A husband needs to ask himself a question at the start of every day.
Am I going to be a real man or just an old fool?
If you care about your wife, you will serve her. And if you want your sons to care about theirs, you will make sure that they see you serving their mother. Being a husband and father means being a leader. But leaders, at least the good ones, don’t sit around on the couch barking orders from on high about someone bringing them another glass of tea.
Real leaders serve.
But it goes deeper than that.
Any old fool can wash the dishes or fold laundry for his wife. It’s what’s happening inside, on the heart level, that separates the men from the old fools.
When the Bible tells husbands to love their wives like Christ loves the church, it’s not giving us some secret man code for a fast track to a better sex life.
The following verse is not in the Bible.
“Washeth thou the dishes for thou wife. You’ll thanketh me for it later. Trust me on this fellas.”
That’s because service that always comes with these sorts of expectations is not love.
Real love is more than just a husband doing a chore for his wife. Real love is a husband serving his wife and being happy about it. Real love, instead of getting up to do the dishes with a moan and a nasty comment, finds joy in sacrificing comfort for the good of another.
Here’s a verse that really is in the Bible.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Corinthians 13:7 (ESV)
So fellas, remember, any old fool can wash the dishes. Machines can wash dishes. Dogs can wash dishes. But a husband who takes the Bible seriously and who really loves his wife will wash the dishes and be delighted that his wife is taking a nap while he does it.
An old fool will ask himself, “When do I get my nap?” while he scrubs away in alleged service to his wife.
An old fool will always expect something in return for his efforts.
A godly husband, one that looks like Jesus, will consider it an honor to faithfully represent his Master while working for the good of his bride. For him, the joy that comes along with the privilege of being able to serve is all the reward that’s needed. Any thing else is extra.
Each new day brings with it millions of opportunities. For the husband, there are opportunities to be an old fool who just sits on the couch or maybe even washes a few dishes and there are opportunities to be a real man who leads and serves for the good of his family and for the glory of God.
Husbands, each new day the question is put before us. Will we be old fools or will we be men?
The answer can only be found in our hearts.