“A foolish child is a father’s ruin, and a quarrelsome wife is like the constant dripping of a leaky roof.”
Proverbs 19:13 (NIV)
If you’ve experienced a leaky roof or faucet – you know the kind where you hear the drip, drip, drip sound that seems never-ending and becomes all you hear to the point of not being able to focus on anything else – then you will appreciate the image Solomon portrays in Proverbs 19:13.
I’m pretty sure there is not a wife anywhere who wants to be thought of as something as annoying as a leaky roof. But, there it is plain as day: Solomon says that women who quarrel with their husbands are basically like that leaky faucet or roof with their continual dripping. On the surface, a constant drip with its monotonous sound is simply bothersome. But deeper down, the effects of the drip are more costly. Just as a steady drip, over time, can increase a water bill, constant quarreling will create enmity by wearing down a person and can ultimately cost a relationship.
As I thought about this, I realized that when I don’t submit to my husband’s authority and instead argue that my way is better – or even worse, just go my own way – that action makes me an annoying drip. I need to remember that when I married my husband, I vowed to trust his leadership, as Paul explains in Ephesians 5:22-24:
“Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.” (ESV)
This idea of submission does not mean wives are a doormat. But it does mean that if you are equally yoked with your husband (both of you are submitting to Christ in your lives), then you should trust your husband’s leadership. Of course, this relationship works both ways, as Paul tells husbands that they should “love their wives, just as Christ loved the church” (Ephesians 5:23 NIV).
It all comes down to respect. If the husband loves his wife as Christ loves the church and the wife respects her husband the way she and her husband respect the Lord, there will be no room for “drippiness.” So, rather than quarrelling, pray first and follow the solutions God provides through prayer and his word in areas in your marriage where you disagree. In fact, why not study the topic together? Marriage is hard, but when Christ is the glue that holds it together, there will be much less room for the leaks of life that come in to annoy and destroy.