Respect and Honor: Two Important Ingredients

Marriage

There are two important ingredients to every marriage:  respect and honor.  But I’m afraid these are oftentimes considered antiquated elements in today’s society.

In a world where the focus is oftentimes self-centered, marriages can quickly disintegrate.  But with respect and honor becoming the focal point, many of the challenges could be easily dealt with or avoided altogether.

What does it mean to respect your spouse in marriage?  It means to respect their feelings.  If you know something in particular upsets your spouse, makes him or her angry or anxious, don’t do it.

It also means to respect their time.  Demanding that your spouse spend all of his or her free time with you is selfish.  On the other hand, not spending time with your spouse is selfish on the reverse end.

Respect means to consider your spouse’s needs before your own.  It is not a popular way of relating because so often it’s looked at negatively, as if you are making yourself a door mat.  There is a big difference between that and consideration for another.

What does it mean to honor your spouse?  It means to honor the vows made on your wedding day.  Just consider these words, “for richer or for poorer.”  It sounds good at the time but suddenly when a financial crisis hits, you may be looking for a way out.

Or how about “in sickness and in health.”  I can’t believe the number of stories I have heard where a spouse was left after they developed a severe illness such as cancer.  It was too much to take care of him or her.

Honor also means to keep things private when they should be, instead of telling everyone in sight about the woes of your marriage or all the things you hate about your spouse.  Some things should only be discussed behind closed doors.

I can’t help but wonder how many marriages might be salvaged if there was more respect and honor.