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Encouraging Our Husbands to Be Men of Courage – by Nikka

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Nikka
From my precious sister in Christ, Nikka, from the Philippines. You can find her at www.peacefulwifephilippines.blogspot.com
1. Live a virtuous life.
Kind words and gestures can soften a hardened heart than any harsh word or judgmental remark towards another can (Proverbs 15:1). As wives, we are encouraged to be “pure” and “reverent” not only to our husbands, but most importantly to God. We must strive to always bless our spouses with words and in deeds.
  • Actions speak louder than words.

If you are married to a believer, your own Christ-like behavior will further encourage your husband to deepen his relationship to God. 

If you are married to a non-believer, your own Christ-like behavior will encourage your husband to want to know the Reason behind your loving words and actions. It will encourage him to also want what you have — that is, a relationship with Jesus Christ –– in his own life.

My husband Dong noticed a change in my behavior just a few short weeks after the Lord regenerated me and created a new Nikka in September 2013. So much so that he said sometime in October last year that:

“I am enjoying this, whatever it is you are doing. I am reaping all its benefits. I wish for more married couples to experience this. I want you to blog about your journey. Write your own version of the Peacefulwife’s blog for the Philippines. Our country is in dire need of role models to follow. I am sick and tired, too, of hearing about husbands and fathers saying that the worst thing that can happen to a man is to get married and have kids. Why do most men feel that way? Shouldn’t we feel happy that we got married and have children?”

 
2. Practice self-restraint and let your husband lead.
A man will feel more manly if he is allowed to act and think like a man. A wife wearing the pants in the marriage and ordering him around does nothing to encourage and affirm his manhood. In fact, it emasculates him and demotivates him to fulfill his God-ordained leadership role in the family.
My husband Dong clearly got badly affected by my controlling behavior, before the Lord regenerated me and showed me the error of my ways. Below are some of the things he emotionally told me in various occasions:
“It is not that I am not doing anything. I am just confused and paralyzed as to what to really do. Since you are doing so well, I feel that my own contribution would be useless.”

“I don’t know why I am like this but if you are doing something already, I feel like I should just support you. Parang gumagalaw ka na e, ikaw na muna. (You are already moving, so I just let you lead.) “

“I don’t know what my role is in this family anymore! Siguro dapat umalis na lang ako (Maybe I should just leave!)… but I pity the kids, they need me.” 

“All of these are your choices! If I were in charge, we’d still have a good life, but maybe a simpler one! You think I cannot lead our family? You think that you can do everything by yourself! Masaya ka ba na ako nasa baba tapos ikaw nasa taas, di tayo nagtutulungan? (Are you happy that you are on top and I am left below, and we are not helping each other?)  Shouldn’t marriage be about helping each other?

 

We must let our husbands lead us. The way to encourage them to become the men of courage God wants them to be, is by being the woman in the marriage. By this, I mean, to step aside, let God work in your husband, and focus on your own role — that is as his helper and supporter, not his boss or leader.

                                                      Bible Verse to Live By:

Titus 2:4-5

4 and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, 5 to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.

3. Be his best friend and prayer warrior.

Why is it so easy to forgive or look over our girl friends’ faults but so hard to not judge our husband’s failures? By virtue of marriage, we are ONE with our spouses, which is not the case with our friends.
We do not have a covenant with our friends, although Jesus did teach us to “love your neighbor as yourself” (Mark 12:31). Why then is it so hard to apply this to somebody whom we promised “to love and to cherish, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, till death do us part.”? It does NOT make much sense, right?
 
It is easier for us to excuse the faults of others, but we are very, very quick to condemn our husbands!
 
In order to encourage our men to be men of courage in the home, we cannot be their worst adversary. The home should not be a battleground or a hell house, where even before they step inside its premises, our husbands would first have to breathe in and breathe out, and say, “Alright, here we go again…” as though they would rather be anywhere else but home! 
 
It should be a respite from the daily stresses of life; a welcoming embrace; and not THE most stressful part of their day; a penance! They should have the COURAGE to fight for their wives and families, NOT the “courage” to emotionally wrestle and fight with their wives who constantly berate them!
 
Cultivate a deep friendship with your husband who (if both of you are lucky), would be with you for many, many years still. What would you rather do, sleep with your enemy or sleep with your best friend (Assuming that your husband is your best friend.)?
And more than simply developing a friendship with him, you should also be his prayer warrior. We should always pray for our husbands. Since we are one with them, praying for them is also praying for ourselves. Let us always maintain a spirit of humility whenever we do lift our husbands up in prayer, and not a judgmental, self-righteous attitude. Prideful hearts are opposed by God, and so don’t be surprised if one’s “prayers” are not heard or answered when in this sinful state.
Just recently, my husband shared with me his heart, saying:

“What I love about us is that we are the opposite of each other. We help each other become better people. What I lack, you have; what you lack, I have — so we learn from each other all the time. It never gets boring. I wouldn’t want to be with somebody who will just say “yes” to what I have to say all the time. I want somebody with substance, who can contribute to my improvement.”  

 
Bible Verses to Live By:

Ephesians 4:2-3

2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. 3 Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.
James 4:6
 

But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

4. Be positive and hopeful. Not negative and judgmental.
Minus my bondages and issues (in the past), I was actually quite cheerful. It did not take much to make me smile or laugh. I think I have been blessed with a sweet disposition, but there would be numerous times in the past, when that bubbly exterior would be clouded by depression, anxiety, worry and fear. The world was still very much in my spirit and the devil piggy-backed on my very many insecurities.
We would be having a remarkable time, when out of the blue, I would remember for instance, that I was anxious about the bills we had to pay, or that Dong did not have the job that I wanted for him, and I would immediately, as though a needle pricked a balloon, stop smiling and sulk. Oftentimes, I would just cry.

When I was extremely happy, Dong would tell me, “Sigh. I wonder how long this would go on,” knowing that I could easily slip into depression just after a very happy experience.

Or when I was quiet or giving him the silent treatment because of perceived hurts against him due to my unfulfilled expectations of him, he would tell me, “What is wrong?! What did I do wrong again this time?”

These were some of the things Dong told me at the height of my controlling behavior, and before I gave my life to Christ in September 2013:

“When you are sad, I feel like a failure. Because for me, my role is to make you happy.”

 “I am afraid that you will find yourself another man who has more money, who can provide for you or make you happy!”

There was one crazy PMS episode (I have since conquered my PMDD with God’s Help since my conversion!!! Before, I would usually border on the side of psychotic and crazy.)  when I was crying myself silly in the bathroom. He was so frustrated with me! He said in a loud voice,

“What is YOUR problem?! I am already employed, right? Why couldn’t you be happy?!”

That time, I was like, “How did THAT enter this conversation? How does my being depressed have anything to do with my husband being employed?”
Apparently, in my husband’s mind, if he would do what I wanted, which was to be in a “stable” job, I would be happy… and yet I wasn’t! Nothing would please Ms. High-And-Mighty Nikka. Nothing was enough. I was a bottomless pit of discontentment! 🙁
Now I have realized after the Lord opened up my spiritual eyes, that there is a reason why we are called“Ilaw ng Tahanan” (Light of the Home). We lighten up the home with our joyful and cheerful attitudes and dispositions. Our homes should be a haven for our weary family members, not a hellhole or a place to detest. Now, I am joyful and able to bring joy to my husband and family 24/7, as the Spirit continues to fill up my heart with peace and joy, which stems from finally turning my life over to Jesus Christ. 🙂

Bible Verses to Live By:

1 Peter 1: 8-9

8 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9 for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

Proverbs 15:13, NIV A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit.

 Proverbs 17:22, ESV A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

 
5. Be his Number One Fan.
We should be our husbands’ supporters, cheerleaders and encouragers. Usually, we believe in the abilities of everybody else’s but theirs! How did that happen?!

By being their Number one fan, too,  we are only called to cheer them on, not to coach them or tell them what to do.

I used to think I was my husband’s number one “cheerleader”. A cheerleader who told him what I wanted him to do in the way I wanted it done. For sure though, I would be clapping for him and congratulating him, if and when, he had done it “right” (based of course on my standards)! That’s not cheering, that’s jeering! That was not encouraging, that was dictating! That was not helping, that was demanding!
I see this particular scene played too often (as I was guilty of this too in the past) — Somebody tells you about your husband’s faults and instead of defending him (if the charge isn’t true) or just keeping quiet (if the charge is true) so as not to disrespect him in front of the accuser, you even side with that person and go into a fault-finding spree!Just because we can point out their flaws does not make us saints. In fact, that makes us “judges”, which the Lord clearly detests, for “nobody is righteous, not even one” (Romans 3:10-12) , and save for God’s Grace and Jesus’ Redemption, we would all be rotting in hell.
Dong blurted this out to me at one emotional discussion we had in the past, after I told him that he was not doing his best to help me provide for the family:

“I am very limited. But I know I am not a bad person! I know I am not lazy. I just don’t have energy to do a lot of things. I know I am not a people person. I know I am not one who would climb the corporate ladder. I wish I were, that would simplify things, but I am not. I am very simple. Just having you and the kids makes me happy. But you cannot write that in your resume —  “Contented father and husband.” “

We should be our husbands’ helpmeets, their helpers, their better halves. The Bible clearly tell us what the role is of wives in their families.

RELATED:
Nikka’s interviews with Dong, her husband
April’s Interview with Greg – Understanding a Passive Husband’s Mindset

72 thoughts on “Encouraging Our Husbands to Be Men of Courage – by Nikka

  1. Nikka,

    Wat a beautiful post but unfortunately, its the toughest to follow at all times.

    What Dong says about men talking about marriage and kids is so true. I have a incident so fresh in my memory and my heart breaks – Last year during one of my husbands friends wedding my husband on the stage was asking the his friend… You sure you wanted marriage??? I was in tears… I just started thinking of changing then but his question to his friend shows how unhappy he was in marriage:(

    PMS issues scare me the most.. Though I’ve come far.. still the voices in my head are rise during those times…

    But as you in another post – its good to focus on God’s word and not just be void of those voices!!

    Lots of Love!!
    Vinodhini

    1. Hi Vin!

      How is your health? Hope you are feeling better this past week.

      Marriage is considered a “killjoy” in these days. It “ties” one down. It “chains” a person to the spouse. Or whatever negative connotation the world says about marriage. Cohabitation is rampant and people get the “benefits” of matrimony without the covenant bond. 🙁

      It is my goal and I am sure, April’s as well, to spread God’s Great design for marriage. We have it so twisted and so wrong these days, and what is scary, is we ARE NOT AWARE of it! We view the independent streaks of modern wives as “normal” and we are constantly barraged with the message that “If the marriage ain’t working, then leave it.” What I pray the Lord will do through all of us is to create a “NEW NORMAL” among marriages from all across the globe. All it takes is to light one little candle from every country or corner of the world, to make it a brighter place. 🙂

      I am waiting for my monthly visitor now, and whereas before, stressful circumstances would be my gate pass to acting like a grumpy, weepy “lunatic” , I have been quite composed and peaceful despite the recent death of my father in law. This is all by God’s Grace, not through any merit of my own. Praise God!

      Love,

      Nikka

    2. I’m sorry for what he said about marriage.
      My hubby says similar things “you get less jail time for murder” etc. it’s hurtful. I think it reveals their own hearts and areas where they may be hurting or where they themselves are sinning against their wives!

  2. “I am very limited. But I know I am not a bad person! I know I am not lazy. I just don’t have energy to do a lot of things. I know I am not a people person. I know I am not one who would climb the corporate ladder. I wish I were, that would simplify things, but I am not. I am very simple. Just having you and the kids makes me happy. But you cannot write that in your resume — ”Contented father and husband.” ”

    Oh, Nikka! How I can sympathize with your husband’s feelings. I am built that way too and it made life so hard for me when I was a single mom. All I wanted was to be at home with my son, but I had to fight my nature and become the best income earner I could. It wore me down and made me so unhappy.

    I pray your husband finds his special niche where he can honor his finacial duty while also being true to the nature God gave him. He looks so very happy in the picture with you.

    Thanks for sharing your experiences. Every person’s story helps me to understand my journey better.

    1. Hi Livelywriter!

      Already, the Lord is working in Dong’s life… showing him his strengths as opposed to his weaknesses, and he is feeling less and less guilty about his faults and more and more encouraged upon knowing that “different” does not equate to “bad.”

      It helps that I have kept quiet and no longer barrage him with “Why are you not doing this or that?” or “When will you apply in this and that job?”. It helps that I no longer exhibit my self-righteous and all-knowing behavior towards any task he undertakes. I was his worst critic, and he felt he had to “defend” himself against my accusations. 🙁 I was playing the devil’s role so well. I was his condemner and accuser. 🙁

      I am glad that when the Lord opened my spiritual eyes and I saw myself for who and what I was — a great sinner with super many filthy sins! — I repented and He gave me a new Nikka. 🙂 I am still amazed at the transformation every single day, but I should also not be surprised because when it is Christ already residing in my heart, there is no doubt that the old is gone and the new has come. The Lord won’t reside and reign in my heart if it were still filled with rotten, stinky “trash”!

      Because I am keeping still and being still and trusting fully in God to lead me through my husband, especially in providing for us, Dong is able to move without having to check with me if I am moving with him, moving away from him, or waiting to trip him. 😉 He could move forward knowing that I would just be a step behind him, following him, whereas before I would just have simply ran ahead of him. I found him too slow! Now, and I have told him this, “I am behind you every step of the way, honey.” and he knows it and believes it. 🙂 Praise God for renewed spirits! He is amazing. 🙂

      Love,

      Nikka

    2. I can totally sympathize and identify with his description of himself here, too. I’ve never been “quick” enough or ambitious enough for the rest of world, it seems. I can only handle so many things, and I tend to do them slowly and am content just to have necessities and my husband. It’s always good to hear other people are like this, too! And what a gift you are giving him, Nikka, to accept him for how he is!! That must be such a huge weight off his shoulders, to know the person he loves most embraces his personality.

      1. Liz M,
        I think it is AWESOME to be content with the things that matter most – God, our families, loved ones and just necessities. Oh if we could all live that way!!!!! 🙂

      2. Liz,

        I never understood my husband before. I just thought he lacked good role models or something. I failed to accept him and his very simple likes and dislikes, and wanted him to be more like me — driven, motivated, go-getter, achiever. That did nothing to his spirit. I only succeeded in making him lose faith in himself and in God. 🙁

        I am now enjoying Dong’s personality. 🙂 I no longer have the fear of the future, upon God’s conviction of my sins and when He gave me a new Nikka in September 2013, so it’s all, trusting in God now, and believing that the Lord is working in our lives through Dong. A result of this new kind of thinking which is not due to any merits of mine, but only God’s, we live in peace and joy daily.

        We still have a long way to go, but already, I can see that whatever the outcome will be, God has got us covered. Together, we will emerge victorious.

        How wonderful that you are as simple-hearted as Dong. That is a HUGE blessing, Liz! I used to be so complicated! 🙁 Dong did not know how to make me happy. Well, the Lord made a miracle out of me, so I am now very simple too and continue to become simpler. 🙂 Praise God!

        Love,

        Nikka

        1. April and Nikka,

          Thanks. It’s been a long road. I used to be much more materialistic when I was younger, and also obsessed with food. I always felt empty, never had enough of anything, and was always angry. I still struggle, mainly with pride, when I think if I were more ambitious and fashionable and had an impressive and/or lucrative job, I’d fit in with others better. But then I remind myself that’s self-centered. Other people, I’m sure, do not care that much what I do or don’t do!! My focus should be on pleasing God and my husband and looking for ways to bless others.

  3. What a beautiful post Glory to God!!!!!! As I was reading I kept hearing woman was made for man. (1 Corinthians 11:9 man was not made for woman. Woman was made for man) when I really began by Gods amazing Grace to embrace this truth and put off selfishness I began to see much change in me and my perspective. Instead of living life as though my husband owed me something, I began to lay my life down for him by the grace and power of God. And . I was filled with much joy simply knowing that blessing my husband this way pleases my savior. I thank God for opening my eyes to my selfishness I couldn’t see how ugly,nasty, and evil it was because the world had much influence on my thinking and a selfish mindset is accepted and encouraged by the world. I began to want my marriage to reflect Christ and his relationship with the church in every way and embrace His design for me as a wife. I think 1 Corinthians 11:9 reflects the truth that God does not exist for us but we were created for Him and for His glory!!! I exist to glorify and worship God for his pleasure. And I get the privilege of reflecting and displaying that truth in my marriage.

    1. Hi Jessica! 🙂

      Wonderful how the Lord is working in your heart and in your life!!! Praise God!!! 🙂

      True on this point : “the world had much influence on my thinking and a selfish mindset is accepted and encouraged by the world.”

      Many of my friends do not understand what is happening to me. To them, I seem to have come from outer space after my hiatus (gave birth, deactivated from Facebook, quit my job, and sort of disappeared from the face of the earth). I look like an alien to them nowadays. 😛

      But, I have never felt this joyful or this peaceful, EVER. 🙂 “It is no longer I who lives, but Christ in me.” (Gal 2:20)

      I pray that I will be able to witness to them soon. I plan to reconnect and just have godly fellowship with them. I do not plan to preach but to just share about what is happening to me in my life, after I gave my life to Jesus. How they will take it, I leave to them. How they may be moved by it, I leave to God.

      This is something, Jessica, that we should not keep to ourselves. The message is too rich to simply keep within our Peacefulwife community. We have to share it with our friends and with people we love too. 🙂

      Praise God for what He is doing in all our marriages!
      Love,

      Nikka

      1. Nikka, I think it’s amazing that God allowed you this time to stay home with your children, and that He placed the urging in you to quit Facebook and unplug so you can focus on Him and your marriage and family. It takes so much strength and obedience to push the world away like that, and you are reaping the blessings from that. It’s wonderful to “hear” about all of that!

        1. Hi Struggling to Learn!

          It is beautiful! 🙂 Even I, who am inside this body, am amazed by how totally different “I” am. I feel like a “stranger” in that somebody has taken the place of my old self. This Nikka now gave up her career, is staying home and attending to the children and her husband, loves housework, is not ashamed to tell people that she is no longer pursuing her ambitions, and is contented serving God through her home.

          Who would have thought that to be even possible????! Surely, not me! 😛 I was too in the world to actually imagine not to pursue my worldly ambitions and continue with my worldly thinking then!

          But God is amazing, and He does transform hearts. Oh, if we only let Him!!!! 😀

          I love you, Lord. Really, I do.

          Nikka

  4. This is a great post Nikka. There is so much in this that is so true and so needed. I will need to read it a few times to digest it all.
    One of the main things that stood out to me was about the home being a safe haven, not a hellhole. My husband has called our home a hellhole before. I don’t want our home to be the place he has to gear up to enter. Almost 3 months ago is when he really started pulling away from me and our marriage (although we weren’t doing great before that). He started delaying coming home from work. Where he used to get home about 30 minutes after his shift ended, he was now over an hour late almost each night. This really upset me and at first I would let him know. He would always say it wasn’t to avoid me, but then he did admit that was part of it. But about a month and a half ago is when I truly surrendered. He had continued these later nights but I stopped complaining about it. Then this week, I noticed on Monday night he got home a little earlier and then last night he came home 30 minutes after his shift ended. I couldn’t believe it. Its just a little thing but really was a blessing to me. Hopefully our home will become his safe haven again (or for the first time).

    I also so relate to being in a good mood, then thinking of something and everything in my mood, face, demeanor changes. This has always been a struggle for me in the past and something I’m working on overcoming.

    Thank you for this post. I will be reading it again.

    1. Jeanne,

      How wonderful that the changes you’ve made are bearing fruit! I’m reminded of the old saying, “You can catch more flies with honey than vinegar.” While we aren’t in the business of catching flies :), the principle is certainly true that making our homes a haven of peace and joy will make our husbands want to be there far more than demanding he come home on time. I’m so glad for you both! May I suggest making his favorite meals? Or just carving out a few minutes for the two of you to reconnect when he comes home, maybe with his favorite appetizer ready? An atmosphere like this is conducive to loving conversation and peace. I’m excited about what’s already happening, and will pray for you.

      1. Elizabeth,
        Thank you for the ideas, encouragement and prayers. He gets off work at 8, so my daughter and I have already eaten, but I always have his dinner ready when he gets home. This was one of the things that I would get upset about because I’d have his dinner ready and he didn’t have the “courtesy” to come home right away. I’ve stopped getting upset now and just have it ready for whenever he gets there. We do usually hang out and watch tv while he eats so we have some time together then.
        Thank you!

        1. Oh, I was just going to add that prior to my changing, that time from 8pm til he got home, I would be a mess. I would check my phone every few minutes (he used to call me on his way or home or text me that he was on his way), my stomach would hurt, I would just be stressed out, pacing and wondering when he’d come home or what he was doing if he delayed. At first when I would still feel all that I would try to pray or just listen to worship music. Now I don’t get those feelings (although I still wonder when he’ll be home) instead I fill the time either taking my shower, or getting everything ready for the next day and just make myself busy doing things I need to do anyways to pass the time. That time frame is no longer a freak out time for me.

    2. I know what you mean! Its amazing when we see how wrong we were. I’m so thankful to finally see that now and can focus on me and not his “faults.”

    3. Hi Jeanne! 🙂

      The “like a light switch” change of moods was my “normal” before. It always frustrated my husband. Because he would always walk on eggshells with me. He never knew when I would switch from happy to sad, from ecstatic to depressed. I was really difficult back then, and even I frustrated myself! I couldn’t seem to keep a hold of my emotions. It always got the best of me. And people always seemed to say the “right” words to push my buttons. Just after I thought I have made great spiritual progress, a thoughtless remark or a rude comment would easily make me down-spiral. I was too touchy, too easily offended, too sensitive!!! 🙁 Those are warning signs that the world is still very much in us. We “care” about others’ opinions TOO darn much, when we should only care about pleasing Christ.

      I am so thankful to the Lord everyday that He had changed me. I take credit for nothing. All glory goes back to Him.

      I had a chance to be tested on this just recently.

      I found out that some relatives were talking behind my back against me and were hurling really nasty, hurtful accusations against me and my integrity. Whereas before,I would have easily fallen into depression or even the desire to “clear my name”, when I heard about it a few days ago, what I immediately felt was acceptance. I told the one who shared with me about it that “Yes, I am a sinner. I did not do what they said I did, but I am guilty as charged because I am a sinner, but saved by God’s Grace!” I also prayed for them and still bless them with my thoughts to this day, and I said too, “I know that in time, they will find out that their accusations were untrue, and if the Lord does not allow for that to even happen, it is still okay because God knows the truth. It does not really matter.” WHAT?! I said that? Felt that? Did that? That was the Spirit talking through me. The old Nikka would have texted every single one of them and defended myself to high heavens, while making sure to point out their faults and their sins! But, I felt none of those. I even searched my heart if I was just faking it, but you know what? Instead of enmity, I found forgiveness. Instead of “righteous” anger, I found repentance. Instead of feeling offended, I found humility. Truly, there is a new RESIDENT in my heart! I no longer rule it! Yay!!!! 🙂

      Glad that this was a blessing to you. 🙂

      Love,

      Nikka

      1. Nikka,

        I love your example here! Someone on another post, I can’t remember who, made a comment about how we can really know if our motivations are pure if we find ourselves changing and reacting to ALL things and situations differently, not just with our husbands. That is such a great example! I’m personally blessed by your response to the accusations. What a way to honor God!

        1. Hi Melissa!!! 🙂

          Yes, when the Lord changes us, He does not compartmentalize or change us in some areas, while leaving out the rest — ex: kind and understanding wife, nasty sister, loving mother, judgmental officemate. He changes us from within in ALL things. Every area of your life is transformed. Every relationship becomes different. The old is gone, the new has come!!! 🙂 That is GENUINE regeneration in Christ. 🙂

          I am still a bit in “shock” to “my” new response. That is totally not me. That is God working in and through me. I am so humbled that my new “Resident” has really evicted its old “tenant”. The old Nikka has been buried, a new Nikka is residing in “me” with Christ as landLord. 🙂

          Amen!!!

  5. Jessica,

    And isn’t it wonderful that when we do begin to live as wives and women the way God intended, we not only bring him glory, but experience deep joy and peace for ourselves? In the majority of cases, our unselfishness encourages our husbands to love us unselfishly in return, whereas the world’s way–look out for your own interests first–has resulted in an avalanche of broken families.

    Nikki’s post was indeed terrific. I never understood exactly what it meant to be a godly wife, either, until about a year ago, and I’ve been refining and learning more about it every day since then. I can feel the passionate enthusiasm in your comment for the truths we have learned and now to be true. Best wishes, and love to you, my sister!

    1. Elizabeth,

      AMEN!!!!!! I praise God constantly for opening my eyes and allowing me to experience this deep soul satisfying joy and peace that I had missed out on for so long because of my disobedience. On this refining journey with you my sister 🙂 we shall come forth as gold

    2. Hi Elizabeth! 🙂

      I did not know that there was even such a thing as a “godly wife”. Or maybe I did, but I felt that I was it. Yikes! I behaved like a godless wife, is what I was doing. Pride really blinds us from our true selves. 🙁 Humbled by God’s removal of “scales of disrespect” from my eyes. I am blessed to now be able to see. I was blind for so long. 🙁

      Amen to renewed lives and recreated spirits! 🙂

      Love,

      Nikka

  6. Kelly,

    Oh! the movie looks so good! I might not have known that it was even out if you hadn’t mentioned it, thank you!! Now I like to go see it with the family 🙂 with of course my husband’s leading 🙂 also, I like pure flix movies. Have a great day!!

  7. Hi Kelly!

    Interesting thought there on “misogyny”. I think, by our fallen nature, women are usually envious of each other but when among friends, we tend to affirm each other’s bad behavior when it comes to our husbands. As though, our sins are justified and our husbands’ are not. To our husbands, we commit the sin of self-righteousness and pride. Again, due to our fallen human nature, because we are all daughters of Eve.

    Genesis 3:16

    To the woman he said, “I will make your pains in childbearing very severe; with painful labor you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.”

    The enemy appeals to our vanity when he wants us to be catty against fellow women (“You are prettier”.; “You are sexier.”; etc/)

    The enemy on the other hand appeals to our high value of self when he wants us to put down our husbands. (“You are so lazy.”; “You could not stand on your feet without my contributions.”; “If only he would change, our lives would be better.”; etc.)

    We should be wary of our “friendships”. Are they leading us to Christ or are these relationships making us more worldly? Are these friends supportive of the covenant of marriage, or are these so-called friends the first to say the word, “Divorce him!” , the moment a problem arises in your marriage.

    If they do nothing to contribute to your walk with Christ, maybe it is time to reassess what exactly their role is in your life right now….

    As for blogging and multi-tasking… It is the Lord Who dictates what to write. I just basically listen to the Spirit’s Leanings and sit down and write, in between the many chores and responsibilities. 🙂 We can get things done if we put our minds and hearts to it. We do our best, then God will do the rest. 🙂

    Thanks for the comments, Kelly! 🙂

    Love,

    NIkka

  8. Ladies,
    I have been at work all day – I hope I might have time to respond more later – but my schedule is very tight tonight!

    Much love to all of you! I am so glad you can have such an amazing conversation together even when I can’t join in!

    1. April,

      I hope you had a good, productive day at work. This topic resonated with so many of us today, as almost all the posts here do! Thank you so much for giving us this forum of encouragement and communication. Much love!

      1. Elizabeth,

        This is such a God thing – I am in awe of what He is doing here every day. I’m so thankful to get to be a small part of watching Him work around the world. I have to give Him all the glory for the good that is going on and the miracles and refining that is happening here.

        Thanks for the encouragement! 🙂 Much love to you, my beautiful sister!

  9. Hi Godlywifetobe! 🙂

    In this journey, it really is ALL about our OWN walk with Christ. Our husbands’ reactions are NOT the reason why we do what we do — that is, to submit to them as to the Lord. So, actually, regardless of how they react, whether good or bad, that is NOT our concern. We focus on Christ and His commandment for us wives to respect our husbands and to submit to them.

    I am actually joyful that my own regenerated life is touching my husband’s life, and I am now seeing the Lord work in my husband’s life. He used to have a “strong faith in God”, but it dwindled and he even divulged that his faith wavered to the point of near agnosticism, when I kept on telling him during my most controlling years that his faith was “blind”, and that God needs to see more results from him, that mere lip service of believing that He will provide, etc. I was soooo proud and self-righteous!!! 🙁

    I single-handedly with years of disrespect, made him lose his faith in himself and in God. He “learned” from me to trust in his own strength and to put things in his hands, not God’s. 🙁

    It is for this reason that I am “Petering” Dong now. (1 Peter 3:1-5)

    1 Peter 3:1-5
    New International Version (NIV)
    3 Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, 2 when they see the purity and reverence of your lives. 3 Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. 4 Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. 5 For this is the way the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to adorn themselves. They submitted themselves to their own husbands,

    I witness to him about my new faith in Christ when He regenerated me, but most of the time, I just keep my mouth shut. I also am very conscious about my behavior towards him because I do not want to MALIGN THE WORD. I consider myself a walking billboard for Christ, so I do not want to carry Christ’s message and yet act contrary to what I “preach”! False advertising!

    Titus 2:5

    “to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.”

    Already, Dong’s faith is being regenerated too because of many things : my submission to him and the recent death of his father (We buried him just yesterday.) I have been praying and fasting for his own conversion and conviction of sins. I am hopeful that in my husband’s current “broken state”, the Lord can make a breakthrough in his spirit and be able to enter my husband’s heart.

    As for being best friends with your spouse, it is I, on the other hand, who does not understand how husbands and wives get married WITHOUT being each other’s best friend, 😛 Even before we got married, we already were the best of friends. I enjoy nearly every activity with my husband — We watch movies together; We eat out once in a while and just date and enjoy each other’s company minus the children; We enjoy long conversations and share our innermost thoughts with each other; We do not keep secrets from each other unless the secret is like the respect journey I was on last year, but I eventually shared it with him when I felt led to tell him about it… In short, we LOVE being with each other. I do not have a BEST friend other than Dong. Whereas some wives have women or even men best friends apart from their spouses, I do not have such. Dong is the first to know the juiciest stories I have to tell and he knows my innermost secrets. I do have friends, and they do make my life more well-rounded, but if God would ask me to choose someone among my many friends, it will always be Dong I will choose first.

    Think about it. If you were stuck on an island for many days, who would you want to be with you? Without thinking, I would answer, “my husband.” Being with him is enjoyable! I love his company! 🙂

    It is my personal opinion that the reason why we stuck it out to each other for so long even during our darkest times, while setting God aside [During those dark times when my prideful self ruled, I unconsciously really set aside God. Only “I” ruled and mattered in those days. 🙁 ], it was our FRIENDSHIP that saw us through. Minus the romance, our friendship remained.

    That is what it means to have your husband as your best friend, Godlywifetobe. 🙂 Hope that somehow explains it?

    I am sorry to hear that your husband is “opposed” to you at this time and not really understanding of your faith in God.

    For now, sister, it would be really good to just focus on 1 Peter 3. “Peter” him and witness to him, but do not focus ON HIM. Focus only in Christ.

    Love,

    Nikka

    1. Love your description of your relationship with your husband, Nikka! My husband is my best buddy, too. He’s always the person I’d choose first to do anything with. People think we are weird. Ha.

      1. Ha! 🙂 It is fun having our husbands as our best buddies, right Liz? 🙂 Dong and I are joined at the hip. He accompanies me to shopping/grocery shopping and I learned tennis because he was “addicted” to it before. I play video games because that was/is his hobby and he learned to bake (He bakes us our weekly bread.) because that was mine. We learn from each other and with each other. And yes, people do think we are weird. 😛 Most usually ask us if we are just boyfriend/girlfriend because we do not act “married”. We are too touchy and laugh out loud a lot, as though just new “lovers.” Ha! If they only knew — we have 4 kids spaced three years apart! 😉

        We are very much alike. 🙂 God bless you, Liz.

        1. Aw, you two sound sweet :). My husband and I are the same way. We keep each other up late at night talking, and we do almost everything together. I still love learning about him and from him, even after almost 15 years!! God bless you and your marriage, too.

    2. Thanks for explaining your position on friendships. Sounds like you and Dong have similar interests 🙂

      Unfortunately hubby and I are like day and night, chalk and cheese. If I were to be stuck on an island I would choose my hubby only for his strength and survival tips…

      Any conversation is met with frustration really because he can’t go to a deeper level. He’s pretty one dimensional. He has inappropriate responses to most topics and a lot of my friends have mentioned it’s hard to converse with him and they feel awkward talking to hi because of his lack of real meaning or depth :/ so it’s very hard!

      1. Oh. 🙁 Sorry to hear that. 🙁 I pray that you and your hubby will find a similar interest that you can enjoy together. I can sense that there are some frictions in your marriage brought about by being too different…

        But, opposites do attract, they say. 🙂 Thanks for sharing your heart, Godlywifetobe. With Christ at the helm, things are going to be better. God bless you!

      2. Godlywifetobe,

        I believe that he may be able to have deeper conversations in the future when he feels safe and as God draws him to Himself.

        One way I like to look at this is that you are on assignment from God to be a missionary to this man. That is your primary function and ministry on this planet from God. I Peter 3:1-6 is God’s instruction manual.

        I pray you might have godly friends to talk and pray with and to have spiritual and emotional connection with. And I pray for God’s power and strength and his love to empower you to be the wife He desires you to be to bless this particular man. You are her with him for reasons you will not know until you enter heaven. But I pray you will use your time wisely and that God might empower you to be faithful to the tasks He has given you. We are all here and glad to support you and pray for you and your husband.
        Thank you for being in this journey with us!!!!

        1. He says I’m the only person he can really talk to and there are times he opens up. Mainly about work frustrations and his family frustrations.

          Just been having a hard week. I’ve been trying hard to just go with the flow and hold my tongue but we had an argument earlier in the week. It’s ok-ish now but it seems the high we were on has dipped once again like always.

          Feeling defeated and probably selfish in that I want him to change….

      3. Our marriage counselling quiz thing we took 2 years ago said our marriage was in critical condition with nothing in common :/

        An example would be bikies. Bikies own tattoo places and hide drug money etc and they are being targeted by police to clean up. There are laws in my country being proposed to not allow bikies owning tattoo places. Hubby thinks this is outrageous. That it doesn’t matter if bikies break the law and using it for drug money. A bikie said “if they shut my business they’re forcing me to do illegal things now”. I mentioned “what rubbish” at hearing the bikie say that. Hubby said “too right! Man has to live. If they take his business away he should show them! Break all the laws. Cops are pigs anyway and should all be shot”.

        That’s the type of conversations that we have almost every day about anything.

        Tonight I mentioned I went to the doc. He said “have you asked to go off antidepressants yet?” (I’ve been on them 6 mths). I said the doc and I think it’s best to stay on a little longer but try another one in hopes of stopping anymore weight gain. He responded “yeah you’ve put weight on alright. You probably weigh more than me. You better not get addicted to those. You don’t need them anyway”

  10. Nikka, this is another marvellous post! Every word you have written is *so* true. It was funny to read about your mood swings, as that’s another familiar bear. I think mood swings frustrate the daylights out of men and make them feel inadequate, because they want their wives to be content and cheerful-hearted. Obviously horrible things happen that can overwhelm all of us, but as I have learned, every little ‘off’ thing should not have the power to send us over the edge.

    Also—I’m not sure where this fits in, probably self-restraint—we need to be so careful about what we say and think about how it affects our husband.

    Neither my husband or I particularly like the house we live in right now; it is newer, when we *adore* older homes; some of the neighbors are extremely rude, when in our first home we’d have porch & house & yard parties with our neighbors, some of whom actually helped me when I was very ill. We’d both like to move back into an older home instead of this new construction we found ourselves with when we moved here from out of state, knowing nothing about the area and unable to rent with a 100-pound collie (honestly, I think little dogs can be more destructive, but…;) ).

    One day something annoying happened and I let slip, again, how much I hated the house, and my husband stopped me and told me that it hurt his feelings when I said that, even though he felt pretty much the same way about the house! Goodness, I felt *so* terrible. My eyes well with tears right now as I think about it, because I’d said it often before in my anger at the circumstance (not at him) and did not realize what I was doing. So I have worked *VERY* hard not to say that about this house again and instead focus on the things about it that I do like so that I don’t say that to him again. I simply never realized (or even thought about), until he told me, what my seemingly innocent, venting words did to his feelings.

    I’m very glad he told me and weirdly…since I’ve stopped saying it he does more stuff around the house to make it more livable! That’s not why I changed, but it is funny. 😉 At any rate, before we say something about anything, we should probably think about how our husband might take it. I sure find myself zipping my lip just in case a lot more often since that day!

    xoxoxoxo, ladies!

    1. Jen,
      This is a great point! Husbands can easily take our complaints very personally – that THEY are not providing well enough for us to be happy. I’m so glad your husband was able to articulate his feelings to you! And I am so thankful you listened.

      This is part of self-control – it is also part of obeying God’s commands to us as believers not to argue or complain so that we can shine like the stars in the universe as we hold forth the Word of Life. (Philippians 2:14-16). Arguing and complaining keep us from shining for Christ and show that we are not grateful, thankful people for all that God has done for us, too.

      Beautiful!!!!!!!

  11. Hi Kelly!

    I have that same book. I bought myself that book, as a young and newly married wife in 2004. I bought my husband the counterpart of that book, “The Power of A Praying Husband.” It was very helpful!

  12. Hi Jen!

    God really designed us to be the “weaker vessels” but women rebelled against this thinking that sexes should be equal. When the Lord made us, He knew that we were emotional, easily swayed/gullible and physically weaker, that is why He commanded for us to be under the man’s headship. But women did not see that as a protection, but as an oppression. No wonder so many marriages are in the state they are in now. Too much independence and too much pride.

    At least, to the rest of us whose eyes have been opened to God’s beautiful design for marriage, and godly femininity, we can stop all the battle of the sexes culture we have unknowingly acted on , and follow God’s order of things. Peace and joy abound in our home lives daily! Praise God! 🙂

    Love,

    Nikka

  13. Kelly! Okay first the comment about your husband using a vacuum cleaner to do your daughter’s hair almost made me snort coffee on my computer. I’ve seen YouTube videos that were satirical…I didn’t realize people actually did that.

    Second, I LOVE what you said about how no one can make you feel bad, only God can convict you of sin. I am so guilty of allowing my husband’s perceptions of my failures/shortcomings/sins to make me feel bad, to make me feel like a horrible wife who just can’t get this respect thing right when I don’t live up to his expectations. But I have to STOP and pray about whether I really did sin against him by not realizing something should have been done, or by maybe making excuses why I couldn’t do it (if I was feeling lazy – NOT okay!), or if maybe I didn’t sin at all and those expectations are just unrealistic and I’m still pleasing God.

    How difficult it is to stop and ponder that in the midst of an argument when your husband is upset with you. To realize God isn’t convicting you because you truly didn’t sin could make your husband think that you don’t care that he is upset, that his feelings are invalid, that you aren’t willing to put forth more effort. I don’t want my husband to think I’m not willing to make a stronger effort, but I also don’t want to run myself ragged trying to meet unrealistic expectations that were set on me by man rather than God. I sometimes feel if my husband is upset with me, then I should be upset too, in order for him to feel that his feelings are valid and understood. If he’s upset or angry, but I’m still joyful because I refuse to allow him to make me feel bad, I’m concerned that wouldn’t be very respectful towards him.

    One response could be to take what he says and state that I will pray about it and ask God what I could have done better or differently, but if my husband is struggling in his faith and doesn’t want to hear about God right now, I’m not sure how else to respond. Maybe just say I’m sorry, I understand, I will continue working to improve? (And hope he doesn’t say he’s tired of hearing me say I will continue working, I should already be better by now?)

    Anyway, these are just some questions I’m posing to myself. My purpose in commenting was to thank you for your point about how only God can convict us of our sin, not anyone else, so we need to weigh what people say against whether we feel convicted by God, or simply feel guilty for not making someone else happy.

    (Why do my comments always end up being novels?! 🙂 )

    1. Yes, that is definitely what I must do. Thanks Kelly! And I’ve heard of that conference, it sounds like a lot of fun. I need to see if it comes to our area! My husband would probably be very interested!

    2. Kelly,
      Love this!

      It is very hard not to be dragged down by a husband’s stress or depression. There are times when we can’t do anything to make our husbands happy. Sometimes they have stuff pressing and weighing on them that they have to deal with. It can be especially tricky when they seem to change their mind a lot about what they want and need from one day to the next. I know some men like that, and it is a challenge for their wives for sure!

      Ultimately, I think we can find peace if we realize we really answer to Christ and our job is to please Him. We may not be able to please our husbands every minute. They may be stressed out and just having a bad time. We can pray that God might show us how to bless them. But – we also have to not try to take on their emotional wellbeing as our project. I hope that makes sense. I love the way Kelly put it!

      Praying for you, struggling to learn!

      Let us know how we can pray and encourage you. 🙂

      1. Thank you!!! My prayer is that God will give me discernment regarding whether or not I have actually sinned against my husband, or if his expectations are unrealistic – and regardless, to react in a way that VALIDATES my husband’s feelings. Even if I could never meet his expectations, still his hurt, disappointment, and anger are valid, and I don’t want to have an attitude of “Well I know I didn’t do anything wrong, so how you feel is your fault.”

        I need so much more of God’s power working in me. SO MUCH MORE of Christ and less of me!!! (Is it bad to “beg” God, because sometimes I feel like I just want to beg and beg and beg for these things!)

        1. Struggling to learn,

          I think tho are good things to beg for from God! I love your heart and your prayers. This kind of heart and faith is the kind God hears and rewards!!!!!

        2. Hi Struggling to Learn! 🙂

          Looks like you are really very all-out in your desire to learn all this respect and submission thing. 🙂

          It is right that you should have more of Christ’s power to rely on, than your own strength.

          When your husband reprimands you and what he said is true, take it as an opportunity to improve on that particular area/issue. God does speak through our husbands too, as our earthly authorities, in order to tell us what we are doing wrong.

          When your husband reprimands you and what he said is not true, take it as an opportunity to practice restraint against defending yourself and just lifting it to God. God knows the truth about you anyway, and defending yourself, usually does not achieve much. Do so though when the accusation is very malicious or just plain out-of-line, but do so only with gentleness and love.

          When your husband reprimands you and what he said is neither true nor false, or falls in the “I don’t know how to take that comment” area, it would be better to just keep silent and again, lift these concerns to the Lord.

          In all these, always maintain a spirit of humility, while focusing your eyes only to the Lord.

          Being hurt by his remarks, whether deserving or not deserving of them, shows how much the world is still in our hearts. When we are easily offended or discouraged, shows that we have still too much pride. Why else will we feel slighted when we do not do things “perfectly” if only for the reason that we think we should by now, be able to do things flawlessly?

          Feeling bad is a warning sign that we are doing things not for God but for ourselves or for our husbands. Let us always remember that we are fallen. We cannot go lower than that, unless we really reject God, but since we all here love God, though fallen, we just strive NOT to stay fallen.

          We fall, we rise. We fall again, we rise again. Everything your husband may rightly or wrongly reprimand you for will mold you into the person Christ wants you to be. When accepted with all humility, nothing can faze us. What accusation when hurled at us, should make us crumble? Nothing. Because we all know we are sinners. We all know we are fallen. But with God’s Grace we have been redeemed. 🙂

          Practicing this with your husband is a great way to also face the world, which could condemn us and judge us far harshly than our better halves. Through it all, just remain humble. That is beautiful in God’s eyes.

          God bless you in your walk with Christ!

          Love,

          Nikka

          1. Nikka,

            It took me a while to respond because there was SO MUCH meat and truth in your comment. Few words, but so much to absorb.

            When there is truth to my husband’s discontent, I need to accept it as an area for growth. When there is not truth, I need to accept it as a time to practice restraint and allow Christ to fill my needs. I am usually “in position” ready to defend myself because I want my husband to get to know my heart better – because if he is wrong, it is likely because he is making wrong assumptions and shouldn’t I explain to him my heartfelt motives so that he won’t make those assumptions again? No – it is the Holy Spirit’s job to reveal truth to my husband. I may speak the truth but it will not be heard by my husband, especially during times of distress and upset.

            Sometimes I think my husband would be so much happier if only he would listen to where my heart truly is, if only he would realize my actions are always to bless him. When I miss the mark, it is not because I don’t care, and that’s what makes him so upset – he’s making wrong assumptions thinking I don’t care enough. I feel like I have to make him realize that I do, I am just simply human. I don’t screw up intentionally.

            But ugh – it is not my job to correct his assumptions. It is not my job to ensure his happiness. I don’t hold that kind of power. I can purpose to bless him to the extent that God empowers me, but then he and God have to deal with whether he receives it, and how he reacts when he doesn’t receive what he “expects” me to be doing for him.

            I can start to feel the freedom in releasing myself from that responsibility, and releasing myself from the chore of defending myself to no avail. I have a small taste of that freedom and peace, but I know I have a long road ahead of me to get where I react in God’s power regularly.

            Thank you for your encouragement, prayers, and godly wisdom!

          2. Struggling to Learn,

            I love what you are learning! This is beautiful!

            You may like to read “Defending Myself No More,” too. 🙂 And maybe even “When Words Are Many, Sin is Not Absent”

            Your husband will see your heart much more clearly and your loving motives when you receive his comments graciously and don’t go on high alert.

            I also have a video about accepting our husbands’ constructive criticism on my Youtube channel “April Cassidy” that may be helpful.

            This does not come naturally! But, as you respond by being open to what he has to say, by listening and really considering his point of view, that will draw him to you like a magnet. Most likely!

            Then, he may actually apologize if he was harsh. And, he may just ask you to share your heart.

            I have seen it happen many times! 🙂

          3. April, thank you for the links! I will check them out, as well as the video.

            I appreciate what you said about receiving his comments graciously, so that he will see my heart more clearly. I’ve always felt like I needed to explain my heart, but that puts a different spin on it and I needed to hear that. Thank you!

          4. Struggling to Learn,

            I want your husband to hear your heart! Your thoughts and ideas are important! But I think you will find he can hear you more when he knows you are hearing him and not arguing. Let me know how it goes! 🙂

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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