Today you get to hear from my incredible wife. She agreed to write a post for the ladies in honor of Valentine’s Day. We started dating way back in high school and have been married for thirteen years now. After reading what she has to share, you will see that I am definitely a lucky man. She is an incredible wife and mother. She also has a blog where she shares about the joys of marriage, parenting, and being a pastor’s wife. Check it out at JenniMorris.com.
Yesterday Mike posted “Guys, do you want a new marriage?” Today he asked me to come up with some tips for the Ladies.
Mike and I had a conversation about a week ago about how many people are facing divorce and marriage problems. It’s not the problem of “40 somethings” or our parents friends. It’s effecting our friends and people our age and even younger. We even have some former youth that have already been through the pain of divorce.
At first I though that I was to give guys tips from a woman’s perspective and he was going to give the girls a man’s perspective. Isn’t it just like us as women to want the opportunity to give our men criticism disguised as “marriage tips”. I like that he shared from his heart to other guys about what he as a husband has learned. I can’t think of a better person to give marriage advice than my husband. He isn’t perfect and neither is our marriage but he is committed to our family and to God to continually learning and striving to make our marriage what it should be.
Before I start “the list” I can’t emphasize enough that your marriage has to be centered around Jesus. If it’s not the list you are about to read is nothing but a bunch of “self-help” rules that you can get from Dr. Phil. The Bible says “. . . a cord of three strands is not easily broken.” When you face difficult times in your marriage, Jesus will be the one to hold it together. When things are going great in your marriage, Jesus will be the glue that makes it even more incredible.
OK Ladies here it is . . .
- Respect your husband. Ephesians 5:33 says that “each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” Websters defines respect as “giving special attention to”. Give special attention to your husband. Show him you care about his job, his interests, his hobbies. So many times men are respected at their job and come home to a wife who gives him the message that he isn’t anything special or worth respecting. He wants to see in your eyes that he has your approval, that you admire and respect him.
- Build him up. The world can be a harsh place. Your husband needs to know that you are his safe place. The place he can come to hear words of encouragement. Do you inspire him or exasperate him? Do you compliment him or complain about him? Do you strengthen him or control him? One of the most unattractive things for a woman to do is complain about or put down her husband in front of others. It is heart breaking to hear the way some women tear their husbands down to others. Your words can build up or tear down – what do your do?
- Let him be the leader God has made him. As women sometimes we view our home as “our territory”. We spend time making our homes look nice, making our kids look and behave a certain way, organizing and directing activities even to the point that our husbands can become just another “thing to manage”. This leaves him feeling frustrated and ready to hide behind the newspaper and stay out of the way. Give your husband permission to be a leader in your family. Have you ever heard (or like me – done it yourself) a wife treat her husband like one of her children. This can be so true of parents of small children – mommy instinct takes over and all of the sudden your husband feels like your his mother and he can’t do anything right. Let him lead. If he puts the diaper on backwards – so what. If he gives the kids cake for breakfast – they won’t be ruined for life (and he may get Dad of the year!) If he fails don’t tell him “I told you so” – tell him “I’ll help you up”.
- Take him seriously. As his wife take his job and his stress level seriously. Men are too often defined by “what they do” – their jobs. Watch two men introduce themselves to one another and within a minute or two they will ask each other “what do you do” It isn’t helpful for you to compete with him about who has the most stressful job – men or women. We aren’t rivals. We need to stand beside each other and play on the same team.
- Go to bed early. Save a little bit of your time and energy for you husband. Kids, housework, jobs, activities and even church can wear us out to the point that we have nothing left to give. Leave the dishes in the sink and the laundry in the dryer and go to bed early. You should be able figure the rest out on your own.
We get the name of Valentine’s Day from St Valentine who was a Christian martyr. Take time this Valentine’s Day to give away a little of your self to your spouse. A little sacrifice can go a long way in your marriage.
HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!