In the context of marriage, opinions differ with regards to the loving mix between partners.
For those of you who don’t know (which is a probably majority of you reading this post) The ‘Loving Mix’ is a phrase I coined. It attempts to come up with a measure/ratio/percentage or whatever of the love that is to be shared between couples. It tries to answer questions such as, should a husband love his wife more? And if so what is the ratio of the love split between the couple? Is it 60/40, 70/30 80/20 95/5 should It be 50/50 or should the wife love her husband more?
People have diverse views on this topic and I find that these views are primarily shaped by experience and the gender of the person expressing the view. For example a typical woman would expect her husband to love her more, a typical man would expect his wife to love him more, a guy or girl who has been in a relationship where he/she loved their partner more and got hurt would be reluctant to put themselves in that situation again and this would ultimately shape their view towards the ‘Love Mix’ in future relationships. Sometimes these opinions and views are based on what we have been told by people (parents, teachers, pastors etc.)
Bu what does the bible say about this? Interestingly in the context of marriage the bible tells the wives to submit to their husbands not love. (Eph 5:22) to submit is to give over or yield to the power or authority of another. People submit because of different reasons (Fear, Respect, Pity, Love etc.) The most reflexive form of submission is realized only through love. It was because of love that Jesus ‘submitted’ himself to die for our sins. So for a wife to perform optimally she has to submit as a result of Love. Love is a choice for a woman in marriage, submission is not.
With regards to the men (husbands), the bible explicitly tells the husband to love his wife (Eph 5:25), this sheds some light on the ‘Loving Mix’, while Love is not mandated to wives; it is a necessity for a husband. That blend of submission from the wife and love from the husband is the fiber that successful marriages are built on. So the answer to the question, who should love who more in a marriage is actually quite straightforward. The husband!!
Now let’s throw some light on how deep a love we are talking about. The church is referred to as the bride of Christ right? His wife, but who makes up this bride? It’s us; folks like I and you, (basically every believer), so Christ is married to us. Now ask yourself this, as a bride of Christ what is the greatest show of love that Christ gave you. You guessed it, his death for our sins. Self-sacrifice is the ultimate and realest form of love and that is the type of love Christ wants us to show our wives, Self-sacrificing love isn’t 50/50, or 60/40 or 70/30 its 100% absolute.
It’s easier said than done, making a commitment to love someone of the opposite sex is probably one of the hardest things that you will ever do, I mean from a fundamental point of view there is a huge difference in disposition between the two sex’s and that alone is already working against you, you realize just how difficult it is to love someone and how much of Gods guidance you need to achieve a great marriage unit.
Luckily Jesus, who is the greatest husband (to his bride the church), showed us how to show love when he died for the sins of those who hated him. He was willing to sacrifice himself for love, Real Love for his bride, (We were not even married to Christ then).
So there you have it guys! If we want to be great husbands, this is the mode of operation we have to function with, that being said. You need the sacrificial love of Christ in you to be able to love your wife self sacrificially. Have you got it? You can’t give what you don’t have.