«Who can find a virtuous wife? For her worth is far above rubies. The heart of her husband safely trusts her; so, he will have no lack of gain» (Proverbs 31:10, 11).
Pastor Therlow J. Harper was one of my dearest teachers at Montemorelos Theological Seminary (Mexico). He had gained a lot of experience throughout his life of service to the Lord. But he was especially careful when he talked about topics related to the home: «Young people, three things are required for a good marriage: admiration, trust and respect.» Then, he began to give examples to illustrate his statements.
That formula appears in the description Proverbs 31:10, 11 makes of the virtuous woman. It’s true, a woman is a treasure to be properly admired. But men also need to be acknowledged, especially by their wives. They are both there to admire each other and that way find the strength to face life’s struggles. But, when admiration doesn’t exist, they run the risk of being admired by people outside the home, seriously endangering the family.
Trust is another essential factor for a couple. To trust is to place your best in someone else’s hands. It means being sure you have an ally to face daily battles. As human beings we have the need to trust others. But when there’s no trust in a romantic relationship, its future is not very promising. Also, when you trust other people more than your spouse (be it relatives, friends or workmates), you open the door to a serious problem of infidelity. A man who trusts more in another woman who is not his spouse could get in trouble with adultery. The same happens with women. Trust is crucial in the home.
Respect implies acknowledging the rights and freedoms of others, as well as their success and personal achievements. The husband of the woman mentioned in Proverbs 31 acknowledges that I Ms. thanks to his wife that he has abundant profits. Actually, to love is to respect. Many people try to depersonalize their spouse, so they’ll behave the way they want them to, seriously crushing their dignity. That’s not too far from insulting, humiliating and despising. Who likes a relationship like that?
Now that you are young, foster admiration, trust and respect toward your friends. When the time comes to have a romantic relationship, you’ll develop those virtues much more easily.
Ask the Lord today to help you live with others the best way possible.