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This One Song Can Dramatically Improve Your Marriage

She Believes in Me” written by Steve Gibb and sung by Kenny Rogers has the power to improve your marriage.

Wow! Is this is misleading statement designed as a catchy phrase to get you to read a blog post?


I’m not saying I’d never do something like it, but I’m not this time. I promise!

And, granted, the song itself can’t improve your marriage. Listen to it a thousand times and your marriage may not be any better.

But, it’s the principle within the song, which if applied, I’d come close to guaranteeing it will work.

Years ago I used to share that song on marriage retreats I led. Contained within it is one secret – one principle – which can dramatically change, maybe even save, a marriage.

Here are the lyrics, in case you don’t remember them:

(The bold emphasis is to make my point.)

While she lays sleeping, I stay out late at night and play my songs
And sometimes all the nights can be so long
And it’s good when I finally make it home, all alone
While she lays dreaming, I try to get undressed without the light
And quietly she says how was your night?
And I come to her and say, it was all right, and I hold her tight

And she believes in me, I’ll never know just what she sees in me
I told her someday if she was my girl, I could change the world
With my little songs, I was wrong
But she has faith in me, and so I go on trying faithfully
And who knows maybe on some special night, if my song is right
I will find a way, find a way…

While she lays waiting, I stumble to the kitchen for a bite
Then I see my old guitar in the night
Just waiting for me like a secret friend, and there’s no end
While she lays crying, I fumble with a melody or two
And I’m torn between the things that I should do
And she says to wake her up when I am through, 
God her love is true…

And she believes in me, I’ll never know just what she sees in me
I told her someday if she was my girl, I could change the world
With my little songs, I was wrong
But she has faith in me, and so I go on trying faithfully
And who knows maybe on some special night, if my song is right
I will find a way, while she waits… while she waits for me for me!

End of song.

There it is. 

Did you catch it?

It’s pretty simple. I’ve written about the principle before HERE, but the principle is simple. Inside the heart of every man is a desire to be respected, especially by the one he loves. When a man feels a high level of respect – from anything or anyone, he will do just about anything to earn it again – so he goes “on trying faithfully“, as the song says.

I know. The woman needs respect too. I know also, if she’s not receiving the love she deserves, it will be much harder for her to respect. I get it – I really do. It may not even seem fair to suggest what I’m suggesting – respecting anyone who doesn’t deserve respect. It would almost be like telling someone to love someone who doesn’t deserve to be loved or forgiving someone who doesn’t deserve forgiveness.

It’s radical talking. (Of course, Christians are called to love and forgive radically – just a reminder.)

I can’t help, however, pointing out something I’ve seen improve many marriages. When the woman makes even slight changes in how she respects – in the way she says things – the language she uses – the genuineness of her admiration – something changes in the man. Something good. He wants more of it.

And who knows, maybe on some special night, if his song is right, he’ll will find a way, while she waits, while she waits for him.

By the way, a note to my wife Cheryl: Thanks for believing in me – even when I don’t always believe in myself.

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Ron Edmondson

Author Ron Edmondson

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Join the discussion 5 Comments

  • Jon says:

    Probably you and I are the only ones looking at this post, but wanted to add to it in case someone in the future sees this.

    You are right; that respect thing is really critical to a man’s self-esteem and his desire to please his wife. Not saying that we as men shouldn't want to please our wives anyway, but in any given situation if she is treating me with that respect, it energizes me to want to do more and better.

    And in once sense you are right in that it seems faulty to demand unconditional respect of a wife when the husband isn’t loving her appropriately. But, in another sense, that’s exactly what Ephesians 5 calls us to do.

    I’m not a theologian, but my take on it, and others I have read, is that the call in Ephesians 5 is for men to UNCONDITIONALLY love their wives and wives are called to UNCONDITIONALLY respect their husbands. My read on that word is no matter what, no matter how the spouse is giving to you or not giving to you, you are to fulfill your duty. Now obviously, things like abuse would nullify that command, but beyond that, I believe that we are called to stand by our spouses with that unconditional love and/or respect.

    Where my marriage got into trouble, and I suspect others, is that it became a thing where each spouse was waiting on the other to go first and since the other wasn’t, each of us said “Well, I won’t either”. Now, it was more complex than this, but at it’s core, this is probably a good description. What it takes to move the marriage along is for one of the two to “man up” and do the right thing.

    In my situation I chose to be the man. God worked in my heart at a number of levels, but one of them was to infuse me with such an intense love for my wife. That combined with interactions with others and books that I have read, have led me to the conclusion that I needed to be the man, loving her unconditionally; period. No matter how she treats me; cold or warm, romantic or disinterested, with respect or not; I believe that Ephesians 5 calls me to love her unconditionally.

    The down side of this, so far, is that I have so bruised her heart and spirit, I’m not sure, that short of His intervention, that she will ever be in love with me again; and that is sad and depressing. But, I believe that I have no other recourse but to stay to course, to run the race, to obey my Lord. And yes, that flies in the face of conventional “wisdom”, but as you said this IS radical thinking.

    And perhaps there are situations where the wife needs to go first and be the mature one and step of, giving the husband unconditional respect; period; no matter what.

  • Jon says:

    Thanx Ron… And your post is so right on target. There are so many nights I lay there looking at her as she sleeps and pray that she would just wake up and roll over and smile at me or touch my arm and whisper "I love you" or something similar. I get excited to do things for her and if she'd just show that same level of excitement in return, I know that my heart would just soar and I'd make the next whatever so much better.

  • Jon says:

    AMEN, Brother.

    For so many years, I did not have my eyes on Him like I should. I am to blame; no one else. However, in the middle of that was also poor treatment of my wife. I know that she thinks it was aimed at her, but it was not; the pain she was feeling was collateral damage. And most of my bad feelings towards her were caused in a large part by her not respecting me like she should have. I'm not asking for a pass, I was to blame, but there were many days when I just wanted a smile in my direction or a walk around the block holding hands and it was like I was asking her for the world.

    Fast forward to today. God has healed all of the mess in my life. I try every day to keep my eyes on Him and stay on the path He wants me on. He's also given me this incredible love and a servant's heart for my wife. She benefits from that everyday in every way I can think of. But, she still doesn't see that she needs to respond to me with love and respect. It's not that she's purposefully mean to me, but she can hug and kiss the kids and walk right by me. I know that as much as I love her and as much as I try, IF she would treat me in the manner she should as a wife, I would find the energy and dig deeper and deeper to give her even more. There are a lot of things that I do because I love her and because it's the right thing to do, but if she demonstrated the love and respect of a Christian wife towards her husband, I would make every sacrifice and honor and love her in so many more ways because I WOULD WANT TO, not just because it's right. It would increase me love and devotion towards her to a level I can't even imagine.