(Pro 21:9) Better to dwell in a corner of a housetop, than in a house shared with a contentious woman.
What a picture this verse is of a henpecked husband. He enjoys being up in the corner of an attic to get away from his wife’s constant badgering! And did you know this verse is also repeated in the book Proverbs in various ways? (Pro 19:13; 21:19, 25:24, 27:15) It’s the subject of sitcoms and comic strips, but unfortunately it is also an issue in many a marriage today. How should a wife treat her husband when he deserves a browbeating? Will nagging really motivate him for change? What does the Bible say about how to treat your husband?
Let’s talk first about why women nag. It’s because they are so frustrated with their husbands that they succumb to persistent faultfinding and pesky and non-stop suggestions. They’re so fed up and they just fight back by this abusive and demeaning behavior that just becomes a part of them. But what does nagging really accomplish? It lowers a man’s self worth. He either retreats or he just puts up with it and takes the path of least resistance just to keep the peace. There’s got to be a better way! Here are some things to think about.
RESPECT: A man’s number one need is respect. (Eph 5:33) . . . let the wife see that she respects her husband. But what if a wife doesn’t respect her husband anymore? The Bible says to respect him anyway! You might despise his behavior and neglect of duties, but ask the Lord for help to appeal to his sense of respectability, even when there is no apparent trace of it.
PRAY: Tell the Lord about your agitations with your husband. Ask Him for strength to build your man up and not tear him down. (Eph 4:29) Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.
DON’T COMPARE: Men despise it when their wives compare them to other men. It would be like a husband comparing his wife’s looks to other women. God gave you the man you were supposed to have and He is working on your character in relation to your husband. (Gal 5:22-23) Other men have their faults; so don’t idealize any of them as knights in shining armor. (Rom 3:23)
NAG TO HAG: Do you want to be really beautiful? Then start nurturing a gentle and quiet spirit (1 Pet 3:1-6). All that nagging turns a woman into an ugly creature, whereas God wants you to glow for Him! Jezebel nagged her husband king Ahab and look where it led her (1 Kin 21; 2 Kin 9). Abigail chose to love and respect her dishonorable husband Nabal until his death and it won the attention and overtures of king David (1 Sam 25).
Be your husband’s inspiration, or you’ll have to go looking for him in the attic!
Louie (I’m so blessed to have a virtuous wife and not a nagging one!)