“Husbands, love your wives and do not be bitter towards them.” (Colossians 3:13)
I love my wife dearly. She is so very precious. And she is the very best gift that God has given to me on this earth, outside of my salvation. The above verse says we are to love our wives, and not be bitter towards them. We are to strengthen them. We are to pray for them and encourage them. We are to pray that their God-given potential would be realized. We are to pray that they would succeed in every way — and they will, if we do these things.
Husbands really have a lot to do with their wive’s success. There is so much at stake, really, in the relationship! It is a relationship designed to bring eternal rewards, as husband and wife see themselves as a team who can work together to impact this world for Christ! For this reason, both wives and husbands must be praying for one another, and asking God that their partner’s God-given potential would be realized. As they do so, rewards will come back on them.
Sometimes, a husband may develop a bitterness towards his wife. We know this is true because the word says “not” to be bitter towards them, and why would the word say this if this was not something that tended to occur in relationships? Satan really is the “provoker” in this sense — he may encourage men to be bitter towards their wives. However, God does not hold the blame on Satan in this regards, but charges us men all with the responsibility not to heed the ways of the devil. We are to “… be vigilant; because [our] adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.” (1 Peter 5:8). He will and does like to “get in the way” especially when it comes to relationships.
In my personal experience — as a man speaking — I have seen that my past sometimes gets in the way of my present relationship with my wife. I may develop a bitterness or a grudge which is based on “unresolved hurt” that I have been carrying around with me, from past relationships. Watch out! Satan loves to hinder present relationships with past, unresolved, problems. Healing may not be an instant thing, especially if the hurts are very deep. Nevertheless, God does heal, if we allow him to do so. He may heal “all at once,” or, in his wisdom, he may choose to take his time, as we learn to “walk in his ways.”
That’s why it is especially important to make sure (on a daily basis) that we are “right” before God, and before man. This will lead to a lasting, fulfilling, relationship with our spouse! And the two of you will be blessed with eternal blessings and rewards.
“See to it that no one fail to obtain the grace of God; that no “root of bitterness” spring up and cause trouble, and by it the many become defiled.” (Hebrews 12:15)
“Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” (Psalm 139:23-24)