A few months ago, I took the plunge and subscribed to a monthly box of new clothes. You may have heard of Stitch Fix. Well, it’s both wonderful to have clothes delivered to my door, but it’s also a bit more expensive than my typical wardrobe purchases. But I figured if I’m about to turn 40, I should invest in my clothes and find items I both like and will last. I don’t keep everything they send me, but the items I do keep, well, I’m diligently tending to them.
When I threw a load of laundry in the other day, I carefully read the tag on my new pair of jeans. The ones which cost me quite a bit more than a pair from Target or Old Navy. No way was I going to shrink designer jeans from one misstep in the mud room. “Lay flat to dry for best care,” said the inside label. So you better believe I draped these jeans over the dryer and waited a full 36 hours for them to dry. When something costs us a lot, and we know it requires specific care and attention in order to preserve it, we are diligent to properly tend to it.
Our marriages require a similar type of diligent attention. Let me explain. Because, I know it might seem strange to use diligent in reference to being a wife. Why diligence? Why not say faithful, loving, or trustworthy? I started to use diligence when I came across Deuteronomy 4:9. The Lord called his people to “keep their souls diligently” so they wouldn’t forget his commands when they entered the Promised Land. God required commitment and affection from his people, but he knew their hearts were prone to wander. So, he demanded diligent preservation of their souls.
The Hebrew word used in this passage carries with a sense of urgency and forcefulness; something is at stake. Solomon uses the ant to help us understand diligence. They store up food in the summer so in they can survive in winter. Their livelihood is at stake. What’s at stake with my jeans? Well, their size and shape could become distorted if I don’t care for them well.
So, when we talk about being a diligent wife we’re recognizing our marriages are at stake. Without attention, care, sacrifice, and love our marriages will suffer.
Now, I realize it could feel like I’m putting a lot of pressure on us as wives. I assure you, I’m not. By God’s grace, our husbands will also embrace diligence, and if—or when—they don’t, we can trust God to give us wisdom and strength. But I’m not responsible for my husband. I can’t change him or insist on his diligent participation in our marriage.
What can I do? As much as it depends upon me, I can fulfill my calling as a wife.
If you are a wife, God has placed you in this role. He understands what’s at stake. And he’s diligently preserving you. He’s faithful to sustain you and make you more like Christ. So, let’s trust him to do his work. And let’s join him in this endeavor to guard, protect, and preserve our marriages.
This is Day 2 of a 31 Days Series: A Diligent Wife. You can find all posts in the series here.