A Married Man Cannot Live on Bread (or Dinner) Alone

Welcome  You are probably familiar with the passage, “Man cannot live on bread alone.” (Matt. 4:4) Of course, this is Jesus referring to spiritual nourishment as a greater need than physical nourishment.  Today, I want us to think about our marriages and the fact that our husbands, too, cannot live by bread, or dinner, alone.

Food For Thought  Let me describe a typical 5 pm scene for you.  It’s been a busy day of running errands, caring for the kids, taxiing them between multiple activities, and helping with homework and school projects.  Now it’s time for the daily task of preparing dinner for the family.  It needs to get going quick because there’s Bible study group tonight.  Now you’re juggling pots and dishes while trying to get the vegetables chopped and peeled.  Between packing tomorrow’s lunches and turning down the boiling pot on the stove, your husband walks in from his day at work.  He calls, “Hello, how are you?”  Instead of greeting him with a warm smile, you mutter, “Fine,” and rush to progress the nightly meal.

He comes into the kitchen and tries to greet you with a kiss and hug, but you turn away, too busy with your tasks at hand and irritated at the timing of his advances.  Who has time for this right now?

Whoa!  I have so been there!  One night this week, in fact, between picking up my daughter from Robotics and carting her off to Horsemanship, I needed to get my family fed, among other tasks.  When my husband greeted me, I was tempted to push him away and say I was too busy.  In fact, the old me would have not only pushed him away, but gotten angry.  Then I would have wondered a few days later why my husband wasn’t extending physical intimacy, blaming it on something such as my weight or a problem with him, instead of my attitude.

You see, ladies, our husbands cannot live on bread, or dinner, alone.  Yes, they want to be fed and yes, I believe that most of the time it is my job to take care of my families meals.  But we nourish our husbands with so much more than food.  They need a daily connection with us.  They need us to let them know they are far more important than the boiling pasta or the chopped onions.  They need to know the number one priority is them, rather than the lunchboxes sitting on the counter.  Taking just a couple of minutes away from the kitchen tasks at hand will let them know you appreciate them and are really glad to see them home again.

My husband loves to eat and he loves most everything I cook for him.  But what he loves more?  He loves when I stop what I’m doing in the kitchen (or whatever other chores I might be doing) and look at him, ask him how his day was, and really listen.  And then, if we haven’t already, embrace for that hug and kiss.  I told him the other day, as he kissed me in the kitchen among piles of sandwich bags and carrot peelings, that this was my favorite time of day.  It’s true.  I’m so thankful that the Lord has brought him back home safely from another day of work, that I will gladly stop and express that love with an act of physical connection.

When you’re planning the night’s dinner, don’t forget to plan your greeting at the end of the work day.  Remember, our husbands need more than physical nourishment, but also verbal encouragement and physical intimacy.  Living on bread, or dinner, alone, will leave you with an unbalanced marriage.

Today’s Scripture

Today’s Recipe  Well, certainly my man cannot live on bread alone!  But after some kitchen cuddles, I bet he’d appreciate a nice hot meal.  He definitely appreciates my simple take on Salisbury Steaks.  It’s one of his favorites!

Salisbury Steak is basically a meatloaf patty with brown gravy.  Some folks add some tomato paste or ketchup to their gravy, but we’re tomato-free here due to my allergies.  Anyway, the beef mushroom soup is full of flavor and makes this dish simple to prepare and very savory.  This recipe makes enough for a large family or for leftovers, which our family loves to eat the next day.  You can half the recipe if leftovers aren’t your thing.

Simple Salisbury Steaks (serves 6-10, depending on how big you make your patties)

  • 3 lbs lean ground beef
  • 2 10.5-oz cans beefy mushroom soup (I used Campbell’s)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup fine, dry breadcrumbs
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • mashed potatoes, for serving

In large mixing bowl, place ground beef, 1/2 cup of the soup, eggs, breadcrumbs, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper.  Mix well with hands and form 6 to 10 thick patties.

Spray a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium heat.  Place patties in skillet, cooking in batches, until cooked through.  Note–Our patties were very thick, so it took six to seven minutes per side to get them cooked well done.  Remove cooked patties to a plate or tray.

In the same skillet used for the meat patties, add the remaining can and a half of soup.  Whisk together with the pan drippings and then add the milk, stirring well.  Serve gravy over cooked meat patties and mashed potatoes.