And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.  Galatians 6:9 ESV

Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power.  James 4:16 ESV

A mentor once told me, “A husband and wife are like two different types of batteries.” Easily confused, I asked, “What are you talking about?”

He replied, “The wife is a battery that when depleted must be thrown out – it’s used all the energy. The husband is a rechargeable battery – it can be depleted but can also be recharged.”

He went on to say, “I’ve observed that a wife will be patient, then have more patience with her husband, but when she says that she is finished with the relationship, that’s it. She won’t come back. A husband will say that he is finished but then change his mind and want to restore the relationship.”

Fine print: I’m treading on difficult topics. Today, it’s complicated to generalize male and female. Some don’t even want us to say male and female. There are nuances to be considered and all rules have exceptions.

Hey, I’m 68 years old. Keep reading and don’t get angry, I’m trying to be helpful.

I’ve talked to dozens of husbands who have come to me after their wives have left. He wants back in the relationship and wants me to talk to his spouse. I’ve tried and failed – almost always.

The wife was finished. She was patient, forgiving, time after time, and having decided to leave – left.

Too late for the husband.

I’ve talked with wives whose husbands have left. She wants me to talk with her husband. I usually advise waiting. I counsel her to talk to a seasoned counselor. A high percentage of the time, he will come back, but she needs to consider the circumstances from which she will re-engage the relationship.

Not too late for the wife.

Husbands:  You need to read and memorize James 4:16.

Too many men have no clue as to the offenses they are committing in their relationships with their wives. Confession with men often begins with confrontation by another man. We are typically too bull-headed to see or admit our faults without a wrestling match.

Wives:  You have dignity. I would give him another chance – one more –the next chance may be the 70 times seven forgiveness that Jesus discussed (Matthew 18:21-22). But it will be worth the sacrifice.

However, live the reconciliation correctly (again, get counsel).

Another observation:  If a divorce ensues, often the husband recovers better than the wife.

Adding insult to injury, the bone-headed man causing the separation recovers faster. It could be a wage/education difference that will change with culture. It could also be the battery illustration that demonstrates created differences.

Men recharge quickly. Women do not.

Men, the worst decision you can make for your financial future is to be unfaithful or hardhearted in your marriage. I observe former millionaires unable to make car payments at age 66. Your worst financial investment is a relationship trespass.

Women, the man can change (again, place boundaries). Your battery can be supernaturally recharged. A life with a husband, children, grandchildren, and even travel, is better than unforgiveness.

A final note:  As our male/female genders become more homogenized – I’ve begun to observe men with a throw-away battery and women with a rechargeable one.

The same principles of reconciliation still apply – forgiveness, confession, and perseverance.