I know there are many issues that arise in many marriages and I'd like to take the time and briefly address, not the problems, but the basic instructions that God has given us in order to examine our own marriages and perhaps adjust our behavior and allow the Lord to adjust our hearts. There are just too many problems within marriages to address them all and then provide biblical solutions. I'd rather spend my time pointing to the solution and allow the Lord to reveal what is specifically not right in your relationship and then trust in Him to help you get aligned with His Word.
1 Peter 3:7 (ESV) - "Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered."
God gives the command to husbands: "Live with your wives in an understanding way"
Can we just get one thing out of the way? Can we agree that this is a command and not a suggestion. I remember someone telling me that "delayed obedience is disobedience", and I believe that is true. To know to do what's right and not do it is sin (missing the mark). Emotions and feelings that are hindering you from living with your wife in an understanding way is not strength but weakness. Humility and meekness is a spiritual strength that many don't have the guts to practice. Many would rather make every attempt to hold a personal hurt over someone else in order to make them "pay for the hurt they brought on them".
This is something that is seen in the world, outside the Christian home, but unfortunately I've seen it too many times within Christian marriages as well.
#1) To LIVE with your wife is NOT to simply share the same address where you sleep and eat occasionally. To live, or to DWELL with your wife describes an intimate sharing of life.
To DWELL with each other involves communication (dialogue), working together through issues, making decisions together, considering the other above ourselves, listening as well as speaking, understanding the needs of your wife and seeking to meet those needs (I didn't say all of her desires and dreams but actual needs of love and companionship and demonstrations that she is your one and only).
Many people joke about how a woman is impossible to understand.
There is one joke that starts out with a man walking on the beach on a sunny California day. He came upon a bottle in the sand and as he picked it up a genie popped out and tells him, "Thank you for letting me out of the bottle. For your kindness I will grant you one wish." The man thought about it and then asked the genie to make him a highway to Hawaii since he was afraid of flying. The genie gave the man all the reasons why his wish was just too much, it was too involving of much material and it was just not something he wanted to do.
The man took a few moments to think about what else he would like and then it dawned on him and said, "I want to know what makes a woman tick. How she thinks and what she means when she says one thing, but actually wants something else. I just want to understand a woman."
The genie paused and then said, "Do you want the highway to be two lanes or four lanes?" LOL!!!
It is NOT impossible to live with understanding with our wives or else the Lord would not have commanded us to do so. Men! It takes work! Are you willing to seek to understand first and be understood second? Are you willing to humble yourself and get your nose out of social media and hobbies and other things if they are hindering you gaining a better understanding of your wife? Are you truly enjoying a fellowship type of relationship with your wife, or is she just your "partner" in life like a fellow "worker" is?
To dwell with your wife with understanding requires a conscientious and deliberate effort. This requires paying attention and studying your wife. Knowing what makes her laugh and what makes her cry; what encourages her, and what discourages her; what brings her joy and what makes her sad.
Here's the FIRST thing to do men: Learn to DWELL with your wife and UNDERSTAND her (tip: you're not to think of your own needs but hers)
Just one other verse before you think and pray on this: Acts 20:35 - "… Remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how He himself said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive'".