Last week, I talked about leading from my values and how that shapes my life in ministry. My first personal value is: “The God Life Is The Best Life”

This week, I’d like to discuss my second value. “My Wife Comes First”. As my wife she comes before all other human relationships. As her husband, I want to treasure, love, honor, lead and care for her as Jesus does for the church.

Like my first value, this seems like a no brainer, but I’m surprised how easy it is to let ministry to take priority over my wife. The late nights, long trips, long weekends and endless activities can easily overshadow my role as a husband. I don’t want my wife to become a functional widow, with an absent husband.

I feel like I’ve done a pretty good job of balancing my hours in ministry. My wife usually gets veto power for nights out and how many trips I take. My sin is usually in being absent emotionally. After a long day of teaching or meetings I can take the easy road of tuning out when I get home. I spend my energy connecting to students/parents/volunteers, but fail to be engaged with my wife when I am at home. This is where I fail to live according to my values. This is where I need accountability from her and others to be present with the one human relationship that will last all others. After all if I gain the whole world of ministry, yet lose my wife, what have I really gained?

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. (Ephesians 5:25, 28 NIV)