More women than you might think feel that their husbands hate them. And in most cases, it’s not true.
The problem is that their husband doesn’t understand a very basic biblical principle that I call the cleaving principle.
Genesis chapter 2 verse 24
Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.
Let’s key in on that phrase, “hold fast to his wife.” The good old King James version words this a bit differently. Instead of saying that a man is to “hold fast” to his wife, it says a man is to “cleave to his wife.”
No, it has nothing to do with a meat cleaver… here’s what the dictionary says:
CLEAVE – to catch by pursuit: – follow close (hard after), be joined (together), keep (fast), overtake, pursue hard.
The word clearly implies a chase or a pursuit – a seeking after.
Do you remember those long gone days of courtship? Come on guys, you remember – showing off, trying to woo her, seeking to impress her. You did extra, special things for her (flowers, gifts, special notes or poems).
That is exactly the idea of the word “cleave.”
Ladies, can you recall those days? What did it do to you to know that the guy you were interested in was seeking after you? It was flattering, wasn’t it? Made you feel pretty special. When your growing intimacy and the passing of time came together on the day that he finally proposed, your hopes were realized! He really did want you! In many ways, it was his consistency that paid off!
Sadly, for many couples that’s about as long as it lasts, because men often stop chasing their wives shortly after they are married. It is as if once they “have” them, the excitement of the pursuit is gone. They lose sight of the beauty, caring heart, and loveliness that attracted them in the first place.
That’s where the cleaving principle comes in. There’s no hint in God’s word that you are to EVER stop pursuing your wife.
God’s instruction that you pursue your wife means that there is something in the pursuit, something that it communicates, that your wife needs to know. When you pursue her consistently, day after day, year after year, she knows in a very special way that you still love her, still delight in her, and still want to be with her above all others. When you fail to do so, she may start to believe that you don’t care about her, aren’t interested in her life, and might even prefer someone else. Yes, she may even be heard to say, “My husband hates me.”
Those kinds of doubts become a slow-poison to the relationship… and husband, you are responsible to see to it that those doubts are never injected into the marriage relationship in the first place! You need to develop (or re-kindle) a heart that consistently pursues your wife. Here are some ways of looking at this truth that may be helpful…
- Men tend to work at the relationship until it seems to be “in the bag” – then they get comfortable and take it for granted.
- But men, the relationship you have with your wife needs constant and continual attention and pursuit.
- Your wife not only desires for you to want and value her…she needs it.
- Doing this nourishes the deepest part of who she is as a woman – God made her to need those things and He made you to provide them!
- Remember that these types of needs are ones you agreed to meet when you married (remember those wedding vows?).
- With that in mind, it becomes an issue of being a man of your word.
- The same “desire” you had then, is to be stoked and kept alive throughout your married life.
Getting married was the first of many steps of consistent pursuit…[dropshadowbox align=”center” effect=”lifted-both” width=”350px” height=”” background_color=”#c1ecec” border_width=”1″ border_color=”#dddddd” inside_shadow=”false” ]It is your job, as the husband to “win her” again, and again, and again… to make sure that your wife not only never says, but never even THINKS, “My husband hates me.”[/dropshadowbox]