As a husband, you have a scriptural mandate to provide a covering for your wife. But what should covering look like?
An important part of my role as Jenni’s husband is to be a “covering” for her – spiritually, emotionally, physically, and financially. It’s a responsibility every husband should take seriously, but what does it mean to provide a covering for our wives?
It may not be a popular notion, but I see a biblical mandate that is undeniable. Consider for a moment the famous passage for wives in Ephesians 5.
Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord.Ephesians 5:22
One interpretation of the Greek word hupotasso, which we typically see translated here as “submit,” is “to arrange oneself under.”
Three thoughts strike me about this passage.
- This is an entirely voluntary arrangement – something a wife chooses to do.
- She does so in a manner parallel to the way we all are to “arrange ourselves” under Christ (“as you do to the Lord”).
- In light of one and two, it is important for us husbands to understand how to walk out our “covering” responsibilities in a Christ-like fashion.
Cover, Don’t Smother
Jesus’s love covers but doesn’t smother us. His love covers our shortcoming with unconditional love and forgiveness. It provides and protects. It guards and guides. The Lord fights on our behalf and does all he can to see us walk in our true identity and calling. He doesn’t control or manipulate us. He invites us into partnership with him.
This is the kind of covering I want to be for my wife. This is the kind of covering called for by our mandate to love our wives “as Christ loved the church, and gave himself for her.”
I want to be like a comfortable sweater to Jenni, providing warmth and protection; not like a straightjacket: stifling, controlling, and restricting her freedom.
I want to be cover for her like a giant shade tree, providing a refreshing respite from the heat of her day, not a groundcover like a patch of weeds that tends to invade and take over everything, even where it doesn’t belong.
Covering Be Like…
Here are a few other metaphors to consider as you seek to cover your wife:
- Umbrella – provides her shelter from the storms and protection from the elements of life.
- Phone case – protects something of value that may be delicate or breakable. Your wrap-around love keeps her safe from harm.
- Pool cover – keeps stuff out that doesn’t belong.
- Book cover – protects something of value that you want to last but without restricting its use or movement.
- Bed covers – warm, inviting, and intimate
“I’ve Got You Covered“
Does your wife know that you are watching out for her and that you have her protection, safety and wellbeing at heart?
The important thing in this is to take your role as a cover for your bride seriously, to not neglect or run from this responsibility. Strive to cover her in a way that provides protection, refuge, comfort, and help without stifling, controlling, or interfering with your wife’s true nature and calling.