Welcome! I’m glad you’ve joined me for the final day of this 10-day series, “How to Be the Wife He Really Wants.” Read on to see what’s next, in time for Lent!
Do you know your words show how you are an advocate for your husband?
An advocate speaks on someone else’s behalf for their betterment. They fight for the rights of someone who needs defense, who needs protection. The way you speak about your husband to others is key to becoming the wife he really wants.
Your husband knows he’s not perfect. He knows he’s not as emotionally complex as you are. He doesn’t want those faults broadcasted to others. Not to your mom, sister, best friend, or Bible study members. Your husband wants you to be his advocate, not a judge who picks apart his performance in front of an audience.
Oh, I lament how many times I spoke ill against him out of my frustration and lack of understanding about the differences between men and women. I deeply regret “venting” about his faults so widely and so thoroughly. Sharing my problems with a trusted friend or two would have been fine, to gain relief and help. But complaining about him everywhere I went was a damaging blow in the early years of our marriage.
Here’s a great quote by Joni Eareckson Tada, from the book The Best Advice I Ever Got on Marriage:
Since those early days [of her marriage], I’ve made it a habit to watch my words. Scripture has lots to say about our bodies, but no body part gets quite the attention as the tongue. For example, Proverbs 18:21 says, ‘The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.’ With our words we either beat the life out of our marriage or we cultivate, feed, and water it to ensure happy years ahead.
I had to learn that my words about my husband held either life or death for our marriage. I had to quit the pattern of griping about him to my family members and friends. This took practice, because the habit of griping about him was so deeply ingrained. In time, and with God’s help, I was able to overcome this bad habit. Every time we were around others, I thought of a specific way I could praise him. When I replaced my critical words with constructive words, my husband flourished.
Serving as your husband’s advocate shines God’s light in our culture. Turn on the television during prime time and notice how almost every show and commercial paints the guy as a doofus and a punching bag. Criticizing men has become a horrific national pastime. Ladies, let’s show how Christians are different in this area. We can make a concentrated effort to speak well of our husbands everywhere we go, and show the world Christ through our example.
I love this quote from Francis Chan in You and Me Forever on the powerful example of a countercultural, Christ-centered marriage:
This is how our lives should look. We are filled in Christ. Beyond filled. Overflowing. So we turn to the people around us and share the abundance of love, peace, joy, and life.
Here’s a blueprint for marriage:
- We become overwhelmed by Christ’s care for us.
- So we shower our [spouses] with the same love we receive from God.
- Then, people are shocked by our extravagant love toward our [spouses].
- As a result, we are given an opportunity to tell them about the love of Christ that compels us.
Let’s shock our family, friends, and acquaintances by our extravagant words of affirmation about our husbands. Let’s let them see Jesus through our words.
Here are three ways I’m serving as an advocate for my husband:
- Speaking well of him to our children. I am working hard to say something positive about their dad every day, especially when he messes up. My children’s affection for their dad has grown since I replaced stinky words with sweet-smelling ones.
- Speaking well of him at work. In my conversations with my friends at work, I intentionally say good things about my husband. I no longer fall into the trap of man-bashing.
- Speaking well of him to his friends. We have a date night tonight, and we’ll probably spend a little time socializing with his friends first. I have found this is the most powerful venue for me to speak well of my husband. Those guys are hungry for positive examples of wives who build up instead of tear down.
What practical step can you take today to serve YOUR husband as an advocate? I would love to hear your suggestions in the comments below!
This post will be linked up at #dancewithjesus, #faithnfriends, #freshmarketfriday, and #graceandtruth. Visit my linkups page to find links to these wonderful blogs.
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