that the husband is head of his household (Ephesians 5) BUT that position comes with an enormous responsibility and a selfless attitude of always putting his wife first.
The best leaders create a culture of identifying and developing other strong leaders in their organization by allowing them to run in their own lanes and use their gifts. Then they will GET OUT OF THEIR WAY. The best leaders trust their team. The best leaders surround themselves with people that are better than themselves because they know the organization will be better off for it.
As a leader in his marriage a husband should utilize all the gifts that his wife has to offer. Don’t limit her. Let her run in her lane. Let her lead in her area of expertise. And then you, as a husband, run in the lanes that God has gifted you. If you both can see and appreciate each other’s gifts instead of butting heads and see that God created you to compliment each other, then your marriage and family will have a chance to be dynamic world-changers.
Yes, absolutely have a budget. Communicate. Talk about it TOGETHER. Decide TOGETHER. Then determine who has what gifts and what responsibilities and GET OUT OF EACH OTHERS WAY.
To use a football analogy… sometimes you will carry the ball and other times it will be your spouse. Your responsibility is not only to cheer them on, but to block the opponent, creating a clear lane for them to run in. That is true marriage. That is true teamwork. That is what good leaders do — they lay down the block and give up themselves for the sake of the team.
Thank God that I am not responsible for decorating our home or making the meals. We would probably end up with some sort of hunk of raw meat on the table each night with a side of Ramen noodles. Our home would be plain and empty and would not have the warmth and beauty that it has now.
I let Heather run in her lane. I cheer her on and I block for her. She does the same for me. When we win in life we celebrate together. We are not perfect, but we communicate and we review the game tape on both wins and losses to see how we can be a better team.
Now I’m going to go check out the fridge to see if there is any of that good cheese in there….