A Christian husband does not live to be served, but lives to serve his wife and children. His motivation is love -- loving God first, then loving those entrusted to his care before seeking to fulfill his own needs. Since his wife is his chosen life partner, investing sincere attention and love into her means that a husband considers his wife his most treasured "asset."
In addition to the expected responsibilities of working and providing, as well as protecting and defending, a Christian husband pastors, teaches and counsels his wife. Most importantly, he nourishes and cherishes her, and incubates her with love. This is succinctly and beautifully stated in The Message version of Ephesians 5:25-28:
"Husbands, go all out in your love for your wives, exactly as Christ did for the church -- a love marked by giving, not getting. Christ's love makes the church whole. His words evoke her beauty. Everything he does and says is designed to bring the best out of her, dressing her in dazzling white silk, radiant with holiness. And that is how husbands ought to love their wives. They're really doing themselves a favor since they're already 'one' in marriage."
The Biblical servant learned to be attentive and sensitive to needs. He watched for ways to help, doing things without being asked, sharing in household duties and going above and beyond what was necessary, without expecting gratitude in return.
The Christian husband practices these same principles, seeking to love as Jesus loved. The 'thanks' or rewards come back in countless other ways. Quality time and efforts invested are never wasted. Service is not slavery, with a negative connotation; rather it is giving or sowing, with the knowledge that an abundant harvest is forthcoming.
For the Christian husband, leading his wife is not "lording over" but watching over. The husband helps his wife realize her full potential, discussing and thinking through decisions together and making suggestions regarding wise utilization of her time and efforts. It is important that husbands not be too controlling or critical, but instead be appreciative, patient, considerate, gentle, encouraging, and above most other things, a good listener.
As the household manager, the Christian husband exercises diligence and reliability. He is aware of household needs and manages financial decisions. He also takes care of or arranges for repairs as needed in a timely manner. The husband doesn't use all his spare time for personal leisure or recreation, but first handles the business of the home. He doesn't allow things to pile up and alleviates his wife's anxiety whenever possible.
One characteristic of the virtuous woman in Proverbs 31 is that "the heart of her husband safely trusts her." This goes both ways. A wife's heart should be secure in her husband's love. If his desire is to love, honor, cherish and sustain her, together they can realize answered prayers and experience the blessings of being heirs together of the grace of life.