As a husband and follower of Christ, I’ve come to realize the profound significance of humility in marriage. It is not something that comes naturally, nor is it something I have mastered. None of the less humility is a powerful necessity for a healthy and strong marriage. Let’s explore this theme together, drawing insights from the Bible and our own experiences.
What Does the Bible Say About Humility?
Humility is a core teaching in the Bible, and it’s beautifully reflected in scriptures such as Philippians 2:3, which teaches us to “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility, value others above yourselves.” Proverbs 22:4 further emphasizes, “Humility is the fear of the Lord; its wages are riches and honor and life.” Proverbs 29:23 says “One’s pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.”
Clearly, God has a very high view of humility and a very low view of pride. Knowing this to be true, what should our heart posture toward humility be then?
In our marriage, Jennifer and I have learned that agreeing with God is an act of humility. It’s about saying, “God, you are right, and I’m wrong. You are right, and I need You to guide me to know what’s right in this situation.” This acknowledgment sets the tone for a humble heart in our relationship with God and our spouse.
The Power of Humility
Humility is more than a passive quality; it’s an active force that has shaped my marriage with Jennifer. Here’s how:
Unity: Walking in humility has allowed us to create a beautiful picture of unity. It fosters connection and understanding, allowing us to recognize our flaws and be humble about them with each other. Humility creates an atmosphere where we can draw near to each other. When one or both of us are being prideful, that pride only separates and creates distance. Pride never brings unity, only strife. A powerful way to show your humble heart is to initiate prayer with your spouse when you are in conflict. This shows them that your heart is not just finding resolution and peace but more so seeking God’s heart on the matter.
Safety: There’s safety in humility. Jennifer and I have found that when we both operate in humility, we create a safe space where we can openly share our feelings without fear of judgment or rejection. When we are humble, the other person knows that our hearts are with them and not against them. Humility also shows that we are willing to lay down our own way for the sake of the other. Safety in humility goes beyond mere comfort. It’s about creating an environment where both partners feel secure and valued. In our marriage, this safety has led to a deeper connection and understanding, allowing us to grow together in love and faith.
Humility in marriage is not an optional heart posture; it should be our default heart posture. It brings us closer to God and our spouse, fosters unity and love, and creates a safe space for growth and connection.
As Jennifer and I often pray, “Dear Lord, we are learning humility is freedom from pride. Without pride governing our hearts, we can have a modest and honest view of ourselves. Pride demands a pedestal position of authority, while humility offers a posture of submission and sacrifice.”
I encourage you to embrace humility in your marriage today. Reflect on the scriptures, pray together, and make a conscious effort to put your spouse’s needs above your own. Let humility be the standard in your relationship, leading you to a more fulfilling and God-centered marriage.
Remember, humility is not a sign of weakness; it’s a sign of strength and wisdom. It’s the key to a healthy and strong marriage that reflects the love and grace of Christ.
This article is based on the Marriage After God Podcast episode “Building Strong Marriages: The Role of Christian Community,”
Aaron and Jennifer Smith
Aaron and Jennifer Smith are the authors and founders of MarriageAfterGod.com. We are passionate about encouraging couples to set their eyes on God while boldly asking the question, “God, what can our marriage do for you?” In our books, we share personal stories of failure and victory from our own marriage while pointing to the wisdom in God’s Holy Word. We have been married for over 16 years and are raising five young children, and we are no strangers to the enemy’s attack on marriage. We hope to equip you to be prepared, inspired, and encouraged to live boldly, chasing after God’s purposes together. Ever since we got married, we have purposed to serve God and build His kingdom together. We blog, write books, and host a weekly podcast urging couples to say yes to God and to be used by God for His extraordinary purposes.