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Monday, 11 February 2019

It's Time to be Your Husband's Best Friend

And so, we continue in our marriage gist and in today’s blog I want us to have a look at communication in marriage. There is so much to discuss when it comes to communication in marriage but today, I want us as wives to learn to be our husband’s confidant.
It is no gainsaying that most husbands find it hard to open up to their wives at home. In fact, it was one of the issues discussed by the male speaker at our last couple’s clinic program. Men find it easy to discuss issues that bother them much with friends and extended family members, but mostly not with their wives except for a very few of them. Now, if your husband is one of such people that would prefer to discuss his issues with other people rather than you is his wife and one who should be closest to him, then you need to start to learn to put yourself in the right place in the life of your husband. Other people are currently occupying your position in his life and it’s not their fault, it's simply because you let them.
One thing we as wives often overlook is that on more than one occasion our husbands have tried to discuss things that bother them deep in their heart with us, they have tried to be vulnerable before us, but the way and manner with which we handled that vulnerability has prevented them from trying it with us again.
As a wife when you notice your husband’s weakness (because everyone has one), what have you done with it? Did you absorb what you noticed and then take the issue to God in prayer or you tried to correct him and talk him out of it? Did you discuss with an external person simply because you could not handle the shock alone? Whatever you did with that information whether in secret or in open amounts to why your husband is finding it hard to confide in you or why you are his best confidant.
From my own experience in marriage, I have noticed that when my husband talks to me, sometimes he just wants me to listen, sometimes he wants me to give a suggestion and sometimes he wants me to act. But I have realized that most times he just wants me to listen. He wants to have in me a person he can talk to. Now the duty is on me to know when he wants me to just listen and not suggest or act.
In the same way in many other marriages, your husband wants to talk to you. He needs to pour out the load on his mind so as to remain sane, he might not necessarily want you to do anything about the information (other than to pray for him in your secret closet with him even knowing). Just listen to what he has to say. And sometimes he might be confused in a decision he wants to make and needs your help in arriving at a conclusion. Most times, your husband will not tell you why he is talking to you, he will just talk to you and then the responsibility is yours to know whether he just wants to talk, or he wants your advice or needs your action. When you act when he just wants you to listen, then you prevent him from talking to you next time and believe me you won’t like it when your husband starts keeping things from you.
Ecclesiastes 3:7b says, there is a time to be silent and a time to speak. And then Proverbs 18:2 says, “A fool finds no pleasure in understanding but delights in airing his own opinion.” In order to understand when to speak and when to be silent, you need wisdom and divine wisdom at that. You need to pray and let the Spirit of God fill you and direct you even when it comes to simple and ordinary things as little as communication in marriage. Because that very little thing called communication in marriage has led to very disastrous consequences.
It is as simple as asking God in your spirit man when your husband is talking to you, if you can speak or you need to just listen, and if you need to speak, then He (God) should direct your words right. I very well understand that you the man in your life is your husband and you should be able to chat with him freely, but in all things wisdom is profitable. You don’t take your spouse and the peace of your marriage for granted in the name of speaking freely. The right words at the right time will go a long way to give you a lasting peaceful marriage that becomes the envy of the world.
Then, I want to ask that, the information you receive from the communication with your husband, what do you do with them? I know so many times that my husband has come home to lament to me about things not working well on his job, and at such times I have little to say, but then my heart is praying. As soon as I can, I start to commit the situation into the hands of God, and I will not stop until he comes with the testimony that things are working fine again. His peace is my peace and we share the same joy.
I have come to understand and appreciate that I didn’t marry a perfect man and I don’t judge him. I take my time to downplay is flaws in the subtlest way I can, and I validate my husband and praise his effort. That way we are best of friends. He tells me things and he knows his talks are safe with me.
To get the best out of your husband in the form of communication, try not to be a judgmental or hypercritical, condemnatory wife. Don’t try to even show him his faults because even if he is not openly admitting it, he knows when he does something wrong and his conscience is already doing the judging, adding yours will be an over-do. Try not to teach him how to remedy the messy situation, when you do that you make him look foolish and he will resist it with a mindset that you are trying to control him. Men don’t like being told what to do by their wives when they didn’t specifically ask for your advice.
The first act of help you should render that will guarantee him coming back to you when he needs a friend to talk to is to pray and keep praying, then if you must act, you should ask God to lead your action into doing the right thing as against what your emotions lead you to do. This does not mean you shouldn’t help your husband in times of need, but it’s important that you help him in a manner that does not appear controlling or condescending. A lot of help can be done without your husband knowing you even did a thing, at least not till much later. But God who sees what you do in secret will reward you in the open. Don’t be the one to blow your trumpet at the expense of your husband, let God blow that trumpet for you. That way it's louder and more announcing. Communication in marriage requires wisdom and so as a wife you need to keep praying for wisdom to succeed in marriage. There is a place for emotions, but wisdom far exceeds emotions in making a marriage successful.
I will share a few Bible scriptures with you that will let you know the place of wisdom in communication as you relate with your husband.

Proverbs 17:28
Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent, and discerning if he holds his tongue.

Proverbs 14:3

A fool’s talk brings a rod to his back, but the lips of the wise protect them. 

Proverbs 16:24
Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.

Till I come your way again, remain blessed. 

Thursday, 31 January 2019

Let Your Husband Pick the Bills

You can listen to the audio version of today's blog on this link Just click on this link to listen

Hello people. First, I want to wish us all a very blessed 2019. May this year be a very prosperous one for us all in Jesus Name. May the Lord visit each one of us and meet us at the point of our needs in Jesus name. Before I continue to write, I want to explain that doing the audio version of the blog has been time-consuming for me and explains why the spacing of the blogs have been far apart. So maybe I will have to suspend the audio blog for now and then we continue with the written blog until I can perfect the inclusion of the audio blog. So this blog will be the last blog to have an audio version of it till further notice. 
And so in today’s blog, I want us to take a look at one of the big issues affecting marriages in our today’s world. That issue is finance. It’s a fast-growing phenomenon that wives are having to add the breadwinner role to the list of responsibilities that they have to carry in their homes and marriages. Now, I don’t mean any harm to the men folks and I pray that heavens will open to all husbands in this year 2019 in Jesus name. But I have had to encourage quite a handful of wives who say they are totally fed up with being the sole provider of their homes while their husbands contribute little or nothing for the upkeep of the family. 
First, I agree and hold firmly to the fact that wives are created by God for the purpose of being a helpmeet (suitable helper) to their husbands. Going by what we find in Genesis 2:18 God made a wife as a helper to her husband, in that passage we didn't read that God gave specific instructions on the area of the man's life where his wife is to come in and help. And so, we can conclude that in any area where a man needs help, God has provided his wife for him as a suitable helper. 
But in the case of the wife, helping your husband as God has ordained you to requires wisdom and divine wisdom at that. Proverb 24:2 says it is through wisdom that a house is built and then we read in Proverbs 14:1 that a wise woman builds her house, and so we know that building a house requires wisdom, but more so is it that building a marriage requires divine wisdom. Now, applying this understanding into the financial situation of those marriages with transferred responsibilities and roles, I will say that it is unwise for a wife to start to assume the breadwinner role simply because her husband is unable to pick the bill. 
I know you are the suitable helper to your husband but before you turn yourself into the principal financier of the family because of a temporary setback in your husband's finances, have you, first of all, prayed about it? Have you consulted with the God who knows the end from the beginning and has the solution to all problems? Before you begin to play God in the life of your husband in the name of helping him, have you prayed and God told you to start paying the bills? 
A lot of women are quick to swing into action and start to rescue financially without first of all praying (and believe me, I am also guilty). Now, this is the likely way it will play out. As soon as your husband sees that you have come to the rescue, he is relieved and grateful initially. Then he relaxes in his struggle because he realizes that his wife would always come to the rescue. And then, over time it stops being his responsibility and becomes that of the wife's. If care is not taken the wife will not just take care of the financial needs of the home, but also the personal financial needs of her husband and soon the burden becomes too heavy for her to carry. 
So you understand what I am trying to put across, let's take an example of a wife who has a help maid in the house, she will bother less about a handful of house chores in the home simply because she knows the maid will take care of it. As a matter of fact, they become her responsibility and not that of the wife who is the owner of the house. Even in some cases, the personal needs of the children move from being the responsibility of the wife/mother to the maid. In the same way, once your husband begins to perceive that his wife is capable of handling financial issues, he starts to withdraw and because we wives are more emotional than wise, we are quick to embrace the challenge as part of helpmeet duties till they become our primary duties. 
But note this, you are not helping your husband by carrying on his responsibilities as your own. Again, take for example you have a child who is not doing well in school. You sure won't go to school to write your child's exams for him/her simply because he/she is failing. The only logical thing to do is support the child to read well, write the exam him/herself and pass well. But you won't sit for the exam on his/her behalf. In the same light, it is not the best you start to pick the bills simply because your husband is having a setback. 
The ideal thing to do is to pray open heaven on your husband finances. Pray that God will breathe life into his work or business such that the income will be jaw breaking. Seek the face of God on his behalf and encourage him with words and continue to boost his self-confidence, till you are able to wake up the giant in him. If you can have faith and trust God to do the impossible in your life, then you should be able to trust God and have faith to do the impossible in the life of your husband.
This approach may sound mean and unrealistic, but it is doable for those who know how to trust God deeply. I once found myself in this same situation in the first few months of my marriage. Because I was earning more than my husband we had this unspoken understanding that I would be the primary financier of the family. But to the glory of God, I lost my job just a year into our marriage. Two years after losing my job, I was still the one sweating with the financial burden of the family even though my husband was working. In desperation, I began to pray and seek the face of God. I began to tell God that He should bless my husband and enlarge his territory and make him a full husband capable of handling all husband responsibilities. I fasted for him, made seed offerings in our church to God on behalf of my husband and I just would not stop. My prayer then was that, if I can't meet up with the financial burdens of the family, then God should lift my husband up financially so our children don't suffer. If I am not working, then my husband who was working should be able to earn enough to meet the needs of the family.
God faithfully heard me and my husband began to grow in his career. He saw a newspaper advert for a job and applied. He gave me the application letter to post for him, but before posting it, I knelt before God with the application letter held high and I prayed on it. To the glory of God alone my husband got the job. Ten years now on the job and he has grown to a very high position in the organization. And he is not just bearing the needs of the family but also meeting our wants. And sincerely, I am enjoying my life. 
I gave a talk in a church and admonished the wives that its time they begin to seek the face of God to bless their husband's finances such that what they, as wives earn, becomes peanuts and totally irrelevant compared to what their husbands are earning. In that way, your money big as it may seem to you, becomes too little to make any meaning to your husband. Consider this, what business will someone like Bill Gate have with his wife's income? As a wife, you are a helpmeet to your husband and not in competition with him. When you make efforts to pray the power and glory of God on your husband's finances, you are better off at the end of the day. 
The main focus of today's blog is that being a suitable helper to your husband does not mean you should take up his responsibilities and start to do them. That is not God's assignment to the wife. Your assignment is to do all that is within you to help your husband become the best that he can be. Taking up your husband's responsibility as yours will get him laid back and prevent him from personally challenging himself to be better than he is. 
If your husband requires your financial assistance and he asks you for same, please help him as his suitable helper but don't make it a habit of always jumping and doing what you should not be doing because you can't keep your emotions in check. When you do that, on days you don't have your husband will not believe you don't have and then he begins to pick up fights. Before you become the breadwinner, take a step back and pray. Don't start to play God in the life of your husband, rather pray to God on behalf of your husband that God will be God in his life and do for him and in him what only He (God) can do. When God is God in your life and every situation of your marriage you will not have any reason to grumble or regret.
Till I come your way again, remain blessed.