A recent headline screamed:
'Third Of Americans Admit Ending A Relationship Over Household Chores'
The story found its way to all forms of social media, including Facebook. Within hours, husbands all across America were posting responses like,
“This is proof men should not help with household chores.”
“Husbands not doing housework is the way God intended it!”.
I imagine many unappreciated and overworked wives who read the article felt a little more discouraged. Discouraged because like their husbands they, too, work a 40-hour-a-week job outside the home.
But unlike their husbands, they work a second job, spending another 20-25 hours a week in the home caring for children, cooking meals, and cleaning the house. All the while, their husband comes home, sits in his recliner while flipping channels, and asks, “What’s for dinner?”.
This picture is WRONG, and husbands need to understand why.
So what about the new study claiming that husbands who help with home chores are more likely to divorce their wives?
THAT’S NOT WHAT the STUDY SAID!
Some Truths About the Study
*Nowhere in this article does it say husbands who do chores are more likely to end their marriage. Nowhere!
The people surveyed were identified as either adults currently living with a romantic partner, a roommate, or family member. Therefore, the study did not survey married couples, per se, but adults living in the same house together. The survey referred to these people as “roommates.”
What the Study Found:
Despite the sensational headline, only three of every ten people surveyed in this story had ever ended a relationship due to conflict over chores. This means the majority of people (70%, or 7 of every 10) have never ended a relationship over disagreements over household chores.
Of the 3/10 who did leave a relationship we don’t know how many of these people, if any, were married. The 3/10 may have been college roommates sharing an apartment, young adults still living with their parents, or romantic partners living together. Likely a combination of all.
Truth: Marriage Should Be Different!
What is it that allows married couples to weather the disappointments of marriage, including housework matters? COMMITMENT.
There should be a huge difference in the level of relationship commitment between married couples and unmarried couples living together.
Marriages are sealed with wedding vows made solemnly to God, our spouse, and a gathering of close family, friends, and witnesses.
These vows ‘seal’ our commitment to one another and only infidelity should break our vows (see Matthew 19:9)
A married couple who would end a marriage over household chores has problems far more serious than taking out the trash.
A husband could not be more wrong than to tell his wife that him doing chores will hurt their marriage. The key here is love – agape love.
Christians are to have agape love for all people, especially our spouse. Agape love always seeks the greater good of another person. We should always want to lighten our loved one's load and be of service to them.
Remember the words of 1 Peter 3:7:
“In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered.” (nlt)
Message to Wives
Wives, if your husband would threaten to leave you because he has to help with the housework, he is a man of great spiritual immaturity. He does not understand Christ-like true love for another person, and this is the real threat to your marriage.
Forgive his selfishness and immaturity and PRAY for him. Pray that God will convict him of his self-centeredness. Pray that he will grow spiritually and learn what godly, sacrificial love looks like.
Take the high road (as you are likely very accustomed to doing) and set a proper example for him. Read 1 Peter 3:1-2 daily.
“In the same way, you wives should be willing to serve your husbands. Then, even those who have refused to accept God’s teaching will be persuaded to believe because of the way you live. You will not need to say anything. 2 Your husbands will see the pure lives that you live with respect for God.” (erv)
We must be careful about believing sensational headlines. All truth is God’s truth. Any article, book, TV show that contradicts the teachings of the New Testament is false and must be rejected.
God instructs husbands in this way:
“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” (Ephesians 5:25, niv).
For the Family,
dr. bill walker
Before You Go
Thank you for reading this article.
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