When you study your wife’s life, you’ll begin to empathize with her. These two parts go hand in hand. It’s difficult to understand your wife’s feelings and actions if you don’t take a step back to study not only the situations in her life but also her soul.
What are her strengths? Her weaknesses? Where does she need you to pick her up and help her on? In what areas does she excel and how might you learn from her?
Wives aren’t merely add-ons. They’re gifts from God that help us grow and succeed. And because we as husbands are “one flesh” with our wives, when they speak to us based on their love and accumulated knowledge, they’re speaking to us as a part of us. It’s as if we were talking to ourselves with extremely wise words. We’d be wise to study their lives.
As we study and learn from our wives, we begin to respect them in a whole new way. The more we admire their gifts and the ways that they’re uniquely part of God’s design where we are not, the more we can tune our hearts toward understanding and empathy for them in all areas of our walk together.
If we husbands want to know our wives well, we need to develop empathy. How often do we do that? How often do we try to understand what it’s like to chase little children around all day? And seldom have another adult with whom to converse? And often have another job (or two) on top of taking care of the kids? And have a monthly physiological cycle that changes the body’s moods and perceptions? And perform all the other responsibilities that are expected of her?
If nothing else, the exercise of empathy helps a husband to develop a tender heart and a humble mind. It helps him develop a heart of compassion toward his wife and all women. It fights sexism and misogyny. It elevates all women in his eyes.
Above all, it honors his wife well.