What I really think about Ben.....
I must tell you that while all of these feeling are genuine and true, there are some other things that I thought valid to share, how I really feel about Ben. Let's just say this is a full disclosure blog post. :) Don't worry Mom, keeping it clean! hehe!
This is my view of my marriage to Ben: I am desperately in love with my Husband... I believe most wives are, or should be. I truly feel completely whole when I am with him. I would love to spend 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with him. I hate for him to walk out the door without me. I can't explain the hole it leaves in my heart when he goes to work, or any other place he goes without me. He is a constant source of accountability for me, and I tend to work best when he is here. Plus he is not bad to look at :) No, seriously... He is a hottie! (he loves that i tell you all that)
I am forever desiring to work on our relationship, hone it, and not take a day for granted. You never know what tomorrow will bring and I would rather Ben know exactly how I feel about him, than not :) All that said, we have our struggles, we do have 5 kids, and a revolving door of emotions running through this house at any given moment, (not just my little girls people... lets be honest here i am an emotional nightmare at times)
My view of marriage is likely not far off of many of your views of marriage, nor is it much different than how Christ loves the Church. With that in mind, I truly believe that I am to be a help to my husband. In Genesis God outlines His reasoning for sending Eve..
Then the Lord God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him"
This passage states quite clearly that my responsibility as wife is "helper" The term helper or helpmate may be difficult for some to take in this day and age. The term "suitable helper" (as it is also translated) may sound harsh to some. The term helper may be seen as "assistant" or any number of other words, but generally speaking it is someone who does the work that the boss won't or can't do. I think most women who hear this description would be uninterested. But this is only the worlds opinion of "helper" Gods definition is a bit different...
I will lift up my eyes to the mountains; from where shall my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
God is the maker of Heaven and Earth... MY HELP! If God is called helper, than I should commit it a privilege to be a helper to Ben.
Another verse that strikes me is:
1 Corinthians 11:9
For indeed the man was not created for the woman's sake, but the woman for the man's sake.
OK, I know this may sound harsh, but here is my perspective. God created me out of a need that Ben had. Now, that is not to say that I am secondary or created as an afterthought. NO! God had a specific purpose for me. My support and help to Ben is essential to his success! God saw me as a great need for Ben, and fulfilled that need by making me. I was created specifically for Ben!! God knew that Ben needed someone custom made to help him be and do what he can't be and do by himself. Such a humbling thought if you really think about it.
So, the question then is "How can I be an effective helper?" I understand that God created me with a special purpose, but how can I fulfill that purpose?
Titus 2:4-5 Gives us a peek into the role of wife, Paul is speaking to older women here of their duties to the younger women.
Titus 2:4-5 ...so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.
There are some highlights here that I was challenged by.
Love Ben. Well of course! We all know that we are supposed to love our husbands. My love for Ben is a responsibility rooted back in Genesis 2. To love Ben is to be his helper. It is also encouragement, admiration, focus, attention and acceptance. These are some of the ways I truly express love to Ben. I find so much joy in our marriage in these things. He likes to hear me appreciate him.
Proverbs 15:23 - A man has joy in an apt answer. And how delightful is a timely word!
Proverbs 3:27 Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due...
I love being Ben's biggest fan. People may forever and incessantly tease me about how I go on about how cute, and giddy Ben makes me. But honestly, he is certainly the cutest most handsome guy out there, and I am not ashamed to tell you just how "hot" he is! I pour myself into loving Ben by encouraging, admiring, focusing, attending, and accepting Ben daily. It is a divine responsibility that God has given to me as his wife. Do I love all of his funny quirks? OK.... I do. Do I love how he giggles during arguments? OK.... that one burns a bit, but as I think on it, it is one of the things I enjoy about him :) His humor! Maybe not in the moment, but you get it. :)
He is truly my greatest earthly joy. I count it an absolute privilege to be his biggest fan. I do not want to hinder him, as that would result in his relationship with Christ to be hindered.
Proverbs 12:4 says "An excellent wife is the crown of her husband, but she who shames him is like rottenness in his bones"
I really desire to be Ben's help, not hindrance.
While all of this lies at the core of who I desire to be to Ben and who I believe God wants me to be, I also love the random mundane things about him. I have written about my husband many times on this blog, and on his 32nd Birthday I chronicled my favorite things about him.... Here are a few that are still at the top of my list in this his 37th year, and our 17th wedding anniversary:
1. Ben loves me how I am and who I am. I need not change anything to make him happy. What a gift he is to me!
2. Ben loves to tinker. Over the years this has become more and more apparent. Working on cars, rebuilding tractors, building furniture, etc. I love his hard working hands! Seriously.... I LOVE the callouses, and greasy fingernails. :)
2. Ben is seriously sweet with words. He could woo me with 2 words! For real! His letter writing when we were dating was amazing! I have a whole box of letters, (nothing like the written word ladies) and I cherish them!
3. Ben has a reddish tint to his hair and beard, with a few speckles of grey dotting it now, seriously.... sooo handsome!
4. Ben loves pumpkin pie and raspberries. I have made him a pumpkin pie from an actual pumpkin, and raspberry jelly, not jam folks... jelly! With all the seeds stained out! Took me 5 hours to make 6 pints, but it stands out as one of my favorite things that I have done for him :) It was sooo good!
5. Ben is a servant. He would do just about anything for anyone, anytime, anywhere.
6. Ben is an excellent Dad. He is very patient. He never hesitates in letting out kids "work" with him. He is more than willing to let them attempt their own project, even if it involves paint or mud. :)
7. Ben is a human garbage disposal, which I share with you affectionately :) He will eat anything, and I mean anything, that I place in front of him.
8. Ben's Granny Annie called him Benny..... it makes me tear up just typing that! We miss Granny so much, and she was THE ONLY person who would get away with calling him Benny.... Don't even try it :)
9. Ben is an excellent tradesman. He can woodwork, weld and just about anything to do with a construction site. He once told me he has poured more concrete than I have walked on! hehe! If you had seen some of his jobsites, you would know that he is speaking truth!
10. Ben has 5 sisters and 1 brother. You would think that this would prepare him for his own 4 daughters trek into their teen years.... you would be wrong :)
He can tell you how old his siblings are, but can't remember when their Birthdays are. He mixes them all up! I won't even try with our 42 nieces and nephews! I love a large family.... it's so homey!
11. Ben loves coffee. Plain black coffee, from a coffee stained mug he won't wash because "you lose all the goody!"
12. Ben impresses me daily in his efforts to live a Christ centered life, desiring to know a grow in the word, and lead his family in that way. We still struggle and fail at times, but this last 2 years of our life has made us to be a more Christ centered family. It's been difficult at times, and I know it will continue to be, but being led by my excellent husband of 17 years, gives me the courage to go on another day. :) Seriously, so much has changed in us in 17 years. In a lot of ways we are a completely different couple! In a powerfully amazing Father-led way!! I can't wait for the next 17 years!
So, this is what I really think of Ben. To be perfectly honest, I struggle with making Ben an idol in my life.... There I said it. I have shared that nugget of guilt with 1, maybe 2 people.... EVER! I have struggled with this since we started dating and have been too ashamed and nervous to speak of it. My fear is that God will take away my idol. Nobody wants a world without Ben Berberich! Am I right? But, I have accepted the fact that that is Gods choice, not mine. I need to fork over my idol worship of my Husband and embrace my worship of Christ. He loves my with a greater passion and desire than I could fathom on an earthly level. While I am head over heels with Ben, it is nothing in comparison to how head over heels HE is for me. Perspective people..... perspective.
My kids should never come above Ben, and Ben should never come above my Savior. Never, ever, ever...
One of my absolute favorite passages over these last 2 1/2 years is
For this reason I bow my knees before the Father from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of His glory He may grant you to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith-that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work in us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen
This is how my Father loves. The love of Christ surpasses knowledge. If I can love Ben in a fraction of the way that Christ loves me, well... I commit to doing my best here on earth. I love you Benjamin Charles Berberich. You are His gift and treasure to me!