Love you all, praying for you,
I just love God’s Word. It gives good counsel. Today’s huddle is counsel for a New Husband. So if you’re about to get married, if you recently got married, if you will be married some day, or have been married for a while, you can still be a new husband. She might need one. We’ve been ministering to young people for quite some time. In fact the earliest ones are now in their late 40’s. Some time ago, a man getting married asked for my counsel on how to lay down his life for His wife. In asking God what He wanted me to share, here’s what He told me. Praying that you will sift the message through the messenger by the Holy Spirit. And may God bless you and your marriage.
How To Lay Down Your Life For Your Wife.
The first thing you need to know… she needs more than that. Some guys lay their life down, they’re all about their woman, fancy restaurants, showered with flowers and gifts and clothes, thoughtful, romantic, they make them feel special, like they’re the only one in the world. Some athletes are really good at it – they have a girl in every city. Your wife needs more than that.
Praying that you will Review the Relationship Topic - 11 Things You Need In A Husband. Ask God to help you become that. And start working on it today. And don’t stop until your 50th Anniversary, and then start working on it some more.
Other than that… here’s what your wife needs from you.
#1 Character. Be someone she can respect. Your job is to love her, her job is to respect you. But if you aren’t respectable, it’s really hard for her. She does it out of duty, not desire. Character. It has to do with being honorable, and bottom line… Are You Trustworthy? If your character isn’t something she respects… if she doesn’t trust you, laying down your life for her rings disingenuous. God said, “Above all else get wisdom.” It will build character if you act on it consistently. PRISM – Insight from the Word. If you soak in God’s wisdom, wisdom will become you. You won’t be like the fool at the city gate, with nothing to say. God will bring wisdom, and with it, wealth, honor, and life. Your character will reflect God’s wisdom, and it will make you the man she respects the most. She will then become the Proverbs 31 Woman that she was created for, as you encourage her and build her up in every way, and enable her to grow into all that God wants her to be.
#2 Vision. If you aren’t going anywhere, if you don’t even know where you’re going… why would she want to follow you? She needs you to lead. She wants a husband that knows where he’s going, that everyone respects, that she can be proud of. She wants a leader, not someone who tries to control her, or demand things from her, not someone who is always squelching her ideas, or vision, or her potential, But she needs you to hear from God… to know where you’re going, so she can decide if she wants to hitch her horse to your wagon. Some guys are all about their wife, they want to ‘lay down their life’ and it may work for a minute, but soon it will become vastly insufficient. She won’t want you to lay down your life, she will want you to get a life! That she wants to be a part of! No wife wants to the be only center of attention in their husbands life, they want to be an equal, valued partner, in a journey that is worthy of her lifetime investment. Get Vision. You can only get it from God. Ask Him to show you, follow where He leads you. PiVAT for this year, this month, and this week will help you greatly. It’s vision practice. See the PRISM Topic – Life Purpose & Direction. Your vision comes from God’s Presence, and His Word. Spend time there consistently, and you will always have the vision you need, the plans He has for you, even the details of the plan that she will want to join you in! You were created for a purpose. Your story is the best story ever – other than His. It’s the story you were created for – together! A story that God has designed for both of you. Stay close to the Source, and you’ll have the vision you need, and the vision she wants to join you in. Her vision is complete in yours together, just like yours is.
#3 Relationship. She cannot be your first relationship. If God isn’t first, she won’t really feel first. She may think she wants to be first, but she really wants to be second. Your relationship with God is the key to you truly laying down your life for your wife. If you haven’t first laid down your life for Christ, you can never love her as Christ loves the church. PiVAT – is vision for you. PRISM is steroids for your character. 4C’s is faithfulness financially – love for God, not money – it’s security for her. So she can follow with hope and trust. Daily Call – it’s how you get sharpened, so you grow in laying down your life for Christ, then for her, and it’s how you overcome the enemy – of your soul, and your marriage. PiVAT Small Group – it’s how you walk closely, transparently with a small group of others – provoking one another to love and good works. Their obedience and testimony will challenge you. Just hang out time isn’t deep enough for the most valuable friendships. Fellowship is important, developing friendships for this season and for life, that will encourage you in your vow to God and each other.
#4 Listen. She doesn’t want you to lay down your life, if you don’t listen. It will seem controlling, not real. If you don’t listen to what she says, she won’t feel valuable, and if she doesn’t feel valued, everything you do to lay down your life, will seem fake. It will work against you. Work on becoming a good listener, before you work on laying down your life. Listening is the key to communication, and communication is vital to a strong marriage. How do you listen? Make it your habit to ask a clarifying question when she speaks. It will let her know you are listening. She’ll feel listened to, honored, valued. It will help her clarify her own thoughts, so you can understand her even better, and it will guard against you just giving your opinion or trying to fix her. They hate that. ‘Tell me more’ is infinitely more valuable than “let me tell you what I think.” When you listen, ‘seek to understand, not be understood.’ And she will feel listened to. Listen for thoughts and feelings. How does that make you feel? Not when she just poured out her feelings. That will just make her think you weren’t listening. And learn to leave some things unsaid. You might know the obvious answer immediately, but now’s not the time. Sometime the best answer is silence, and a hug. Not a solution, or your opinion – everybody’s got one. She needs more than that.
#5 Be Correctable. Be humble, be willing to take correction from her. If you don’t take it, she will no longer give it, why bother, you aren’t humble enough to receive it. If you take her correction, and act on it. She will feel valued, she will feel like a partner, she will be glad she married you, she will feel honored. And you will become a much better person, and husband, and leader and influencer. God sent you a helpmate for a reason. You need one! And He sent you her for a reason, she is the exact one that you need. Her counsel, other than the Holy Spirit is the most valuable counsel you will ever receive. And if you are not humble, you will never receive it. Ask her for it, and then act on it. And you will get more. Demonstrate humility by being correctable. It will help you. If you won’t even value her counsel, then laying down your life won’t mean much to her. She won’t believe it.
#6 Sex is marriage. What? Marriage is more than sex. Maybe, but without sex, it’s not marriage, it’s just roommates. Marriage isn’t only sex. Friends with benefits isn’t marriage. But if you’re married, sex is the most important thing there is. It’s a spiritual bond that God created, it is the ultimate physical demonstration of oneness – after spiritual and emotional. God said your body doesn’t belong to you, it belongs to her, and her body doesn’t belong to her, it belongs to you. And you can tell a Godly man, verses a dog, by how he treats sex in marriage. Be about her, not you. If you’re good for thirty seconds, that is not the marriage that God intended. Hardly what she has dreamed of. The first thing you need to know about sex. Sex starts in the kitchen. For women sex is an experience, a relationship, not an act. This culture has trained women, to think they’re equal to men by being duped into transactional sex. It’s not true. Sex in a marriage is what is uniquely yours together. From the day you get married til the day you die. It is vital in a marriage. If your sex life sucks, your marriage sucks. If your sex life is great, you can continue to work on your marriage. Marriages don’t work among selfish people. Sex life doesn’t work among selfish people. Be selfless in your sex life with your wife. This is really about her. You’re good no matter what… Don’t rob her of the mutual benefit, she wants to please you as well… but be about her, learn what brings pleasure to her. Talk about it. But sometimes there can be too much talking. No woman wants a husband who asks permission about everything. And stop talking about being romantic, if you have to tell her you’re being romantic, it’s not romance, you’re just a nerd. Learn what sweeps her off her feet, and do it. Sometimes you just need to lead, and learn what makes her feel the most valued. You don’t need any outside training in your sex life. Discover the joys of what God created sex to be – together your wife – you’ve got plenty of time – a lifetime. You don’t need to imitate what the godless do. That should never enter your marriage. You won’t get better at sex by learning from Bubbles and Bambi. Inappropriate in a Godly marriage. God will lead you together. You will discover new things in your sex life for years to come. In fact, if you haven’t had sex with just one woman (your wife) for at least twenty years, you don’t know anything about sex. God created sex to be the number one thing in marriage, because it’s what you share with only one other person in your lifetime, your wife or your husband – it’s what makes you one – not the marriage certificate. The sexual relationship between husband and wife, reflects the intimacy that God desires for his bride the church. That’s not weird, that is spiritual, not physical in nature, it’s spiritually discerned. God created sex for procreation, and pro-relation. It’s not just to make babies, it’s to make a great marriage. Ask God to lead your sex life, talk about it. Honor and serve each other. If you’re going to lay down your life for your wife, be sure you do it in this area. She deserves it – she has to put up with you, and she’s stuck with you. Become someone she wants to have sex with, so your sex life is always getting better. It’s what God created marriage to be. (And the last thing that should go without mentioning. Your sex life is none of anyone else’s business. That’s between you and her and God. Honor the marriage bed, keep it holy – set apart, and God will bless it and bless your marriage with it.
#7 Security – Make sure what you do as a husband always has her feeling secure in her life and in your love. Some guys are so busy pursuing their wants that they sacrifice their wife’s security. No, you don’t need the sports car right now, or the boat, or motorcycle. She needs to live in, and have your kids live in, a safe neighborhood. The first thing of security is physical. Don’t live in the hood. If she doesn’t feel safe, you need to work to provide a safe place to live. God does it not you, but she needs to feel safe. #2 Don’t take her places where you cannot protect her. You have no business in the hood at midnight, it doesn’t matter how nice the restaurant or how good the club is. That’s not where you should be or take your wife to. Her safety is your responsibility. #3 Be aware of your surroundings. You can’t protect her against three or four guys. You aren’t Joe Frazier. Don’t take her public places where security could be absent. That’s on you. #4 Financial Stability is an important part of her feeling secure and protected. It’s not how much you have in the bank. Are you living on less than you make, and most importantly - Do you know where God’s Money is, so you can do what He tells you to do with it? If not, money becomes a ‘he said, she said.’ Sex and Money are the two biggest things in marriage – that will make or break it. Divorce is 95% one of those two things. A 4C’s Tool is vital. You need to be faithful with God’s money – you need to ask Him, and obey with money together. If you do, she will feel secure financially. Don’t spend all that you make, only a fool does that. God says save for the future. God has not called you to live paycheck to paycheck, He’s just called you to obey with every financial decision. It will help her feel secure. Make giving - a heart priority. If you give, your life will be full of joy, and God will always make sure you have enough. Become a hilarious giver, it’s part of what will guarantee her financial security for a lifetime. Additionally - Protect her emotionally. God says honor her as the weaker vessel, not less valuable, she’s a treasure. Protect her from attacks emotionally. People are selfish, and will always try to manipulate or control you. Don’t let anyone do that to her, not even her friends or family members. Always stand up for her. Set boundaries. And do not let anyone cross them. Anticipate potentially detrimental circumstances, or entanglements, and reject them. Some relationships may need to be curtailed, or ended completely. Do not allow any relationships that drain her. God has better. Protect your wife, physically, financially, emotionally. It’s your job.
#8 Non-Negotiables. What are non negotiables in your marriage? Talk about them. A few suggestions. #1 Hedges - See the Relationship Topic – Hedges. A vital thing to honor your wife or husband. Is Hedges for your marriage. It’s not overkill, it will save your marriage from sure destruction. #2 Never… ever. Tell a joke at your wife’s expense. Any guy who slams his wife, or her cooking, or anything she does or isn’t good at yet, is a piece of garbage. You would really embarrass your wife, for a cheap laugh from people that don’t care one bit about you, they care about themselves. Whoever does that isn’t deserving of a wife, much less the treasure that God gave you. Never make a joke at your wife’s expense in public. You can tease each other in private, but even then… be very careful. Your words either build or tear down. Your wife is a part of you – the most important part – why would you ever cut her down. Senseless. Instead, go out of your way to avoid any embarrassing situation. You should see it coming. Protect her, by avoiding the conversation altogether, change the subject, redirect any attention toward her that would make her feel awkward or embarrassed. Be like the mother bird, that captures the predator’s attention and draws them away from the one they love. That’s your job. Another thing, the four-letter word you should never use… Divorce. It’s a curse word even more than four letter words are. It should never be in your vocabulary. Burn the ships. That’s not an option. Ask God to reveal for you what your non-negotiables are in your marriage. He’ll show you – it will be a blessing. You’ll honor each other by them.
#9 Words. Your words bring life or death. No one wants to be married to a husband that always sees the glass half full. I’m just realistic. No, your negative. It’s a drain, a downer. It is adding to her burden, not taking her burdens from her, it’s adding to – not lightening her load – which is your job to do as her husband. She’s not your shrink, she’s not your mother, it’s not her job to prop up your fragile self-esteem. Your identity should be in Christ – He’s the Overcomer. She’s your wife. Don’t let negative words come out of your mouth. Always speak life. What you speak – creates her life, not just yours. Not only do you get what you say, she gets it too. She’s stuck with you. Love her enough to speak life. (See the PRISM Topic – Speak Life, Say, As For Me) Create a life for her with your words that is faith, hope, love, and joy. She lives the life of your words. They will accelerate her, or shackle her, they will keep her bound, or set her free. Let your words be life.
#10 Date Your Wife. Set time and money aside to just go out and do something outside of every day life. It doesn’t have to be expensive. Just because you got her to sign the marriage certificate doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still pursue her. Doing things together that are fun and regularly scheduled, give you both something to look forward to. Shared experiences deepen your relationship. Get creative – she will appreciate the effort. Learn to date your wife.
#11 Give Her Space - She needs interests and pursuits that don’t require you to be there. Things she does just for her, that God is calling her to. And friendships with other Godly women, who spur each other on to love and good works. Give her space for reflection, and interests that allow her to flourish. You don’t have to be there for everything. When you get back together – you can share with each other, and always encourage her in the things God has gifted her in, and is calling her or drawing her to.
Finally – Remember… Love is a language. The best way to lay down your life, is to love her in her language, not just yours. Learn her love language, but love her in all of them. (The Five Love Languages by Gary Smalley) Be intentional. It might just seem that you are going through the motions. But if your heart is sincere, that will quickly fade. Just like a date night that is scheduled, doesn’t make it less of a good experience. Schedule times with your wife whether dates, or intimacy, and be intentional about loving her in her primary love language, but also in every one of them as well.
Praying that you will lay down your life for your wife, like Jesus lays down His life for the church. That you will know that she needs more than that. That you will become the husband she has always dreamed of. That she will always be glad she married you. That she’d do it again! God has a marriage for both of you - like no other. You can have the best marriage ever! Your kids and others are watching, as well as a great cloud of witnesses. Other than Salvation and the Holy Spirit, she is the best gift God has ever given you. No investment in her is too great, or not worth it. She’s invaluable.
Love you all,
Kelly Kamentz - Jesus follower, husband, father, and friend, helping others surrender time, thoughts, money, and testimony, to fulfill their purpose!