Husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies.- Ephesians 5.28
Consider these two scenarios.
A man's older car begins having serious trouble, so he takes it to a mechanic. After an assessment is made, he is told it will need a complete overhaul, which would tax his limited budget. He determines to get rid of the car and spend his funds on a new vehicle.
Another man, an engineer, accidentally crushes his hand in a piece of equipment. He rushes to the hospital and has it x-rayed, finding numerous bones are broken. He willingly uses his savings to have it doctored and gingerly nurses it back to health.
The problem with our culture is that marriage is more often treated like the first scenario. When you relationship experiences difficulty, you're urged to dump your spouse for a "newer model" The truth is, marriage is more like the second scenario. You are a part of another. You would never cut off your hand if it was injured and would pay whatever you could afford for the best medical treatment possible. That's because your hand is priceless to you. It is part of who you are.
And so is your mate. Marriage is a beautiful mystery created by God, joining two lives together as one. This not only happens physically but spiritually and emotionally. Ephesians 5.28-29 says, "Husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself; for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it."
This verse speaks to husbands but notice how each member is viewed. They are both considered to be the same flesh. You must treat them with the same nurture and care that you treat yourself. When you show love to your spouse, you are showing love to yourself as well.
The flip side also applies. When you mistreat your spouse, you are also mistreating yourself. It's time to let love change your thinking. It's time for you to realize that your spouse is as much a part of you as your hand, your eye, or your heart.
Think about how you treat your spouses physical body. Do you cherish it as your own? Do you treat it with respect and tenderness? Do you take pleasure in who they are?
Don't let the culture around you determine the worth of your marriage. To compare it with something that can discarded or replaced is to dishonor God's purpose for it. It should be a picture of love between two imperfect people who choose to love each other regardless.
What need does your spouse have that you could meet today? Can you run an errand? Give a back rub or foot massage? Is there housework you could help with? Choose a gesture that says, "I cherish you" and do it with a smile.