“Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. Even so husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.” (Ephesians 5:25-28)
I used to think that this verse was the epitome of selfishness. What was Paul saying? That a man should think of his wife as his property? So, loving her would be the same as loving himself? I saw nothing “loving” about that!
However, after living with my husband, George, for the past three years, I understand this verse much differently. You see, I was diagnosed with severe osteoporosis after we were married–one of those “in sickness and in health” situations. When I chose to follow the natural path toward reversing my condition, George was completely supportive. And when I would get upset because of diet restrictions or get impatient for quicker results, George was a constant source of encouragement and comfort. Because of his love, he now has a healthier, stronger wife who loves him all the more for his protection and kindness.
I believe that this is what Paul meant when he said, “He who loves his wife loves himself.” It’s the boomerang effect! The love that George showered on me has borne fruit for both of us. We are both healthier as the result of our improved eating habits, and we look forward to many more happy years together.
Happy 3rd anniversary, my husband!