A prostitute sat at the entry to the city to ensnare a certain passer by. The certain passer by was Judah and the prostitute wasn't just any prostitute, she was Judah's daughter-in-law, Tamar. Tamar was successful and when Judah saw her, thinking she was a prostitute "He went over to her by the roadside and said, 'Come now, let me sleep with you.'"
If we read between the lines we could quite easily get the impression that this was something that Judah was known to do. Tamar knew that she could trap him that way and Judah did not seem to have any hesitation in sleeping with a prostitute. It may not have seemed like a life changing event to him at the time. It was to be one night of pleasure and then he could go away and forget about it. But not this time. His quick decision was a life changing decision and it changed the whole course of history. That one moment of pleasure left him with results that he would not have chosen.
The lesson for us is a simple one. Let us always consider the long term repercussions of any action we take. Would we want to be caught in a compromising situation as Judah was? What could happen if we go through with our action? Will we regret our action or will we be proud of it later on? Let us not take our actions lightly but consider them and make godly decisions.
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Husbands, in the same way, be considerate as you live with your wives.
1 Peter 3 v 7
"What will she think If I start asking her about how our marriage is going?" Twenty years on and never having asked the searching marriage questions, how do we start? It feels so unnatural. It's embarrassing. She's going to wonder what is wrong with me, with our marriage, or who stole the man she married and who is this imposter standing in front of her?
After a recent Marriage Moment, someone commented to me that asking his wife if he was showing love to her was a good idea, but so hard to do since he hadn't asked anything like that in the past 30 years. I know what he means. I felt the same way when we first started talking about our relationship. So here are a few ideas:
If it is too hard to bring up in a normal conversation, try making it an Occasion. Take her out for dinner with the promise of great conversation, or bring her flowers, or treat her to a special event. Make the whole thing a time she will remember.
You could try being humble: "I've never asked you this before, but I know I should have. I love you and I want to be the best husband I can be for you. So how can I show my love to you more?"
What about printing out the appropriate Marriage Moment (like the one from last time), sharing it with your wife and then discussing it from there?
Another suggestion is to ask some other men for how they have broached the subject with their wives. If they haven't done it themselves, then make a dare or a challenge that by the time you next meet, you will all have had that deep and meaningful conversation with your wives. Then you can compare notes.
Or book your wife and yourself into a marriage retreat and take the openings they give you to talk with each other.
Of course, one of the things that can put us off asking for self improvement advice from our wives, is that within the next two and a half minutes to a lifetime, we will be given a list of improvements to make a mile long! Where to start? After listening patiently until she has finished, ask her what her top two ideas are so that you can start to work on them over the next while. One thing at a time.
A note to wives who have read this far: It can be hard for your husband to talk about relationships, so be gentle on him. Encourage him and help him feel at ease. If he can succeed now, he will have the confidence to try again later.
You can do it - and she will love you for it!