Some men love to be busy. A man who is running in all directions gives the appearance of being a “mover and a shaker”. And men love to “run” things. “Let me RUN this by you…” “I’m RUNNING for office” “I’ve got to RUN!”
But sometimes sheer busy-ness is a means of RUNNING AWAY from other things. Just as keeping busy helps people forget their worries or their pains, keeping busy can be an excuse for not getting to things that are important.
I was approached by a businessman last month and he shared with me how his marriage presents a number of challenges. He asked if I could assist and I offered to be available.
A week or so later, when I phoned him to follow up, he was BUSY! I don’t mean he was too busy to talk with me, but he was just flat-out busy. He had clients to service and trips to make here and there. It was pretty heady stuff and he was getting a kick out of being a “man on the run!”. But what about the marriage? That would have to wait, as it had many times before.
This man is not consciously running away from his challenges, but in practice he is putting busy-ness ahead of things he knows need his attention.
Many a man will bury himself in his career and material aspirations, only to later find that his wife and children feel abandoned by him. He may protest that he has provided SO MUCH for them, but the common reply is, “We would rather have YOU than the money!”
Being a Man on the Run can be an escape. It can be a way of alleviating the conscience, so men don’t feel they have an excuse for neglect.
Now, let me say a word about “neglect”. Husbands are commanded to “love” their wife. In fact, that command is repeated in the New Testament. Most things that are repeated are being reinforced, because they are likely to be overlooked or taken for granted. So, why did God choose to reinforce the command for husbands to “love” their wife?
Most men are prone to neglecting their wife. It is the most common form of abuse a man commits against his marriage. When men bury themselves in work or other commitments they are simply giving in to their most common weakness. They are choosing to neglect their marriage, wife, children and family, in preference for something else.
[Women also abuse their marriage – to find out how just read MARRIAGE HORIZONS and MENDING MARRIAGES]
So, Mr Man on the Run, it’s time to take off your track shoes and put on your slippers. It’s high time you reviewed your priorities and gave your marriage the attention and investment it deserves. Remember, the most important investment you can make into your wife and your children is “YOU”. Give yourself to them and the rewards will be rich and abundant.