I was reminded again the other day about how much impact my words have on my husband. I was having a super frustrating day and I was kind of sharp with my husband. He seemed to withdraw emotionally and within moments, he physically removed himself from the room. Hmmm.
Then fast forward to a different day, and I decided to purposely look for something good about my husband and to actually tell him about that “good” that I see in him. The minute I did that, he got a little spring in his step. His entire countenance changed. Interestingly, he also seemed to be even more thoughtful and gentle toward me. It was as if my encouragement and respect made him feel so much better about himself that he now felt secure enough to be kind and loving and patient with others. Wow!
This reminded me of the Lord’s instructions for us to encourage each other. 1 Thessalonians 5:11 “Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.” We need encouragement, but so do our men! When was the last time you intentionally looked for good qualities in your husband and told him about those things? When was the last time you took note of him taking time to play with the kids, or handling a household chore without being told, or being kind to others?
Let’s commit to building up our guys. They need our steady encouragement, and we’ll also benefit as they begin to feel valued and respected.
I was reminded recently of how valuable it is for Christian women to gather with other godly women. A wife recently told me that, beyond learning valuable insights from God’s Word during Bible studies, what has really helped her is the encouragement, support and accountability from other godly women.
It’s true. Sometimes, we need that kick in the pants from another woman when we have wandered off track. Sometimes, it’s that empathy and warm hug from another woman when we are going through a challenging situation. Sometimes, what matters most is knowing friends in your women’s group will be praying for you during the week.
God’s Word tells us in Hebrews 10:24-25… “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another…” Our adversary wants us to isolate because then we’re more vulnerable! Without encouraging voices in our ear, all we hear are the enemies whispers of discouragement and hopelessness. So, the question is: Are you acting as a lone ranger or are you carving out time in your schedule to meet regularly with other godly women? We need each other. We are stronger together. Search for a women’s ministry in your area and start attending. If you live in northwest WA state, come join us at Squadron of Sisters. 🙂
Life often seems like a winding highway full of potholes. We get bounced around by people who disappoint us. We disappoint ourselves. Satan loves to plant that seed of doubt about whether we can make it through current challenges in our marriage, with our kids, at our job, etc. We wonder if we can handle what’s around the bend.
That’s why we need encouragers in our lives! 1 Thessalonians 5:11 says “encourage one another and build each other up.” My question for you is: Do you have a friend who encourages you? Or do you spend a lot of time with women who are negative, critical, and “downers”?
If you don’t have an encouraging woman in your life, ask God to reveal a woman who seems to have the gift of encouragement. Then ask her if you could regularly get together, perhaps once a week or every other week, just to chat and mutually encourage each other. That’s right. You can be her encourager too. We all need it! Let’s link arms together ladies!
If you’re going through some challenges with your husband right now, it’s really wise to seek godly counsel from another woman. Often another woman can see the situation more objectively. A godly woman can encourage you to persevere through challenges instead of giving up. Sometimes, another woman can help you see the need to set wise boundaries on unacceptable behavior. It’s also really wise to reach out to a few godly women who you know will pray for you and your husband.
However, there’s a fine line between seeking godly support and husband-bashing! Sometimes, we go beyond seeking advice and prayer support and we start gossiping and whining about our husbands. That’s not constructive and it’s very disrespectful to your husband. Let’s keep in mind God’s instruction to wives in Ephesians 5:33…”The wife must respect her husband“.
So check your heart before you pick up that phone to whine to a friend. Check your motives before you start complaining about your husband to another woman. Are you telling dishonoring stories about him in great detail and listing all of his faults…or are you actually looking for guidance and prayer support? Pay attention to the words you’re texting or speaking. Are they disrespectful or honoring to your husband?
I think I can. I think I can. I think I can. That’s the self-fulfilling prophecy repeated over and over again by the little train in the well-known children’s story. The train faced an up-hill battle, but it encouraged itself by stating positive thoughts out loud. In the end, the little engine’s encouraging words to itself spurred it on to successfully climb the hill.
Your husband and my husband are both like that little train. They face an uphill battle. The world tells our men they are failures, that they don’t measure up, that they’re not good enough. Satan constantly whispers words of discouragement to our guys. As a result, our men often stop attempting to grow spiritually. They often stop taking courageous steps forward in leading their families. Instead of boldly fighting for justice and integrity, many choose to check out through alcohol, drugs, video games, gambling or pornography. But WE can be that voice speaking encouragement to our men! We can say, “I think you can”. “I know you can”. “I believe in you”. “I’m praying for you.” “God’s going to give you the strength”. Hebrews 3:13 is a good reminder to us. It says “Encourage one another daily as long as it is called ‘Today’ so that no one is hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.”
We can help our husbands move from defeat and retreat to a place of exciting victory simply by our words of encouragement. Will you help your husband be the little engine that could? I think you can. I think you can. I think you can.