One Small Thing That Will Make a Big Difference in Your Marriage

Always speak respectfully of your spouse.

Relationships (including marriages) are built on trust. One of the key indicators of whether you can trust a person is how they speak of you when you’re not around.

Don’t you remember middle school? Your recall what it was like when a friend was blabbing on and on about somebody else and the thought occurred to you, “I wonder what he/she says when I’m not around?”

Whether it is at the gym, at coffee shops, or all other kinds of places I constantly hear people bagging on their spouse to somebody else. “He’s so disorganized.” “She’s a slob.” “Blah, blah, blah.”

At the moment that you’re ripping on your spouse to a friend for a cheap laugh or so that you can “vent,” you are communicating that your friend is more important to you than your spouse. You’re communicating that you are willing to throw the most important person in your life under the bus for your own selfish relief.

It dishonors your spouse and it dishonors Jesus, who commands husbands to love their wives and wives to respect their husbands. Both commands are unconditional.

Love and respect demands that you speak well of your spouse, especially when he/she is not around.

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  1. #1 by Shawna on January 6, 2011 - 12:16 pm

    This is a lesson I learned before I was even married. I read about this idea/fact in several books and during several talks about marriage as I was gearing up to become a man’s wife someday. I have seen what my words have done when I have spoken poorly of Dale and I have seen the blessing that comes to him when he is honored by me with my words. This is a VERY powerful lesson! Thanks for sharing.

  2. #2 by Tony on January 6, 2011 - 5:10 pm

    Great post!

  3. #3 by Howard Morrison on January 7, 2011 - 8:24 pm

    True, respect may be most tempted when not in our spouses presence, but I’ve found that a similar/power way of demonstrating respect is to commit to NEVER TEASE your spouse. Jana and I committed to this early on and by God’s grace we’ve achieved a significant degree of control over this. And when we fail, we are quick to confess it as sin and ask for forgiveness.

    Another very powerful principle is to speak very favorably and winsomely when not in their presence. It is amazing how often this eventallly comes around to them.and builds them up.

  4. #4 by Luke Simmons on January 9, 2011 - 4:32 pm

    Great insights, Howard. I’ve learned the hard way about not teasing Molly. Doesn’t take much for me to take it too far, and it’s best to just not go there.

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