She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Proverbs 31:27
We are on Day 13 of The Respect Dare. If you have gotten behind, don’t worry! Just take one dare each day. You will finish a few days after I do – that is not a problem at all. 🙂
WHAT IS THE BREAD OF IDLENESS FOR YOU?
For me – there are some things that definitely qualify as “the bread of idleness.” I am not great at “moderation.” I personally am much better at ALL or NOTHING.
- tv – I actually try not to watch it at all anymore!
- Facebook – I can definitely waste a TON of time there, I have to be careful with that.
- fiction books – If I start reading a good book, I will sit there for hours reading and won’t put it down.
- the phone – I try to spend very little time on the phone myself.
This is where it gets tricky. If I am not careful, I can get so involved in MINISTRY that I neglect my husband, children and home. Emails from hurting women, comments on my blog, writing just one more post, or working on a book – is that book even God’s will? I am not totally sure yet!
I have to consciously pry myself away from blogging, emails and ministry and carefully balance my time to be sure I take care of my chores, my children and my husband. Otherwise, I would happily sit all day at the computer. I LOVE ministering to women. I believe God wants me to do this ministry.
But I have to be VERY careful to keep the proper balance or I could easily allow ministry to take over my life. I must be sure to keep my husband as my primary ministry and then my children – then others.
Is ministry the “bread of idleness?” Ummm…. not really. But if I am allowing ministering to others outside of my husband and children to take my energy away from them – I have a big problem.
- I MUST BE SURE I AM FIRST SAYING “YES” TO MINISTERING TO AND HELPING MY HUSBAND IN THE WAYS HE NEEDS ME.
- THEN I MUST BE SURE I AM SAYING “YES” TO MINISTERING TO AND HELPING MY CHILDREN IN THE WAYS THEY NEED ME.
- AND I MUST BE SURE I AM CARING PROPERLY FOR OUR HOME.
- THEN I CAN FOCUS ON MINISTRY TO OTHERS.
WHEN MY HUSBAND ASKS ME TO DO SOMETHING
My goal is to try to say, “YES!”
If it is important to him, I want to make it important to me, too.
- Is there an area of the house that your husband has asked you to organize that maybe you have been neglecting?
- Is there some chore that your husband has asked you to do for him – and you have been putting it off?
- Is your home in order?
- Are there activities that are consuming too much of your time and depriving your husband and children from having enough of your time and attention?
- Is there something your husband wants you to give up? A job? A hobby? A volunteer position? A ministry position? Maybe even a friendship? Is it possible that God might be trying to lead you through your husband about this issue? Please prayerfully seek God’s will and to honor Him and your husband’s leadership.
- Does your husband know that he is your primary human priority – second only to God? If he feels that other activities are taking you away from him, please listen and hear his heart and ask him to help you decide what things you can take off of your plate so that you can be more available to him and your family.
(If you have serious problems, physical abuse, infidelity, drug/alcohol addictions, uncontrolled mental disorders going on in your marriage – that goes beyond the scope of this blog- please find experienced, godly, qualified help ASAP!)
Help us to truly see what Your priorities are for us in our family and in this season of our life. Help me to get rid of things that are not of much eternal value that are keeping me from spending the time I need to spend with You, and my husband and my children. Give my husband wisdom to see the things that need to go and help me to have the strength and courage to honor his leadership in these decisions.
Let me truly become my husband’s helpmeet. Let me orient my life first towards You – but then towards him and let me be a blessing to him each day. Show me how I can best help him in ways that are meaningful to his masculine needs. Help me to protect my time with You, my marriage and my family time and help me to say no to things that are not Your best for us.
In the Name and power of Christ,
HOW TO SAY NO:
When someone asks you to do something if you know you can’t fit it in, simply say, “I can’t.” (Laura Doyle The Surrendered Wife) If they keep pressuring you, keep repeating, “I am so sorry, but I just can’t.” DO NOT give them reasons why! They will shoot those reasons down if you do. Just say “I can’t.” They will eventually accept your answer!
If you are not sure if you should say yes or no, say, “Let me check with my husband first and get back with you.”
If your husband says, “no.” You have your answer. You can tell him if it is something that is really important to you. But it is VERY easy to overcommit ourselves to activities that aren’t truly that important. And sadly, when we are too busy, we miss the things that are MOST important – our time with God, our husbands and children.
Let’s be VERY protective of our time with God and our husbands and children. Let’s be willing to say no to lesser things.
BEING A TRUE HELPMEET:
Ask your husband once a week, once a day – “What can I do for you today?” “How can I make your life easier today?”
Then try to do it! 🙂
Not expecting a big response from him – but out of reverence and love for Jesus, with a true servant’s heart, just to bless your husband.
Maybe he’ll ask you to
- make him his favorite meal
- relax with him and watch tv with him
- take his dry cleaning to the cleaner’s and bring it back
- make some time to be intimate with him
- take a nap so you can be at your best for him later
- tidy up the hall closet
- have the house in order when he comes home and the kids under control
- have the kids go to bed by a certain time
Whatever it is – seek to have a willing spirit to do what he asks.
If your husband is asking you to clearly sin or condone sin, please do not say yes to him! If what he is asking you would cause you physical harm – you may have to say “I can’t.” If you believe that he may be seriously emotionally abusive – please seek a godly, Christian, experienced counselor. There is no way for me to address severe issues here – I am not a counselor or pastor. Those things go beyond the scope of my blog. They are not out of the reach of God, however!
Check out Nina Roesner’s blog for books that may help if you are a victim of abuse.