Be His Friend

Welcome!  I’m glad you’ve joined me for day 4 of this 10-day series, “How to Be the Wife He Really Wants.”

Would your husband say you are his best friend?

I may be a bit unusual in this area.  For the longest time, I didn’t consider my husband to be my best friend, and I doubted his friendship with me.

Good friendships take time to develop.  But our relationship shot off like a rocket. We met each other in February 2000, got engaged in May, and got married in November 2000.  We agree that we would have been better off waiting a little longer, letting our friendship develop first.  Our mistake was letting passion take first precedence. By our first anniversary, we sometimes felt like strangers because we hadn’t taken the time to really get to know each other.

We are also VERY opposite.  I am quiet, reserved, cautious.  He is vocal, uninhibited, and adventurous.  I prefer routines; he likes constant change.  I am often hesitant; he is confident to the max.  These opposite characteristics attracted us to each other.  I relied on his strength and he trusted in my softness.  But when it came to friendship in marriage, our opposite natures often pulled us apart.  Our leisure time activities didn’t overlap much, and we didn’t spend much time simply enjoying each other’s company, as friends do.

After our marriage hit bottom almost two years ago, we worked on becoming friends again, or maybe for the first time ever.

Take a look at this scripture:

A friend loves at all times. Proverbs 17:17 NIV

I really hadn’t loved my husband at all times.  I hadn’t loved him well when times were hard.  After late-night arguments I would lay in bed nursing hateful thoughts toward him instead of forgiving and confessing my own sins.  That toxic, unfriendly pattern needed breaking, and I began breaking it by loving him at all times.  The times when he was cranky, I gave him leeway because I knew his day had been rough.  The times he was distant, I gave him space and didn’t try to pull answers out of him anymore.  The times he was harsh, I forgave him and focused on communicating my hurt rather than criticizing his nature.

Listen to this quote by Les and Leslie Parrott from The Best Advice I Ever Got on Marriage, one of the books in the giveaway below!

 

Gallup’s research indicates that a couple’s friendship quality could account for 70 percent of overall marriage satisfaction. In fact, the emotional intimacy that a married couple shares is said to be five times more important than their physical intimacy.  So it stands to reason that we, as couples, can ignite our love life by boosting the quality of our friendship.

 

Marriage is like a garden; it needs tending every day to be productive and beautiful.  We are working together to make our marriage better, and we are cultivating it through friendship.

In the past two years, we’ve worked hard at developing a friendship in our marriage.  I’m grateful that he’s learned to listen and ask better questions.  I’m glad he’s being more thoughtful by helping me with chores and bringing me little treats every once in a while.  I’m thankful he’s complaining less about being opposite and trying harder to enter my world.

Here are three ways I’m working on being a better friend to him:

  • Modifying my stories.  I read a very helpful quote by Dr. Kevin Leman several years ago.  He tells wives to consider what they want to say, and cut it by 90%.  This was VERY hard for me at first, I’m not going to lie!  But when I think through all the details first, choose a few key passages, and share only the highlight reel with him, he’s much more receptive and responsive, and I feel heard.
  • Entering his world.  Even though his friends are not like mine, I no longer resist spending time with them.  On date nights I join him for drinks with his friends, then we go on our way.  He’s happier because I enter his world for a while, and I’m enjoying the company of people not in my immediate circle.
  • Laughing with him.  We both have a dry sense of humor, but he also has a goofy side.  I’m too serious, and I am learning to appreciate his lightheartedness as a unique gift from God.  I’m laughing more often because he tries so hard to make me laugh, goofy as he can be.
What practical step can you take today to be a friend to YOUR husband?  I would love to hear your suggestions in the comments below!

Join me tomorrow for Day 5, “Be His Creative Inspiration.”  And catch up on Day 1, Day 2, and Day 3 here!

Want more marriage encouragement? Enter to win THREE marriage-building books:  The Best Advice I Ever Got on Marriage, You And Me Forever, and $10 Great Dates!

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Photos generously provided by Lillian at Embracing the Lovely.  Visit her site for more beauty and inspiration!

Looking for Newness of Life in your current life season?

My book Newness of Life will help you apply Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 so you can understand God’s plan in your current season.

There is a time for everything,
    and a season for every activity under the heavens.”  Ecclesiastes 3:1 NIV

No matter what season you are in, God is teaching you valuable lessons to grow your faith and trust in Him.  We will discover what God is saying through the different times and activities we traverse.

Buy Newness of Life today!


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This post will be linked up at #livefreethursday, #heartencouragement, #thoughtprovokingthursday, #chasingcommunity, and #heartsforhome. Visit my linkups page to find links to these wonderful blogs.


 

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  • Love this, Sarah! Fortunately my husband likes to talk so I don’t have to cut 90%. We have been known to talk for hours. 🙂

    • Sarah

      What a blessing, Kelly! You’ve got a keeper!

  • Oh that 90% story-reduction is such a good one, isn’t it? Even in marriage, friendship doesn’t come easily. It takes intentional work and acceptance, doesn’t it? So glad to hear y’all’ve been able to rebuild. Lovely testimony, Sarah. Thanks for sharing with #ChasingCommunity today. ((hug)) –

    • Sarah

      Thank you Brenda! Always glad to linkup with you!

  • Mandy Hughes

    My husband and I, too, are opposites. It can be difficult at times, but God’s grace for us has taught us to extend the same grace to one another. The tips you listed are very helpful! I really resonated with the first one about cutting what I say way down. I’m not going to lie about how my feelings get hurt when I feel he’s not listening. What a great approach to still be able to share with him. Thanks for sharing, Sarah!

    • Sarah

      I hope that tip really helps you, Mandy! Thanks for your visit today.

  • Sarah – Great post. I don’t know why but I never considered applying this verse for my husband. A friend loves at all times. Proverbs 17:17 NIV . I will carry that forward.

    I also loved the 3 ways to be a better friend. I need to join his world.

    Maree

    • Sarah

      Thanks Maree! Visiting your site now.

  • Shannon Bauwens

    Sarah I am really enjoying this marriage series. Great advice and things to ponder on. Sometimes it is so easy to get caught up on being parents and daily activities the we forget to take time to work on marriage.

    • Sarah

      Thank you Shannon! I’m so glad you’re here! Just posted Day 5, and I hope you like the ideas in it 🙂

  • Melinda Wood

    I am always looking for ways to be a better wife to my husband. I stumbled across this post through a link up. So glad I did. 🙂

    • Sarah

      Thank you! Glad for your visit, and I hope you join me next week for the finish!