He who loves his wife loves himself;
for no one ever hated his own flesh,
but nourishes and cherishes it.” – Ephesians 5:29, NASB
A husband who loves his wife nourishes her. The word nourish literally means to feed. In this case the apostle Paul is talking about a man nourishing his body. It illustrates how he should care for his wife as himself. They are one flesh in marriage. Don’t get the wrong idea. He is not talking about “spoon feeding” her at the table. He is talking about a husband giving his wife tender loving care. He feeds her in different ways. She looks to him to care for her as the special one in his life. He cares for her unselfishly, recognizing the bond of love, making them one flesh in marriage.
- A husband feeds his wife’s self-image.
She knows that she is the special one in his life. His words of love, confirmation and approval are nourishing to her. For example, if she comes home from the beauty shop, she may be expecting approving comments about her hairstyle.
- A husband feeds his wife with hugs.
Non-sexual touching is often as important to her, if not more so, than the touch of a sexual suggestion. In a word, he nourishes her all the time. She needs a steady diet of his hugs and cuddling.
- A husband feeds his wife through listening to her and giving her his undivided attention.
Eye to eye contact is important. She needs to talk and share her heart. He shows his care by listening to her words and emotions.
- A husband feeds his wife with romantic words and actions.
She needs a steady diet of his steadfast love and devotion. She never tires of hearing these words – “I love you.”