A worthy woman is a crown to her husband, but she that makes ashamed is as rottenness in his bones, Prov 12:4.
A crown shows that a man is a leader, worthy of respect and honor. A wife crowns or dethrones her husband with her spoken attitudes and behavior. The public often takes its cue from her, for who can respect a “man who knows not how to rule his own house?” (1 Tim 3:5).
His wife’s subjections is probably the surest gauge of a husband’s character. Despite all her protestations, a wife who is not in subjection is easy to spot--she will not be in subjection anywhere. In Bible classes she is controversial, opinionated, and pushy. She speaks her mind in a sarcastic, hostile, or offensive tone of voice—and woe to the teacher who tries to point this out! She makes public scenes either by raising her voice or by being careless of who may be within earshot. Any man, anywhere, any time is prey to her razor-sharp tongue.
A wife’s loyalty to her husband is another way of bestowing honor on him. Unfortunately, we who consider ourselves loyal may behave in disloyal ways without ever realizing it. Loyalty is not confined to sexual fidelity.
A woman who does things she and her friends know her husband disapproves of is disloyal. Do you have to hide things from him? The phone bill? The credit card statement? Do you keep a dress for six months so that when you finally whip it out and wear it you can “truthfully” say, “No this isn’t new. I’ve had it quite awhile.” You might be surprised at some of the things I have heard women admit to. Even if his demands are unreasonable, the very fact that you gripe about them to others and then disregard them, shows that you want others to feel the same disdain for him you do. God intended that a husband and wife be for each other, each the one the other can count on.
A gossiping wife causes others to think less of her husband. How much would you be willing to share with a man whose wife spent half her day on the phone? Would you go to him for help with a problem? Would you be inclined to “confess your faults” (James 5:19)? Gossip causes everyone to “wag their heads” (Psa 64:8), a sure sign of disrespect.
A wife surely demeans her husband by making statements that begin, “He knows better than to…” as if he should fear the consequences she might hand out. What tales we tell about our marriages without realizing it!
Immoral behavior is probably the greatest disgrace a wife can bring to her husband. It leaves others questioning not only his control of the home, but his manhood as well. More Christians slip into adultery than you want to believe. Others get as close to it as they can with their choice of clothing. Lewd dress encourages men to think thoughts about other men’s wives that they have no business thinking. Not only has she shamed her husband, but she has caused others to sin as well.
When a woman acts in these ways, she is telling the world, “I do not feel my husband is worthy of honor and respect. Why should you?” And that publicly expressed attitude, even if never spoken aloud, eats away at him: “but she who makes ashamed is as rottenness in his bones.” Just as cancer can kill the body, a wife can murder her husband’s spirit.
Respect your husband; honor him as head. Do nothing that will shame him. Be a crown, the reason others respect and honor him. As it is said of the worthy woman:
Her husband is known in the gates where he sits among the elders of the land, Prov 31:23.