Wednesday, November 26, 2014
Become familiar with your wife's world. Create a love map. A love map is essentially a mental map about her, that speaks her native language listing unique characteristics about her by gathering as much information as possible about her, in order to simulate her environment, in your head.
While creating this map, sky is the limit for a loving husband. He should be able to make note of her life dreams, her hopes and aspirations, her fantasies, what she likes and dislikes in a spouse, the current stress she is undergoing, her favorite music and movies, the color and the shades she likes the most, her favorite and least favorite relatives, the dreams she had as a child. The love map you build should even contain her current cloth and shoe sizes - literally everything about her.
It is a process of continuous discovery. If she is working, be thoroughly familiar with her world. Learn where she parks her car, through which door she goes in, where she sits, what is on her desk and inside those drawers, those objects which make up her surroundings, who are her best friends at work, what are her daily challenges, what are her small wins, and what her needs are. In a nutshell, know her world in and out, just like his own world, along with those ever changing variables.
Ephesians 5:28 ESV In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.
Your relationship will elevate to a profound new level once you understand the inner world in which your wife lives. This will take some time to learn, but it paves way to know more about her childhood, the way her parents and siblings treated her, certain trauma or fears she had from childhood, those things she accomplished and holds on dearly and proudly. Remember - her world is your world too.
Ephesians 5:31 ESV “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”
Create a love map of your spouse in such a manner that she becomes your best friend. Show interest in her so that she opens up and reveals more to you in a way she never has. This will establish an amazing and strong friendship with your wife. Seek to continuously update that map by probing what she is thinking, feeling and doing, so that you are aware of her ever changing environment and needs. Use clues from the love map you developed to buy her small, yet valuable gifts on those special occasions.
Lord Almighty, I ask you to provide insight into the world my wife lives in - both inside and outside our home. Strengthen her in her world so that she is not alone. Enable me to be part of her world, and allow me to share her burdens and happiness. I lift up all those troubles she is facing today and request you to heal them.
Tuesday, November 25, 2014
Watch your wife get ready. Go stand behind her. Hug your wife from behind while she is working with her makeup. Look into the mirror while hugging her. Let her know how appealing and beautiful she looks. Also comment about her internal beauty and those lovely qualities. Encourage her to improve that inner beauty.
1 Peter 3:3-4 Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God's sight.
Whenever possible, let her know the way you like her hair to be. Once in a while, offer to comb her hair, in front of the mirror. Think like that teenager you once used to be.
1 Corinthians 11:15 ESV But if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? For her hair is given to her for a covering.
Encourage your wife to cover her head during prayers. Help her with ornaments such as a chain or bracelet. Kiss her on the back of her neck right after hooking that chain.
Compliment your wife in specific ways if you find it pleasing. On that day you have to leave early to work, leave her a love note on the bathroom mirror. Make time to stay with her when she gets ready. Offer to dry her hair with the hairdryer - which enables you to understand the difficulty in maintaining long hair.
Heavenly Father, I thank you for the beauty you have provided my wife, which I enjoy everyday. Bless her continually with that internal beauty within her so that she may reflect and shine Your bright light wherever she goes. Let her beauty remind me about how wonderful You, her Creator are.
Sunday, November 2, 2014
During those daily trips, our bodies and vehicles acquire dirt and sin from the environment.
Hebrews 10:22 let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.
Take her car out for a wash. Vacuum clean the interior, remove those mud and dust, along with any left behind food particles. Finally, make sure it is filled with gas before returning it. If time permits, swing by the local walmart and pick up a car fragrance and place it on the dashboard. Girls love nice smell and they will appreciate the clean and aromatic car scent.
While the fresh car smell keeps her happy, it is the role of the husband to clean his wife's mind with the word of God as well. One who stays connected with God is considered clean.
Ephesians 5:26 so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,
We want our entire family to stay connected with God and always be clean of sinful impurities. The way to stay clean is by reading the word of God everyday, with the entire family.
John 15:3 You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.
For those who want to go beyond these, a better idea is to check with your wife about which stains in her car bothers her the most. Sometimes it maybe the ones on the rear seat, where kids snack and make a mess. A one time appointment at the Car Spa or cleaning service would keep her mind at peace, and she will drive the car just the way a princess gallops on her pony.
Your wife feels taken care of, when you take care of her surroundings. Ensuring that she moves around in a reliable and clean car makes he feel secure. Mark your calendar to take her car out for regular maintenance including oil and tire change. When winter approaches, it is a good idea to winterize the car and check batteries. Leave a love note inside the car when returning from a car wash.
God Almighty, I pray that my wife moves around in a safe and reliable vehicle at all times. I understand that it is my responsibility to provide her a safe environment. Please enable me to fulfill that responsibility. I ask you to watch over her while she is away from home. May your team of angels watch over her wherever she goes. I pray for my wife to reach her destinations on time.
Thursday, October 23, 2014
Electronic gadgets have become commonplace and all of us have an electronic fingerprint. If you are an old person like me, you may recall the good old days where we had no electronic shackles. Everyone was free to move around and only God knew where everyone was. Ok - our best friends knew where we were.
Once we have those new gadgets, then we have to have someone sending us messages. That could be emails, fb posts, tweets, whatsapp messages, or even texts. Phone calls are bit old fashioned!
When you are away at work, or travelling, communicate with your wife via various electronic media available. Call her to check on her and to inform her how you are doing. Just call for the sake of hearing her voice.
Proverbs 16:23 (NLT) From a wise mind comes wise speech; the words of the wise are persuasive.
Send her an email, if there are things you do not need immediate answers. Let her think over those items and take her own sweet time to respond. Take time to compose an email, and do not be afraid to pour out your heart.
While at office, stay connected via short and sweet text messages such as,
- Thinkin abt U.
- Waitin to C U 2nite
- Had Lunch?
Once in a while, send her some hot & sexy text message. Women feel uncomfortable and vulnerable when anyone comments about any body parts other than their face. A word of caution - double check the destination address, as you do not want to end up such messages in wrong hands.
A wife misses her husband while he is away, and she tends to feel lonely. A good husband will stay connected. The goal of him communicating to his wife while he is away is to provide a soothing and comforting atmosphere.
Proverbs 12:18 (NLT) Some people make cutting remarks, but the words of the wise bring healing.
When asked about opinions, speak the truth. Do not sugarcoat or try to impress by a good answer. Being a practical person, women know that truth is sour but they will accept it.
Proverbs 24:26 An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips.
Stay in touch with your wife constantly. Send her one liners text messages, emails, voice mails or even short romantic poems when you find them. Let her know that you think of her numerous times a day. Women tend to evaluate their 'likeliness' everyday and receiving communication from you brings a feeling of belonging.
Dear God, allow my wife to feel secure and a sense of belonging while I am away from her. Enable her to stay connected with you at all times. From my side, I ask you for the right words to include in those messages so that she is amused, engaged and entertained without feeling the void. Though we are far apart during the day, bring us together by means of constant communication and prayers.
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
A husband should always remember that his wife has left her home and surroundings to join him in his journey. Whatever decision he makes, affects her as well. She is fully dependent upon him to navigate her through the maze of life.
A wife can see her husband's character much clearer than anyone, and she is constantly observing it. He can gain her confidence by being honest and possessing integrity. Integrity is the bond that holds the virtues of a man together. Integrity is the mark of a man who has successfully combined good principles. Such a wife respects her husband and feels extremely safe in his company. Men with integrity are destined to succeed at all times.
Proverbs 10:9 (NLT) People with integrity walk safely,
but those who follow crooked paths will be exposed.
In order to uphold integrity, one may have to suffer setbacks at times. The best biblical example is the tragedy that struck Job. Listen to what Job's wife says out of frustration:
Job 2:9 (NLT) His wife said to him, “Are you still trying to maintain your integrity? Curse God and die.”
Job knew his wife did not mean what she said. She was broken down after the hefty loss they incurred. Job stood there like a mighty oak tree without shattering his faith in the Lord and not willing to compromise his integrity. In the long run, individuals with honesty and integrity rise to the top, just like how oil always floats over water.
Proverbs 2:7 (NLT) He grants a treasure of common sense to the honest.
He is a shield to those who walk with integrity.
We see that in the story of Job as well. Lord strengthens those who decide to stay firm in their principles.
Job 42:10 (NLT) When Job prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his fortunes. In fact, the Lord gave him twice as much as before!
Those with integrity are good at keeping promises - whether small or big. They receive respect from their family in return. The wife of such an individual will feel extremely safe in following such a husband in her new environment.
Work on strengthening those factors such as truthfulness and integrity. Trust in small things yield towards trust in larger things. When a husband shows the traits of integrity, every small compliment he makes made on various occasions adds intimacy. Tell her truly what you love about her - regardless of how insignificant that is. She will value your honest opinion.
God Almighty, please grant my wife the heart to follow me wherever I take her. Make her confident and fearless that she is walking in Your way. Kindly enable me to possess the traits of honesty and integrity both at home and outside. May my family members feel safe around me and in what I speak. I pray for her family members who miss her at this time. Enable her to feel at home in her new surroundings.
Thursday, October 16, 2014
It is a masculine trait to be rough and tough. The blueprint for Manhood model proposed by David and Brannon in 1976 describes four standards of traditional American masculinity:
(1) “no sissy stuff”
The ideas is that a man does not do whatever a women does. This means, distancing self from femininity, homophobia, and avoiding emotions.
(2) “be a big wheel”
This refers to a man needing to feel he is in charge of situations. This means striving for achievement and success, and focusing on competition.
(3) “be a sturdy oak”
This calls for a need to be independent and self-reliant. Avoiding vulnerability, staying composed and in control, and being tough is what this means.
(4) “give em hell”
Being courageous and risk taker, even when it may not be in one's best interest. Acting aggressively to become dominant is the message.
The authors agreed that no single man can achieve all four levels at the same time, but portrays the most idealized dormant masculinity. These traits are constantly projected by media and are ingrained into the heads of men since childhood and creates a sense of pride.
When pride creeps into the head of husbands, they are getting ready to be doomed. Pride is the number one enemy in a household. A husband who tires to show his masculinity according to those preconceived notions is creating a hell for himself. Pride creates a sense of self reliance and creates wedge between family members.
Proverbs 11:2 ESV When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.
A pride husband starts to think that he alone is the wise guy around the house. To him, rest of his family including his wife are inexperienced and foolish. He should instead lean on God's wisdom.
Proverbs 26:12 ESV Do you see a man who is wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.
A wise husband treats everyone at home with respect. He sets aside his pride and takes the input from everyone - even the ones that come from little children.
Proverbs 12:15 ESV The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man listens to advice.
When a wife notices her husband to be filled with pride, she at some point stops pointing it out to him because it is futile attempting to show him so. A practical woman can see pride blinding her husband.
When a husband genuinely knows that he is wrong, he should not be ashamed to say, "I am sorry" both in front of the Lord and in front of his wife. By doing so, the husband is letting go of the pride and it frees him up. At times, there are several ways a certain task could be done at home. Once in a while, do few tasks the way your wife wants them to be done. This is not a sign of weakness, rather a sure way to win her heart.
Heavenly Father, I pray for my wife to be able to experience a humble and happy environment at home. Strengthen my wife so that she is able to point out when I am acting with pride. It is so easy for her to notice, rather than me. Enable my wife to be my compass, measuring my pride at all times. Please humble me and enable me to develop a 'Christ' like attitude. May all our family members exhibit humility at all times and at all places.
Having the right right attitude makes a ton of difference at home. We should treat our wife just as equal as we are, and that equality should be evident in all our actions towards her.
Galatians 3:28 ESV There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
Treating his wife equally comes naturally to a wonderful husband. He is able to see the image of his creator in his own wife.
Colossians 3:10 ESV And have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.
At times of indifference, act politely with respect and value her as God's creation. A great husband will show restraint to anger and stay calm at all times. By having a positive attitude, he will be able to shine Lord's light into his family. His wife and children will learn from him.
Philippians 2:14-15 ESV Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,
Women are lot more practical than men, and they expect their husbands to be 'awake' and alert at all times. Rather than buying her a dozen roses, it may be lot more considerate by helping her with house chores by putting on the apron. In the midst of a non-judgmental, considerate environment, love is always in the air.
Gracious Lord, enable me and my wife to have the right positive attitude towards each other. Strengthen each one of us with self control so that we are able to overcome those negative attitudes towards each other. I pray for the ability to create an Eden like environment at home, where there is mutual respect for each other.
Monday, October 13, 2014
One of the biggest fear of a wife is whether or not she is being liked by her husband and family members. She depends on her husband for this approval. Mere words of comfort won't suffice in driving out this fear, rather actions of love can do the trick.
1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
A good husband assures his wife that he loves her. Everyday he makes it a point to say, "I love you." A great husband provides assurance that God loves her. He makes time to pray with her and treats her as his gift from heaven.
Psalm 23:4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
The concern whether she is spending sufficient time with her children and treating them right haunts her. This is true especially when a wife is dividing her time between work and home. It leaves her in a state of confusion and can make her feel guilty. On such occasions, she will reach out to her husband to get his point of view. This can be a constant question, and should not make the husband weary. The husband can take his wife's hand and lead her towards God. May the Lord handle her fears and console her.
Isaiah 41:13 For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.
One thing she may not be aware of, is the stealth nature of the devil. He prowls around every household, looking for an opportunity to wreck havoc in marriages. A wise husband with insight will see this threat and pray for her. The incident at the Garden of Eden is sufficient to learn a good lesson.
Matthew 10:28 Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.
Prayer and fasting is the only means to keep this One at bay.
Assure your wife that you treat her as your gift. Spend time with her in prayers and may the Lord break her fears. Comfort her and banish her doubts. Talk to her about your long term plans. A wife wants to have long lasting relationship and is always looking forward for things to do in the future - along with her husband. She becomes extremely relaxed while noticing love and senses commitment in the relationship.
Dear God, I have noticed my wife to be fearful at times. I want to approach you along with her and pray that may Your presence give my wife strength and courage today and everyday. Please make her understand that she is not alone and you are watching over her at all times. Shield her from those wicked schemes of the devil, and give her insight to realize when she is being tempted and tested. Kindly remind her that You are in control and that You will take care of all her needs. Please use me in whatever way You like, to strengthen her all the days of our lives.
Sunday, October 12, 2014
Women are quite emotional and that's the way Lord created them. A wife needs to be able to share her emotional thoughts with her husband. For this reason, she needs a good friend with whom she is comfortable opening up and speaking to. It is bit hard for a husband to understand how the wife may be feeling, and what she is going through. No husband can fit in the shoes of his wife's girlfriend. However, with blessings from Lord, it is possible for a husband to be a wife's understanding friend.
Luke 11:9 So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
Being a wife's best friend leads to be her lover. It is lot easier to love a friend, and stay as best friends with the lover. Love her the way she is, with her strengths and weaknesses - life is at it's best with a best friend.
Proverbs 17:17 A friend loves at all times.
Be bold enough to speak the truth. A true friend will speak out the truth while the entire world won't. Gain that confidence from your wife that you are truthful to her and everyone around you at all times - after all, she sees you day and night how you behave with others.
1 John 3:18 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.
At first accepting the truth maybe a difficult task, and may even cause few wounds. Over the course of time, she will realize that truth tastes lot better than those sweet kisses of lies.
Proverbs 27:6 NLT Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy.
A loving husband speaks to his wife about those wounds and will lead her towards God. After all, good friends lead others towards God, who can fix any broken wounds - lot better than the best surgeon.
Psalm 147:3 ESV He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
A wise husband will create an aura of Godly happiness and peace at home by simply being his wife's best friend and lover.
Talk to her about her interests, learn more about what goes on in her world. Encourage her by putting more courage into her. Celebrate her wins. Give her words of life so that she can chew upon them during the day, and stay motivated. Seek her confidence and trust. Become her friend by being a friend.
God Almighty, Provide me with a heart of understanding so that I may comprehend the emotional needs of my wife. Allow me to be a good friend to my wife. Enable me to display traits of truth at all times, so that my wife may trust completely in my friendship. I pray that my wife is receptive to truth the way it is, without worrying about those temporary hurts.
Saturday, October 11, 2014
All of us have few things that flare up our anger or upsets us. We call these the 'button'. A button is something that gets you angry or upset, or causes a negative reaction in either you or your spouse.
Here are couple of facts about buttons in a marriage. First and foremost, a button has to exist, in order to be pressed - nobody can press a button that does not exist. In case of a wife, cleanliness could be a button. When a husband carelessly messes around a place that was just cleaned by his wife, he is pressing her cleanliness button. This can make her upset, and eventually angry.
The 'hurry up' button is rushing her while going out to get ready. A wise husband realizes the fact that she is going to take however long she needs to get ready - rushed or not. He will instead use subtle ways to create a sense of urgency, other than saying, "hurry up" or producing irritated sighs.
The most dangerous button of a wife is when a husband suggests another woman to be attractive or hot. Regardless of who this other woman is, she instantly becomes the archenemy of your wife. Anytime you bring up her subject in a conversation, the wife's brain is saying, "Oh, you took time to think about her so much that now she is appearing in conversations." This topic can drive her paranoid. In our eyes, our wife is the hottest woman who ever walked the planet, is walking, or will ever walk the planet.
Proverbs 29:22 An angry person stirs up conflict,
and a hot-tempered person commits many sins.
St. Paul gives us advise as to settle any disputes before the sun goes down. It is to avoid us from committing further sins.
Ephesians 4:26 “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry,
How we react to such button pressings completely depends upon us. Self control and patience is the key in not pressing a hot button. A loving, caring and understanding husband will have an enormous amount of patience.
Proverbs 16:32 Better a patient person than a warrior,
one with self-control than one who takes a city.
Patience further strengthens a relationship and enables us to see our partner from another angle. Be aware of her monthly cycles and emotional roller coaster. Never use harsh words, though you maybe tempted to - as they can leave some everlasting wounds. Have a gentle approach towards her - handle her just like how one would handle a baby - with tender care.
Beloved Holy Spirit, come into our family and provide both of us with your patience. Enable us not to mock each other nor push each other's buttons. Give us the patience from reacting or over reacting to situations that emerge in our family lives. Bless us with self control and the strength to reconcile with each other over all disputes arising in our family before the sun goes down.
Friday, October 10, 2014
Is there a marriage where there is no confrontation? The one which comes pretty close is most likely the one wherein the husband is deaf and the wife is dumb. Disagreements are bound to creep in when two individuals are together - especially when it involves a man and woman, due to their difference in biological DNA.
Disagreements need not be defined to a married couple. If you are in a marriage, you already know it. But let us do a 'Root Cause Analysis' of the situation. The first and foremost item that jumps out at is the selfish nature within us. We are after something that we are not getting. That "something" can be vary from person to person.
James 4:1 What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?
In most marriages, the personality of the husband is different from that of the wife. One could be task oriented, while the other people oriented. The personality trait of one maybe introvert, while the other extrovert. Opposites attract and this attraction brings in opposite views.
In these circumstances, the husband should try and see the big picture that now we are not alone; rather a team of two where decisions impact the two of us.
A loving husband should weigh in the motive Check and see the facts along with emotions. This means using both our head and heart to arrive at a decision. Pay close attention to see if there is a special or hidden agenda, or even a selfish motive behind the confrontation.
Philippians 2:3-4 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
Most husbands think about being silent and withdraw from the situation. This is not a good solution.
Proverbs 18:1 NASB He who separates himself seeks [his own] desire, He quarrels against all sound wisdom.
We are told to behave like Jesus Christ in such situations. By doing so, we are not being weak; rather we are building a strong team.
Philippians 2:5-8 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus
Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
Blessed is the marriage where both spouses feel the other is a good friend. Blessed is the marriage where spouse who will listen, understand, and work through any problem or conflict. Deal you confrontation at home using communication. Silence is not the best solution, and it is what most husbands do. Be the peacemaker at home and display Godly traits. Say healing and restorative words, without pride coming into your midst. If you feel sorry, say so.
God Almighty, I ask you to impart strength to both myself and my wife at times of disagreements. May neither of us pursue our selfish interests, and give us the wisdom to pursue decisions for the sake of our family - regardless of whether the idea comes from me or my wife. Help us to communicate and bring back peace into our relationship.
Thursday, October 9, 2014
Marriage is a fantastic voyage where we discover numerous things as we go. In a wonderful marriage, the best is yet to come. When a wife shares her emotions, she is speaking what's on her heart. A caring and loving husband will hear the tone of her voice and understand that her emotions are taking the form of words.
Luke 6:45 A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.
During such occasions, they typical husband gets into the mode of Mr. Fix-it, because that is our natural instinct. We tend to fix everything in our vicinity and come up with solutions. However, that is not what the feminine mind is expecting. All she is expecting are those strong shoulders where she can lean on and cry.
Again, nothing is expected to be fixed at this point. All she wants to hear is, "Honey, have faith in Our Lord; things will be alright in the end." She is hoping to receive some comfort from a husband who in turn derives his energy from the Holy Spirit - the One True Comforter.
John 14:26 (KJV) But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
A hug and kiss at this time will be more than what she expects. Anyone who does it can vouch that all her emotions will magically disappear in the next few minutes.
Here is word of caution. When a wife shares her emotions, do not just say, "Honey, have faith in Our Lord; things will be alright in the end" without listening to her entire story. That is sure to backfire. The right approach is to look into her eyes, listen to her worries, and in the end say those words with a hug and kiss. Do not worry though you do not understand the matter completely - your role is to show love and care by listening. Leave it to the Holy Spirit to increase wisdom and understanding.
Isaiah 11:2 (NASB) The Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him,
The spirit of wisdom and understanding,
The spirit of counsel and strength,
The spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.
Whenever your wife starts speaking about an incident/event that hurts her, pay attention to her voice. Tell her, "Let's talk about this, I want to understand," and just do the listening part followed by a comforting and assuring statement. Tell her that she can reach you if this matter further bothers you. If for any reason you are busy, be honest and say, "I am quite busy now, but how about we sit down and talk about this in the evening - I want to hear everything you have to say."
Dear Holy Spirit, You are the Comforter and the One who imparts Wisdom in the world. I request you to shower your blessings upon my wife so that she is comforted at times of emotional challenges. I ask you to provide me the understanding so that I may truly comprehend the situations she is undergoing and make me sensitive to her needs in that specific area.
Wednesday, October 8, 2014
There is a long list of items a wife expects from her husband. If we were to prioritize them, Love would be on top of the list. Communication is high up there, followed by understanding.
1 Peter 3:7 In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered.
What Peter tells us is rather startling - we are to treat our wives properly so that our prayers will not be hindered! This means there is an unheard and undeniable connection between the way we treat our wife and our prayer life. That is a pretty strong motivational task to understand our wife. Sounds like Peter is holding men responsible for creating that intimacy in marriage.
Understanding is all about accepting the way she is, with love, compassion and sympathy, identifying her situations, thoughts and feelings. To accomplish these, the starting point is togetherness. Just by living at the same address, eating the same meal, sleeping on the same bed, couples do not develop togetherness. It means knowing her well and those things which girls don't like such as violence, bad smell, vulgar, rough handling, etc,.
Ephesians 5:4 Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God.
An understanding husband should also know the list of things a wife likes. They like to be seen as beautiful or gorgeous. Makeup and hair do's are part of this activity. Her emotions of happiness, sadness, hurt and anger needs to be heard by a husband. During such occasion, she is literally putting her heart in her hands and holding out to her husband.
Understanding a wife involves spending lot of 'castle time' together. A husband has to be a lifelong student in the school of learning about his wife to improve himself. Conversations can lead towards understanding a wife. It is okay to ask a wife what she like to have. Women like to say things they love, and are quite open to such questions. It is even a good idea to write those things down. Wives have a delicate nature and their needs should be addressed in a tender way.
Father Almighty, give me the desire within me to learn and understand about my wife. I ask you for a kind heart so that I may treat her well. Enable me to learn more about her emotions, difficulties, and intimate needs so that I care for her accordingly. Let her taste the love I have for her and teach me how to display my affection towards her. Make her a proud wife so that she understands her true value.
Tuesday, October 7, 2014
A husband is considered rich when his heart is filled with love. In the absence of love, he is nothing.
1 Corinthians 13:2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.
From a wife's perspective, she feels loved and cared, when she is treated as 'top priority' in a husband's life. It hurts a woman when she recalls the priority with which she was treated either just prior or marriage, or soon after marriage.
Time is the biggest gift a husband can give his wife. A wife feels loved when the husband spends time with her. If the husband has to be away from his wife due to travel or other activities, it is certainly possible to communicate by sending regular love notes or phone calls. Let her not compete for your time and attention.
Ephesians 5:28-30 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church - for we are members of his body.
These days, we tend to think it is fashionable to provide a notion that we are busy with our lives. Under the covers, the truth is such individuals do not know how to manage their time and prioritize activities. Time at work or business does not directly translate into success; time with family does. While you enjoy job promotions and pay raise at work, you do not want your wife to endure fatigue and time pressure in solitude at home.
King Solomon teaches that there is a time for everything, including a time to love and a time to hate. Further he tells us that eternity is set into our human hearts.
Ecclesiastes 3:11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.
The wife Lord gave us is a beautiful gift, and it is our responsibility to keep her happy.
Invest in your relationship with your wife. Time is the means by which we express our priority and love towards her. A wife gets hurt when she learn her husband is choosing other activities or hobbies over her. This can make her shut down emotionally and may even withdraw. Once withdrawn, she will not open up in order to avoid being hurt again. Hurt leads to disappointment and eventually anger. A wise husband will avoid these situations by investing time with his wife, and taking matters to the Lord. After all, the marriage began in the presence of the Lord, in front of the altar.
Dear God, I pray for my wife to be able to depend upon me. Enable me to treat her as my 'top priority' item in my life. Give me the wisdom to draw the line and balance my work-home activities so that I may know when to set aside time for work, and that for home. Fill my heart with your divine love so that I may pour some out to my family, especially my wife.
Monday, October 6, 2014
Love is a secret ingredient in that divine recipe that keeps a husband and wife together. Apparently, this matters the most to God, and to a wife. When God created man and woman, he bonded us together using love as a glue.
1 Corinthians 13:13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
More than anything, love is that one thing that a wife craves from her husband. It is essentially the lifeblood that guides her, assures her, stabilizes her, motivates her, and keeps her afloat in a marriage.
The best example of a lover is Jesus Christ Himself, and that is what Paul teaches us. He urges a husbands to give his entire heart and life to his wife. The satisfaction one receives by doing so is immeasurable.
Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.
When it comes to the department of love, majority of men need some additional training. Those things that make a man loved are totally different from what makes a wife loved. It's not sufficient that we married a wife and are working hard to provide her, and buy her expensive jewelry - this can leave men puzzled and confused.
Pray to God to help you with your marriage. He is the one who created our wife. More than her, Lord knows about her. He should be the One who should open our eyes, so that we can see our wife in the light of love.
Psalm 119:18 Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law.
Husbands should learn the language and love and speak to their wives using the language of love. This is how a husband can fill his wife's 'love tank'. The first and foremost part is providing her words of affirmation. It is followed by quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service, and physical touch. Each item on this list is not a filler of the love tank by itself - they have to be adjusted in proportion just like how a good chemist creates an elixir.
Dear Jesus, you are the prince of love and have sacrificed your innocent life for the love of mankind. Teach me those traits how to love my wife. Open my eyes so that I may see the ways in which she wants to be loved. I pray that she may experience my love and be fully satisfied with it.
Sunday, October 5, 2014
In our castle, which which we call 'home', let us be a "knight in shining armor." The idea is to be that person who seeks God continually, with an aim of accomplishing noble deeds. Let us make noble plans for our home and display noble traits.
Isaiah 32:8 But the noble make noble plans, and by noble deeds they stand.
From a wife's perspective, one of her most important needs is that her husband to have a firm relationship with Lord. This makes her feel secure; she will feel like following you, and submitting to you. When she notices your heart belongs to God, automatically, her heart belongs to you. Winning the heart of one who lives with you day and night is valuable than conquering a kingdom. In the meantime, on a daily basis, we are to show special consideration towards our wives, as they are the weaker sex.
1 Peter 3:7 Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.
Hollywood and media seems to portray a husband as a rough and tough guy. Few TV melodramas portray husbands as a weak individual. To be that husband based on God's definition, one has to submit himself to God. A husband who submits to God will be of a different breed from that of a worldly definition. His traits will not be that of dominion, control, authority, nor of a weak one; rather that of Jesus Christ. Such a husband stands up for truth and fights evil.
Ephesians 6:10-20 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.
Be the man of the house. Show your allegiance and obedience to God everyday - especially on Sunday mornings. Be the first one to get ready for Sunday worship. Let your wife see how much you love the Lord and she will follow you. Make her feel safe and secure by being alert and aware about dangers that may befall upon the family.
Gracious Lord, I ask you to fill me with Your heavenly strength to be an obedient servant. Help me lead my family, and I pray that You provide my wife with the strength and wisdom to assist me. Give her the wisdom to guide our children on the right path, and while doing the chores at home. May she derive the energy required for her daily tasks from your divine presence.
Saturday, October 4, 2014
A mother's love for her children runs extremely deep and is unconditional. A father though he loves the children may not expose his emotions outward. It has has been that way since the beginning, and that's the way Lord designed the world.
Malachi 4:6 He will turn the hearts of the parents to their children, and the hearts of the children to their parents; or else I will come and strike the land with total destruction.
Our marriage comes first; then our children. When the priorities are reversed, we have a 'situation'. By spending time with our children, we are in turn loving our wife. Love her by caring for the children. Be careful never to dishonor or criticize her in front of the children or in the public. Such incidents will leave an everlasting wound in her heart. In fact, the best gift a father can give his children is to love their mother. Further, the best gift a mother can give their children is to love their father. The quote goes both ways, and children feel safe around the house when parents love each other.
There comes a time when it is required to take up the role of disciplining the children. This is something that has to be dealt with patience. Do not let your anger overtake your emotions.
Proverbs 23:13 Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you punish them with the rod, they will not die.
As a father, take up this role and do it as required and stop being passive to their activities.
Proverbs 13:24 Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them.
A word of caution here - while disciplining, fathers can almost cross that line. We are told to use Godly wisdom.
Ephesians 6:4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger by the way you treat them. Rather, bring them up with the discipline and instruction that comes from the Lord.
As husbands, we are responsible for heading the spiritual leadership at home. We should lead such activities in our day to day lives. God expects us to teach His words to the rest of our family.
Psalm 119:13 With my lips I recount all the laws that come from your mouth.
Home is your castle and you are the king. Remember - size of your castle should not matter; let your imagination create boundaries for your kingdom. Treat your wife just like a queen in your castle by showering her with respect in front of the children and others. Treat her with special dignity at the dining table - with kids and especially with guests.
Beloved Father, enable me to treat my wife with respect. Teach me the ways how Jesus encouraged others. I pray that my wife feels confident and secure in the presence of our children. May she use Your words and Your ways and bring up the children You presented in a manner pleasing to You. I pray for all the struggles she go through while raising the children, and may Your blessing bring strength upon her.
Friday, October 3, 2014
Girls are wonderful talkers and oh boy, they love to speak!
Statistics say that on an average, girls speak about 20,000 words a day, while their male counterparts speak around 7,000 words during the same 24 hour period. This is almost thrice, and is due to the effect of Foxp2 protien.
A wise husband should have already figured it out, or now is the time to learn so. What this entails is that women love to communicate and it is the role of a loving husband to engage in conversations. A husband's role is to be a good listener.
The best conversation is held when you truly listen, and it is the desire of every human heart to be heard, While she talks, keep your body language in tune, stay physically close to her and pay attention to what she speaks by looking into her eyes. Most of the times, she is just venting out and is leaning upon you. During these times, she is not looking for any practical tips or solutions; all she needs is her voice to be heard, and you being her husband are the chosen one. Just listen carefully and once she is done speaking, she will feel lot better. You won't have to utter a word unless you are probed with a question. Now, once she is done speaking, you can pray on that topic.
Speaking of prayer - it is our communication with God Himself. A humble heart is what He wants us to have when we hold those conversations with him.
Has not my hand made all these things,
and so they came into being?”
declares the Lord.
“These are the ones I look on with favor:
those who are humble and contrite in spirit,
and who tremble at my word.
Family prayers are times when we gather together as a family. As head of the household, the husband is responsible in bringing everyone into the presence of the Lord. Remember the saying, "A family that prays together stays together." Having regular prayers at home improves the overall mood within our house.
During prayer we speak from our hearts to our heavenly Father, and He seems to be listening to all our prayers, without uttering a single word. God speaks to us through His Word and guides us using the Holy Spirit. Most of us do not know what to say during prayers - never mind; God can help us in that area of communication too.
Romans 8:26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.
Communicate with your wife regularly. Tell her everyday, "I love you" in one way or the other - there are millions of ways to do so. For instance, leave simple and inexpensive love notes for her around the house - in her clothes, in the kitchen, in her purse, or even in the refrigerator - be creative. Spice those notes up using stanzas from love poems or movie pick up lines - these will give them an opportunity to think about it all day.
God Almighty, enable us to communicate with each other so that we may share our thoughts with each other and thus understand each other. Together, we desire to come into Your presence everyday. Help us become regular visitors in your heavenly kingdom. Provide my wife with a humble heart so that she may communicates with You and all of us in the family.
Thursday, October 2, 2014
When you are near your wife, take time to acknowledge her presence. Say, she walks up towards you. Since she is the greatest gift from Lord, take time to stare at her. Make her feel important than whatever work you are doing. You should utilize your eyes to focus your attention upon your wife. Our eyes are meant to notice her, and we should be able to convey the message, "I love you," merely with our eyes.
A wife is constantly trying to please her husband and is always seeking his approval. A nagging thought that goes through every wife's head is, "Does he still think I am pretty?" This is when you can look into her eyes and give that nod of approval.
Proverbs 4:25 Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you.
As they say, eyes are the window of soul. By looking straight into our wife's eyes, we can see her soul. When she does her hair, or tries on a new outfit, she is seeking that same approval - after all, we are the one whom she is trying to impress.
Luke 11:34 Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eyes are healthy, your whole body also is full of light. But when they are unhealthy, your body also is full of darkness.
Pay attention to your wife's eyes and should be able to tell if she is excited, happy, or being bothered by something. Eyes say it all - love, joy, pain, sincerity and truth. Though a wife may smile or laugh using her mouth and lips, her eyes are the one that convey the truth and the right message.
Proverbs 15:30 Light in a messenger's eyes bring joy to the heart, and good news gives health to the bones.
Encourage your wife to read the Holy Scripture. May she learn the Word of God. May she hide those Words in her heart and not sin against the Lord.
Psalm 119:11 I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.
As head of household, we should encourage our wife and other family members to lift up our eyes towards the Lord. He is our source of help at all times. This is a concept we should drive home.
Psalm 121:1-2 I will lift up my eyes to the mountains;
From where shall my help come?
My help comes from the LORD,
Who made heaven and earth.
Eyes are powerful organs God gave us. They can be so intense that one can choose to look away or to look into them forever. Eyes have the power to speak powerful language and sing sweet love songs. Practice speaking to your wife using your eyes. When you two are in a crowded room, talk to her from one side of the room with your eyes.
Heavenly Father, may my wife's eyes always be healthy. Let them shine brightly like a lamp. May she develop a love towards You by reading Your Holy Scripture. Let her be illuminated by your Word, and be basked in your light. May she raise her eyes towards you at all times and acknowledge Your daily help. Finally, let her reflect your bright light in whatever she does - both inside and outside our home.
Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Take a moment and recall your life before marriage - how much you longed for a trusted partner to share your joy and thoughts. Remember that young girl who left her home, siblings, friends and even her own parents to come join you as a life-partner? She came and stood in God's presence and promised to dedicate her entire life following you, and abide by whatever decisions you make - good or bad.
Let's go back to the Garden of Eden. The scene takes place when Adam was all alone.
Genesis 2:18 “18 The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”
The good Lord made a beautiful partner and suitable helper for Adam. His new creation was given to Adam as a gift.
Genesis 2:23 The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man.” That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.
Notice two things - woman was created from the bone and flesh of Adam and then the two become one flesh - a wonderful union.
No doubt, a wife is the most precious and wonderful gift a man can receive from the Lord. King Solomon echos this in his proverbs.
Proverbs 18:22 He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the LORD.
We are liable to treat our wife as a fabulous and wonderful gift from Lord. That is one reason we are going to pray for our wife. Let us be thankful for the wife God gave us and never take His gift for granted. While we pray for her, and love her, we want to make sure she is content, satisfied and happy. That everlasting happiness comes from God. Hence, let us pray that our wife is a person of prayer, and she finds that source of joy and satisfaction in His presence.
Understand that the two of you are one. Know that holding her hands delicately conveys the message of love and unites the two as one. Create occasions to spend time together as one. It could be as simple as soaking in the tub together in the evening, going out for a walk holding hands, or even holding hands during prayers.
Almighty Lord - Thank you for my wife - the precious gift you have entrusted in my hands. I pray that she finds everlasting joy in your presence and prayer. Help me lead her towards you in prayer. May her learn your word and find solace by approaching you first, whenever life presents itself with challenges.