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“When I Shut Up, My Husband Heard God”

1013331_58271400I am so excited to share this wife’s story.  God blesses me with stories like this on a daily basis.  This is what makes ministering to women SO exciting.  I LOVE seeing God work in people’s lives, in marriages and in families.  It just never gets old.  This wife’s story will bless you.  Enjoy!
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On New Year’s Eve, we went to a nearby city to the Catholic Book Store (I needed the January edition of the Magnificat). My husband spent almost a half an hour talking to a nun and ended up buying a Bible.  He said he has been reading a lot lately about his role as the husband and the readings always quote the Bible and he wanted to be able to look it up for himself.  I take it for granted with my upbringing that I can quote scripture somewhat and have read much of the Bible. He has not.  While he has always attended church with us and joins in prayer at dinner, it has always been me that had led the spiritual upbringing of our family and home.
 
What has brought about this whole change in him?  Later at dinner I asked.  
He said
“You submitted.” 
 
So here is where I share with you a HUGE secret but I am bursting to tell people but if I do they will think I am freeking crazy!  On October 1st, after about 2 years of research and dancing around the idea of what a Biblical marriage is supposed to be (where the husband is the head and the wife is the body), I submitted.  
  • I stopped arguing with him.
  • I stopped telling him how to do it and when to do it and why to do it.
I used to be so frustrated b/c my husband did not lead.  I had to do all the scheduling and decision making- from what was for dinner to how I was going to get our many children to 9 different places all at the same time while he was working.  And he, with his passive personality (and a lot of emotional baggage from his first marriage), was more than willing to let me.  

However, it was not working because he felt left out and I felt overburdened.  

At first we tried to resolve this by weekly scheduling meetings on Sunday evenings to share calendars and reminders and generally plan the week.  We thought that “we” must not be connecting because we were not communicating.  But what became apparent is that I was removing him from decisions. 
He was coming home to find 18 extra kids at our house (our house tends to be the gathering place) and all he wanted to do was get a heads up or even the opportunity to say “Not tonight- I need some peace”.  After talking a lot about this in September (My husband thought it was a phase…) I handed him the check book (which he already took care of but I mucked up by spending whatever I wanted and thankfully we have good jobs that I can do this but it usually left him scrambling to move money from here to there so nothing bounces- another issue we went round and round about) and said “you lead”.
 

What we have found out is that when I started allowing him to be the decision maker (my new phrase is “ask your father”) he feels more involved and I feel less stressed.  

Bottom line is-
  • I don’t nag.
  •  I don’t demand.
  • I don’t lead.
  • I look to him to make the major decisions.
  • I don’t schedule social events without consulting him.
  • I don’t say, “Yes,” to the kids’ every desire without running it by him.
  • I don’t commit his time or family time without face time and discussion with him personally.

This is not to say I am still not opinionated… I still am who I am.  I am still a strong take charge person.

  • But he leads prayer before dinner.
  • He tells the kids what the tasks might be for the day.
  • He (big deal here) leads in the relationship with his parents (big bone of contention for me as I felt like I was always trying to bridge a gap that neither they nor him felt like bridging… so now I say “I will have to talk to your son” when his mother asks about something).

Because of this, he has felt more part of the family and more like a man.  

I have felt less stressed and more peaceful.  And I speak less (because I am not nagging- haha).

 
Now this has not been all smooth sailing.  We have had our ups and downs where I have stepped back into the “all knowing Mommy ruler” role and he as been all too happy to sit back and watch.  This usually happens when he does not make a decision quick enough… (he is working on his reaction time)… so I jump right in and make that decision for him… (I am working on patience).  
 
After 3 months we have realized it is not a phase and the outcome has been I have reconnected with my husband and HE IS SEEKING THE LORD AS HE LOOKS INTO HOW TO BE A STRONG LEADER TO OUR FAMILY (so he bought a Bible).  
 
CAN YOU BELIEVE IT??????
Can you believe that because I said “I will shut up and let you be a leader” that my husband is seeking the Lord?  That he went to Mass alone when the rest if the family was out of town?! That he bought a Bible?  When I finally shut up, he could hear God (and that is amazing).  
 
So there you have it.  
It seems nuts but I have to say, I have never been more happy or at peace.  It is simply beautiful.  
FROM PEACEFULWIFE:
God’s wisdom works, my precious sisters.  It worked really quickly in this case!  WOW!  
I am actually NOT at all surprised that her husband is seeking God now and that he is leading.  This is almost always the result, in time, when a wife obeys God and seeks to be the woman and wife He calls us to be.
What a beautiful story!  I am so glad this sister of ours was willing to share!

68 thoughts on ““When I Shut Up, My Husband Heard God”

  1. I was so giggly with excitement for this wife!!! I share your joy, sister! I am a Catholic Christian too by the way, 🙂 I experienced and am experiencing that same thing too with my marriage. When I shut up, my husband was able to hear God and is now able to make decisions. Whereas when I was being this noisy cheerleader (pompoms and cartwheels excluded) no matter how I ‘encouraged’ him to high heavens, he wouldn’t budge. But when I put down my megaphone and was silent and peaceful, he suddenly sprang to life!

    God is amazing! I am so happy for you!!! 🙂 I love that your husband bought a Bible and I love how he said his change was because, “You submitted.”

    My heart is happy with this story. Thanks for featuring it, April. 🙂 God bless us all.

  2. ” (and a lot of emotional baggage from his first marriage)”

    When I read that, that was a big turn off right there for me. Maybe he will read that Bible and realize that his current marriage more than likely is not covenant and he’s in adultery with the author of this article.

    1. Lynn,

      I have no doubt this man is a huge sinner. We all are, for sure. But, I do believe God is able to bring him to Himself and do something beautiful in his life and his wife’s life.

      I hope you will pray for them. 🙂

    2. Doesn’t the bible also say to stay where God finds you? What do you make of Jesus’s instruction to the woman at the well? Or the woman who was to be stoned? This is one of those points that I think many mature Christians have doctrine so ingrained that they no longer can see the big picture. Very focused on the lower story that they don’t see the upper story if you will.

      I have to respectfully disagree with you on this. That had such a tone of how the Pharasee’s would chastise Jesus for “getting it wrong”. I think we all know how THAT worked out.. 🙂

      Gail

      1. Gail, Jesus’ instructions to the woman at the well was to sin no more. So what does sin no more mean to you? People tend to turn a blind eye to the true definition of repentance. It means to confess the sin and give up the sin. If there are 8 scriptures that specifically state remarriage is adultery while the covenant spouse is still living, then what is the answer to correct that sin? There is no choice but to get out of the marriage that God calls adulterous. Remember John the Baptist lost his head over divorce and remarriage. Too many people claim that God forgives and He wants everyone to be happy. What about our obedience? God wants our obedience more than happiness. http://www.marriagedivorce.com

        1. Lynn and Gail,

          Jesus did say for the woman at the well to go and sin no more – and He gave the same instructions to the woman caught in adultery.

          Theologians cannot agree on exactly what is biblical in a situation where people got divorced and are remarried- and a lot of things depend on the specifics of each person’s situation – which we are not privy to in this post.

          I do not want to make any blanket statements where Jesus didn’t make blanket statements of judgement.

          Jesus didn’t tell the woman at the well to go back to her first husband. I don’t even know how many of her husbands were still alive.

          Here is what I do know:

          – God hates divorce.
          – There are many people getting divorced for unbiblical reasons today – that needs to stop in the church.
          – God is able to bring people to repentance and reveal to them what He wants them to do through the power of His Spirit and His Word.
          – God absolutely does want us to obey His Word – that is how we show we love Him. John 14:22-24

          I realize the Catholic church says that almost any remarriage after a divorce is adultery and the couple with the 2nd marriage should divorce or get an annulment.

          Annulments are never mentioned in the Bible that I know of.

          Other denominations have differing doctrines/beliefs on this issue. Personally, the whole topic makes me feel sick to my stomach – and I am not remotely qualified to tell anyone exactly what God desires them to do if they divorced wrongly and then remarried once or more than once and now want to obey God.

          The Bible gives two reasons for divorce that I am aware of:
          – adultery – but I believe that the meaning of that passage is that the woman committed fornication before marriage, and if he realizes this, he is free to divorce her. Matthew 5:32 That is my understanding after reading many commentaries about the original language.
          – abandonment – if an unbelieving spouse leaves, the believing spouse is not required to try to make them stay, but may let them go. I Corinthians 7

          Ultimately – we all answer to God and are accountable for obeying His Word.

          I know of couples who stay in their remarriage and repent to God and commit to living for Christ together from that point on. I know of a number of reputable ministers who support this – David Platt and John Piper.

          This is not an issue that we are going to resolve here on my blog. I can promise everyone that!

          I pray that each husband and wife might seek God, His Word and His Spirit and might desire to honor and obey Him in everything and that He might empower us to be faithful to Him, knowing we will each answer to Him.

          Much love,
          April

          1. You said you believed that abandonment was one of allowances for divorce, which is incorrect. The “not under bondage” clause allows the believer the freedom not to try and MAKE the unbeliever reconcile or to serve them in any capacity (slavery/servitude) if the unbeliever does not desire to dwell with the believer. Paul was very clear at the end of his teachings on marriage in I Cor. 7 that DEATH is what severs a marriage bond. We are commanded to stay single or be reconciled.

    3. Matthew 7:1-6. I live by these verses. It is very easy for me to point out the sin in others lives but God clearly tells us NOT to do that. Whenever I feel the urge to point out someone else’s flaws, I remember the sin in my own life. I lift that person up in prayer instead.

    4. Lynn,
      We clearly do not have all the facts of her previous marriage. Therefore it is wrong to make a snap judgement and quite foolish. Her husband may of died, or walked out on her to pursue an adulterous affair, or left and then sent her divorce papers. It was wrong to assume that it was because of something she did or because they just felt it was right. Perhaps you first should of asked why the first marriage ended or kept your nose out of it and just prayed for them instead. We all make mistakes Lynn. But God is the one who will judge in the end.

  3. Lynn,
    I don’t remember this wife mentioning that her husband’s first wife was an ex-wife. His first wife may have died, but not before they experienced serious problems, etc. This being the case, it would be inappropriate to make that assumption or judge them or their marital circumstances, of which we know only what we’ve been told. They are now experiencing blessings as a result of doing things God’s way in their marriage, and we can have complete peace of mind, knowing that He alone is perfect in justice, love, wisdom, and mercy.

  4. I feel that I am being led to release our bank account to my husband. I pay all the bills, track all the money, etc. I’m not likely the best steward of our money, yet I’m married to a frivolous spender. We have very meager means… Very very. We, like many others, barely make enough to cover our mortgage, groceries, tuition. Does anyone have any thoughts on the way to relinquish control? I have mentioned on more than one occasion (usually after a comment of how “I never know how much money we have” when he wants to purchase yet another frivolous item). Over the last 6-8 months, I have (finally) stopped telling him what he can and cannot purchase and he now doesn’t often attempt to spend money he knows we don’t have.

    I don’t want the control because this may be keeping our marriage misaligned with God’s word. My husband states that he doesn’t want control of our finances and he would mess it up and nothing would get paid. Are there steps to take? Do I honor his request to not lead our family? I thought of buying a calendar specifically for bills to write them down for him to give him a start. Most all payments are online and I could give passwords. Are there any wives out there that have accomplished this type of transfer? Advice would be helpful. I will continue to pray!!

    1. The following is a previous post of April’s regarding just such a situation! http://peacefulwife.com/2012/10/17/if-your-husband-insists-on-you-handling-the-finances-honoring-his-leadership/

      I am in a marriage where I handle the finances at my husband’s request. We have a budget mtg (10-15 min at this point) each week to discuss where all the money is going. Thus taking me out of “control” and making it an “us” thing. Yes I handle the details- but it’s clearly discussed and at first.. those mtgs took an hr! My husband dearly appreciates that I handle this portion of our affairs.

      It’s really a matter of prayer and how you feel led.

      1. Thank you so much! I think the meetings would be a great start! It is tough when they have no idea even what bills there are, much less when they are paid. I am clicking on link right now!

        1. Also, I hadn’t thought about what I am asking of him could be another way yet for me to control!!! Yikes. I don’t want to force him. It is hard to tear done these boxes we’ve built ourselves in within our marriage in this culture.

    2. Prayingwife79,

      If you “make” him take the finances and he doesn’t want to do it, that’s actually telling him what to do and will likely cause resentment. Nobody wants to have a task that they feel they are bound to fail at or exposes our weak areas.

      In our marriage my husband does the finances. I make the money, he manages the money. My strength / his strength. We do fight about money though. Not because he’s a bad steward of money but rather because there was no collaboration on the budget. I had no input at first. Nobody likes to be told what they can buy or when they can buy it or have someone upset with them when they spend money. Especially if they are working hard all day. Now part of that is my fault because I didn’t speak up and sort of tossed it over the fence at him. He does send me a monthly spreadsheet and powerpoint presentation which I almost never read. I skim it and nod like I read it. I’ve stopped doing that because it’s bitten me a few times. I do use the log ins from time to time just to keep informed but I don’t change anything.

      If you hand over something to your husband (by force) and it causes discontent in your marriage that’s not aligned with God’s plan either. I’m not really sure it matters who clicks the button to pay the bills. I think finances are one of those areas where you have to agree on a method of managing the finances and then who does what is so unimportant. What if the wife is a CPA and the husband is mechanic? Do you think he wants to handle finances? Maybe he wants to be consulted and informed and would like his CPA wife to be the doer. That’s ok. It does not make him less of a husband.

      Personal opinion here, I think in our effort to submit to and respect our husbands we probably do not want to pigeon hole them or try to turn them into “our version” of what a Godly man should look like or act like. Let’s leave some room for them to be individuals and not stereotype them. If I told my husband I was taking over the cooking for him, he would be horrified for one thing because I’m a terrible cook. And he would feel very disrespected because he would think I was saying I don’t like his cooking. Same if I told him to get a job and I was quitting my career because the bible says he should provide for his family, not me. That would not go over very well and we would both be miserable.

      If you want him to do the finances, prepare him for taking over the finances and making the financial decisions. Then when and IF he is comfortable with taking over the finances give it to him. But if he is never ok with taking over the finances let him know that is ok and encourage his leadership in other areas that are his strengths. Set him up to win and not fail. That will be an act of building him up and respecting him too.

      Just my opinion, I could be totally wrong.

      Gail

    3. prayingwife79,

      I have several posts about how different wives have approached this issue if you are interested. 🙂

      What I did

      The post MV talked about – that is for a situation when a husband insists that he doesn’t want the finances and desires his wife to handle the details.

      My friend, Kayla’s approach (which I believe was a lot more godly than my approach)

      And a follow up to Kayla’s approach

      Here is also one husband’s suggestions for wives during difficult financial times

      If he says he does NOT want to handle the finances – that is ok. You can tell him that you are concerned about your motives or about temptations if you have temptations to try to be controlling if you handle the finances. But if you are able to think of it as he has the final say, that you answer to him, that may help. Kayla addresses that in her post.

      But if he doesn’t want them, check out that post that MV suggested – it is a beautiful way to handle this situation.

      Just because your husband is not actually writing the checks doesn’t mean he is not leading your family. He is free to delegate responsibilities at his discretion.

      Much love!

    4. sigh. this is clearly between the Lord and you and your husbend. that being said, we need to be careful here. seems “relinquishing control” equals not doing anything. we are each gifted. if you are gifted in documenting the money and your husbend is not gifted in that area, it is a help to them. that doesn’t equal you controlling. we need to be careful with ‘not controlling’ translating into us no longer doing a certain thing AND THEN pushing it onto our hubend to do instead. that would still be controlling no?

      so, if your husbend has stated what you share above, then honor that, that is him leading no? and help him in that area. [my questions as i read your post, why are you insisting he take the check book? do you have an image of how him leading must look and that includes him doing the checkbook?]
      Have you gone through Financial Peace University? That was very helpful for us. I am the “nerd” and he is the “free spirit”. So, learning how we both operate and then working with both ‘inclinations’ has been a great help. I can do the numbers on paper, and then present it all to him in written form every week and hear what he thinks etc. This is respecting his strengths and weaknesses. This is a way i help him he says.

      1. Luann,
        Thanks for your insights! This is very helpful!

        Right – not being controlling doesn’t mean we do nothing and don’t use our abilities. It is mostly an attitude that we are no longer trying to force our way at all costs. And a trust in God’s sovereignty.

        In my marriage, I did get into trouble as I handled the finances, but it was because I was saying things like,

        – You CAN’T buy that.
        – You can’t spend that.
        – Why would you need that?
        – You don’t need that.
        – You can’t have that.
        – We can’t afford this.

        It would have been ok to share my concerns and feelings, but probably would have been better if I didn’t try to dictate to him what he had to do. Here are some ways I probably could have managed things better even if I was still paying the bills myself:

        – Here is how much money we have. Here are my priorities. What are your thoughts on this?
        – I know you would really like to get X. It is a great thing. I would love for you to be able to have what you want. I would feel really nervous and have trouble sleeping at night if we spent money on that.
        – What bills would you like me to make the priority?
        – Is this budget ok with you?
        – I’m getting frustrated with trying to figure this out, what do you think?
        – I think we could save a lot of money if we switched to this company. Here is the information. What would you think about that? (Then, if your husband needs time, let him think about it for a few days.)

        1. Peacefulwife-
          This is where I was! Often arrogant and controlling, I was telling my husband “no you can’t buy this, no you can’t buy that”. Frivolous spending or not (in my meager opinion), it set up further resentment from my husband and was a great act of disrespect on my part. I love the past posts you directed me to. I will study these and pray. I just want him to at least know our financial responsibility, even if he chooses for me to be the “check writer”.

          On a bright note: he just asked me what I was reading on my phone and I told him that I was reading about marriage and his to be a good wife and he said, “I don’t think you have any problems with that!” **sweet** I know that God has greater plans for us to continue to grow in Him, but that was a wonderful, loving thing to hear on a day that I was feeling less than appreciated and a little under the weather (the under the weather thing likely spurred the questionable appreciation). Love the blog, love the views from lots of ladies, and overall I love that the first and last resource is God and His word!!

          1. Prayingwife79,

            I also love that many different believing women share and comment here. And I absolutely love that we all desire to obey God’s Word above all else. What a precious sisterhood we share. 🙂

            Thank you for sharing about your husband. That was a special gift for him to give you such wonderful affirmation.

            I praise God for what He is doing in your life and in your marriage!

            I know He will give you wisdom with this issue.

            I love giving a lot of different wives’ approaches so that women have a variety of respectful options and ideas to choose from. Each marriage is unique. Each husband is unique. Each wife is unique. The way we show respect and biblical submission will vary in each marriage. So, to me, the more examples, the better!

            Much love
            April

        2. Just my opinion here.. Clothing, food, shelter, utilities are core necessities. Those must be met. My husbands clothing budget is up there too because he has to special order shoes and some clothes. He is 6 foot 7, 320 pounds and wears a size 15 or 16 shoe depending on the item. Even finding socks can be a challenge. I cringe when I see he has to pay $300 to order a pair of boots or shoes. But he has no control over his feet size or his body so we have to be realistic about allowing enough clothing budget for him. I mean, half the video’s you see of Bigfoot sightings are actually Mark camping. 🙂

          I haven’t been involved in our finances alot. Honestly, I’m not even sure when I get paid anymore. I got a raise in Aug and didn’t know about it until my husband mentioned it in Oct. So I am a bad example of how to stay engaged once handing it over to your husband. That has recently come back to bite me. My husband is still a good steward of money but habits form that become the norm when there’s no feedback.

          For example:

          About 2 months ago, I really looked at the report he sends me. He loves spreadsheets and powerpoints. I used to just skim through it, tell him if I had any major unexpected expenses and he would say Yes, we got it or No, we dont have it but we will on XX date. My husband was very good about that. If we do not have it he gives me an exact date when we will have it. I LOVED when he did that. Anyway, my husband loves to dine out. I am not a huge fan because I used to travel so much for work I grew tired of it. But he likes it so I would never say no. I was amazed to see that we were spending $1000 per month on dining out!! Sometimes more. I think that’s insane but I never paid attention in any detail, I did not realize I was saying “sure or that’s fine” that much. So, this became a habit. Mark thought it didn’t bother me because I never objected. Hence why even if one person is making the decisions or actually doing the finances the other should be informed or be free to voice their opinion on it. The very next month we knocked that expense down to $250 and we ate healthier.

          My husband has not work since July. His job was very physically demanding. I don’t think his body can take it anymore. He did not work the first 2 years of our marriage because he was in a motorcycle accident. I support his recent decision but only after the fact since he didn’t tell me before he quit his job and paid for classes. I don’t think that was intentional. Maybe he assumed I would be ok with it because I always told him how smart he was and that he was a brilliant “inventor”. My husband does not always come off to others as smart, but he is. He also has a big problem with authority. Not good I know but he’s a grown man and has to work out his own personal and work relationships.

          But in many areas my husband is literally a genius and does not realize it. But the fact remains that when we got married my husband carried in a lot of debt. Child support (past and current), car loan, motorcycle loan, credit card debt, etc.. Much of this from bad relationship decisions. I have no debt. I’ve never had a reason to acquire debt. I’ve been blessed enough to be able to buy most things as I want or need them for the last 20 years. I accept that it changes now that Mark and I are married, however, I never expected that his debt would become 100% my responsiblity.

          In his marriage and past relationships he was the sole provider. He will say things when he’s angry at me like he is never going to get a job because he’s “sick of supporting everyone”. It’s never happened with us. Even the 2 years he worked during our marriage I earned 3 X what he did. I have supported myself my entire life. I’m not going to lie, it really makes me upset when he says this. Because it’s blantantly false.

          I don’t mind taking a hit for the debt he brought to the marriage and I would never dream of defaulting on his child support. I made an assumption that when he quit his job and made plans to do something else that he took all this into consideration. And it looked like he did for 6 months in advance. The issue now is that after 2 months of classes, he just stopped. He just plays video games and watches TV since end of October. Things that used to be a “hobby” for us have become a lifestyle choice for him. I’m hoping it’s a phase, a slump or some kind of middle age crisis thing and he will snap out of it. Maybe it’s insecurity in changing or he hated the classes he chose. I have no idea and he’s not saying. Bringing it up makes him very defensive.

          But, there is a part of me that thinks, hey I worked hard for a career (while raising a child by myself) and work hard to support my family. And I was definitely not raised with a silver spoon in my mouth. More like a plastic spoon. I didn’t have the luxury to say, I just don’t want to work. So, I shouldn’t be dictated to but rather included in the decisions. I also don’t like to be nagged about spending. Especially if it’s about groceries or something like that. My husband is a big eater and will rarely come grocery shopping. Not my favorite pasttime either. Hence, he doesn’t understand that things rise in cost. And don’t get me wrong, I make more than enough even with his huge debts to support us well. Many of the financial issues he talks about would seem really petty to many people who have real struggles. It’s very exaggerated.

          Another part of it is his own undoing. Mark is 100% in charge of tithing. It has to be solely up to him and I don’t want him asking me about it. It has to his heart that guides that not mine. When our Church changed pastors, Mark’s been leary about tithing now and hasn’t been real consistent. We did not argue about money before that too much. And ironically we do not have more money, we have less because we have been hit with big emergency things around the house and with the kids. I’m just sayin that kind of choice has consequences that he can’t see right now.

          Call me crazy but I see familys much larger than ours make it just fine on far less than I make. So when he nags about $30 here and there that I may spend, it upsets me. But then I see stay at home wives who manage the finances and they nag and control every dime spent, is this normal? Is there really such a lack of appreciation in these situations where one person in the marriage works and the other manages the finances? And then on top of being treated like a child with an allowance there’s the complaints about working too much and not having any social time and how he is bored.. I don’t want to make that sound harsh but is it really fair to badger the person who is working so hard? I mean let’s say you worked hard and were tired from it and at the end of a month someone said, “Here’s $10,000” and your spouse gave you $40 of it and yelled at you if you spent more, would you not be annoyed? Would you think why am I working so hard to give them a good life when they care so little for me.

          Great! I just realized my husband acts like a wife! No offense ladies, but I do not want a wife. I liked it better when we both worked and came home to our respective roles at the end of the day. Back then I did not care if he helped with housework and we didn’t fight about money or being bored. He didn’t have as much time on his hands and he seemed to like himself a lot more.

          You don’t happen to have a blog or advice on that one do you? Either I am missing something about what he is going through or I can’t find what motivates him. He may need boundries but honestly I am not a good boundry setter. Even my management style at work is not one of micro-management. I don’t want to tell him what career choices to make or where to spend his time and so I don’t. I do however tell him that it is not a good thing to put 100% of the responsibility on me long term. It’s ok for 6 months or a year or if circumstances cannot be helped. But to make a choice or a decision to do it and then not following thru with the plan to balance it out again is not cool.

          Gail

  5. My husband and I just had this discussion today. I wanted to give up the finances as it can stress me out and he said as the head he would like me to be the bookkeeper. He said to just pay bills and keep him in the loop, but not to stress as he will make the financial decisions. He said he feels safe with me doing it and he trusts me to do so. So, since I have done them the last 17 yrs of our marriage, I will continue to. But, now I will do so with a different outlook and heart. 🙂

    Also, I am learning so much more about what my husband needs and desires as the head of our home and my husband. God is really opening my eyes to myself, my sin, and the good things I do, too. Even though this time in our marriage is hard, I am really enjoying it. God is doing a heart change in me that I have longed for for the last 17 yrs! 😀

    1. The Heartbeat of the Home,
      I love the way you and your husband handled this! I like how he wants you to let him carry the stressful weight as you handle the bookkeeping details. Then it is a win/win. 🙂

      Would you please allow me to share this in my book anonymously??

      Much love,
      April

  6. With all the talk of family finances, I just have to share. My hubby very definitely is the better money manager and he actually LIKES creating those spending sheets and such. He wants us to sit down at least once a month (my adjunct professor paycheck comes in once a month as does my half time teaching check; he gets paid twice a month) and discuss the spending plan. Unfortunately, what he seems to want is a rubber stamp approval on his plan. I am keeping my mouth shut about the areas where we disagree for now because I’m not grown enough in that area just yet. If I open my mouth, it will NOT be productive. Example – having gone back to work, I have a work wardrobe that needs some updating. I have stitched worn seams just about as often as they can be stitched and it’s time to replace some garments that have served me well but are just worn out! He looked at me the other day and said, “I can give you half of the clothing budget for this month. $25 should get you quite a few things.” I said nothing. “That is, it would get you quite a few things if you would shop at thrift stores.” We have two in our area. I am a plus sized woman. In both of our thrift stores, the only clothes I have ever seen for plus -sized women are mumus or “house dresses” (aka – look alot like a nightgown or robe!). Not exactly the type of thing I feel is appropriate to wear to work.

    For now, I stitch over worn seams just one more time, bite my tongue and nod yes when he asks if the spending plan looks good . . . I’m working on being able to voice my opinion without sounding like a nag but I’m not there yet!

    1. moj8668,

      There can definitely be a time at first when it is better to say nothing than to try to say what you want – The Frustrating Quiet Phase. Eventually, you will be able to say things respectfully.

      You could certainly say in a pleasant tone of voice, “I understand the budget for the month for my clothing. I would really love to get some nicer clothes for work. I’ve had trouble finding anything at the thrift stores.”

      And, you can also pray – God is able to move on other people to donate clothing or funding – so that would be a fantastic option, as well! 🙂

      Much love my sister! Thank you for sharing!
      April

    2. Go to cato.com. I am a plus sized woman and got skirts there the other day for less than $11.00 each. If they are shipped to a nearby CATO store, the shipping is free.

      I know what you are saying. I do a great deal of thrift store shopping. In your case, I would pray to God to make the $25 last. I always remember the story of fishes and loaves when I think that whatever I have will not last… it always does!

  7. The way my wife and I handle this is that I keep track of our finances, pay most of the bills online, make all decisions as to what we can and not afford. I do ask her to write any checks that need to be written, but to check with me before she mails them, so I know what’s going out.AS a rule, she has no idea what our finances look like unless I tell her, by her choice.

    1. This is my choice too. Occasionally, I will ask how we are doing on our savings, or paying off this debt but generally, I am content to discuss what funds are needed for the week in what areas (groceries, needs for kids etc…) and get cash accordingly. This has dramatically helped our budgeting in several ways. We communicate several times a week about what money needs to be spent where and we are only spending cash. This was not the case before…. I spent what I saw as “necessary” and he was left to figure out how to get the bills paid on time. Through prayer, I realized my actions of not spending my gains in a Godly way was sinful. It was, therefore, very easy for me to say “Husband, I asked you to take control of the finances but I don’t let you because I spend when I want to spend without consulting you. This is a sin. Please be fully in control of the finances. You are good at it. I am not. I look to you for your wisdom and guidance.”

      Some women think this is ghastly! I make more than he does! Yet, I honestly couldn’t tell you when my next paycheck was hitting the bank. Why? Because I trust him and he is better at money matters than me! Imagine that!! I not only trust my husband with my heart and soul, but with my finances too!! (smile)

  8. Your story reminds me a new catch phrase I hear this Sunday Morning. I was watching an interview with Robert Gates, the former Secretary of Defense for both Bush and Obama. Apparently, one of his favorite expression is, “Never miss an opportunity to shut up!” Thought I’d share his words of wisdom.

  9. I truly believe that both the man and wife should be involved in the finances. My father, who recently passed away, took care of everything and I mean everything! All my mom did was cook, clean house and look after the kids. When my father passed away, my mother was totally lost. She didn’t even know how to put gas in the car!!

    So, I believe it is dangerous to just turn everything over to one person. I have known women who were in the dark about finances, because the husband took care of everything. When their spouses died, they were either taken advantage of or they were left destitute, because they didn’t know their husbands were bad money managers.

    1. My grandfather also completely took care of my grandmother financially. When she died, my dad took over the checkbook. There were many opportunities for someone else to take advantage of her but my father was there to intervene.

      I agree that no person should be completely oblivious to the facts. I do also believe that if it is not my soup, I should not stir the pot. I am happy that my husband has a “recipe” in that we have a spread sheet with the bills, what has to be paid when, balances etc… so that if in the event something were to happen, I could pick up where he was unable to lead. Regular conversations with him allow me to know we are on the path to meet our financial goals and I am on all accounts just in case I need to access them.

      For me, that is how I am “involved” and it works very well in our marriage. More “involvement” on my part has led to more work for him and more frustration for both of us!!

  10. I also believe both should be involved and capable of handling finances.I also believe , and have taught my sons, that in the event of my passing, they are responsible for caring for their mother, and making sure she is provided for.

    1. Ted,

      I just think it’s great you taught your sons about finances period. That gets missed today. When my daughter was 8 she came to me and demanded a raise in her allowance because all of her friends got more. I told her I would give her that raise. And then I introduced her to FICA. Or MICA as I called it. I also made her fill out a return at the end of the year. She claimed her bunny. 🙂 On the upside when she got her first job there were no surprises!

      Gail

  11. Do you think it’s ever wrong for a wife to have her own bank account?

    My husband and I have a joint account that he controls. He pays all of the bills. I want no part of it, and he is good at managing that. A little more than half of my paycheck is directly deposited into that account to help with our bills and everything else. I have a debit card that I rarely use, unless he tells me to use it for something I need.

    I also have my own account that the rest of my paycheck goes into. That’s basically just my money. I have a daughter from my first marriage and so I pay for her tuition and school-related costs out of that, along with some medical bills (unless I’m in a pinch and then my husband always, always offers to pay). Also, I like to shop online and surprise my husband with gifts every now and then, so it affords me the opportunity to do that without him seeing the store names online when he checks the account and thus end up not surprised!

    He does tease me that we have “our” money and then I have “my” money. In serious conversations, he says he really is okay with this set-up, but then sometimes I wonder. And if we changed it, how would I be able to shop for him and still surprise him? That’s my only reason for wanting a separate account!

    1. Melissa,

      I don’t think this is a black and white always wrong or always right thing.

      The key, in my view, would be a person’t motives. This would be something to talk with him about. If he wants to have one account, then I hope you will have an open mind about that. You can still surprise him. I am sure you can get cash from the bank to buy him gifts as long as you aren’t exceeding the budget the two of you set. 🙂

    2. Melissa- this is how my husband and I started out- with 3 checking accounts- a yours, mine and bill account. Then we got rid of the bill account because it was obvious that my husband was doing triple work (I spent and he balanced). We did this for many years. It was just this past year that I realized this was just silly. He was really managing it all and he spent more time transferring from the account to that account etc… It was redundant. God showed me that one account would mean I trusted him completely to provide for all off needs. It would also mean more communication between he and I because we would have to discuss purchases and if the money was there etc… I think he felt really good too when I asked him to just do one checkbook. No longer a yours and mine. Only an ours.

  12. I see all the comments regarding finances. can someone give me some godly advice? What happens when your husband is reluctant to merge finances at all? He has his own account and pays all his own bills just as before married and so do I. We have an account together just of recent, so now there are 3 and it was done mainly b/c I asked and asked. That account is a joke basically b/c the money that goes in it every week from his pay is used to pay rent and the rest is taken out by him weekly for his own bills and errands (he pays all his bills in person or money-orders, etc. he is very old school when it comes to that kind of stuff). So as soon as the money goes in of his, it is taken out. his other private account also has a little money going to it, since he keeps it that way in order not to close it. Mine has all my stuff as it has for years and years. How do you merge finances or get your husband to feel comfortable doing that when he does not want to? I don’t like it. I think it is not biblical b/c we are to be “one”, which to me includes finances. He doesn’t like it b/c he feels it gets really confusing with money from different sources and paying different bills. Like I said, he pays all of his own by doing it in person or going to get a money order after work. So even me paying all the bills is out. I feel left out and like he is secretive. Is it wrong to ask him to merge if he doesn’t care to?? It makes me feel so separate and “single”. Sometimes we are in the store and we find an item and he will say things like “Oh I can give you 30$ towards it, if you can get the rest”. Makes me so mad and embarrassed! Im not sure if it is a trust issue or something more simple.

    Thanks!

    1. Shana,

      It is great to meet you! You can search my home page for “money” and “finances” and find several posts on this topic.

      My suggestion to you is to honor your husband’s leadership (Ephesians 5:22-33 and I Peter 3:1-6, Colossians 3:18 and Titus 2:3-5). You shared that you would like to merge the finances because you want to be more united as a couple. That is awesome! I totally agree with you. Now, we will pray together for God to direct your husband and to change his mind about this if it is God’s will. I believe it probably is God’s will. So, if we are praying in accord with God’s will and your motives are pure, seeking to honor God and bless your husband, God is totally able to change his heart and mind on this issue. And if he doesn’t, that is ok, too. You can still honor him and respect his decision.

      Ultimately, he will stand accountable to God for his decision on this. You will stand accountable to God for your willingness to submit to your husband’s leadership. he is not asking you to sin. So, you can focus on how best to respect your husband and to learn to become the wife God desires you to be and trust God to work in your husband’s heart.

      Please check out the posts at the top of my home page, as well. I think they may be very helpful. 🙂

My grandmother is on hospice and won't be with us much longer (11-30-16). I will get to comments when I am able to but I need to be with family right now. Thanks for understanding.

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