Jesus spelled out our standard in the Sermon on the Mount: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” (Luke 6:31)
Confucius taught a similar principle: “Never impose on others what you would not choose for yourself.”
As did Buddha: “What is hateful to you, don’t do to others; what is delightful to you, do for others, too.”
And Muhammad: “Seek for mankind that of which you are desirous for yourself.”
In fact, every major religion promotes some version of The Golden Rule.
In marriage it boils down to this:
“Treat your spouse the way you wish to be treated.”
- Would you like for your husband to be patient and understanding? Then extend an extra measure of patience and understanding towards him. (Ephesians 4:2)
- Do you want him to honor you as a respected colleague? Then be faithful and deliberate in the way you communicate respect to him. (1 Peter 2:17)
- Do you hope he’ll be quick to forgive and forget when you’ve done something to offend him? Then don’t harbor grudges against him. Give no place to bitterness or resentment in your heart. (Ephesians 4:32)
- Would you like for him to show appreciation for the many things you do to make his life more pleasant? Then always make a point to say thank you to him. Cultivate an attitude of gratitude, and don’t take your man for granted. (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
- Do you prefer kind, encouraging words over angry tirades? Then remain positive and upbeat yourself and resist the urge to nag or quarrel. (Proverbs 15:1)
- Do you want him to prioritize things that are important to you? Then don’t make excuses to avoid what’s important to him. (Philippians 2:3-4)
- Would you like for him to take notice of you and compliment your appearance? Then show him the same courtesy. Admire him and praise his manliness. Your husband wants to know that you still find him attractive. (Song of Solomon 1:16)
So that’s the key: Treat your spouse as you wish to be treated if you want a built-to-last, happily-ever-after sort of marriage.