As I heard this, I couldn't help but jot it down and come back to it. To me there is so much to be said here. This one verse speaks volumes to me so I will try to keep this post as short and sweet as possible. It will be a bit different than some of my posts before, but I had to share none-the-less.
Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers. 1 Peter 3:7
I will admit there have been times in my marriage where I haven't been very considerate. I am sure to this day I fail from time to time. I have learned though, what it looks like to really put an effort in.
One of the first things I notice as I read this passage is that it says "as you live with your wives." How often is it that we see husbands that don't actually live with their wives. Sure they sleep in the same house, do things together from time to time, eat the occasional meal together, but they aren't really living "with their wives." This is sad to me. I can honestly say I don't know that I would be in the same point of my walk with God if it hadn't been for my wife. I can look back over the last 10 years and see the things God has done, in-spite of my failures to make sure we had an opportunity to live together. While I don't think Peter was necessarily stressing this point as much as I have, I do think he chose his words carefully and put it in there for a reason.
The second thing I notice is how he says we have to treat our wives with respect as they are the weaker partner. Now I could go on and on about my views of how the whole feminist movement really destroyed our culture, but to keep it plain and simple, men and women are not equal. Woman can be as smart as men, work as hard as men, and just about anything else to look like they are equal to men, but they are not. We are on two different playing fields. I don't think Peter was belittling women as much as he was telling us to respect them for who God made them to be. We are not the same and God has given us both different roles to fulfill. (Unfortunately, those lines have been blurred, but that is a whole different topic) We are to respect our wife as she is our partner in life and God put them in our life to be with us.
The last thing I notice is that if we ignore our wives and don't respect them, our prayers to God will be hindered. While I have heard this before, I don't know that I have ever really realized it in my heart. I can look back over my life since I have been married and can pinpoint times when I know my relationship with God suffered because I wasn't able to have real communion with Him. My method of contact with Him was being hindered because of the way I was living my life. I too can say that I know my relationship is stronger with God when my attitude towards my wife is right.
This post might not be for everyone, but I know it is something that we as husbands need to consider. Personally I can see how it all ties into the tri-polar spirituality that has been weighing on my mind.
But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.
1 Timothy 1:5