Earlier this week, I ran a post “Do We Try to Control Our Husbands’ Jobs?” where I shared how two wives tried to force and pressure their husbands into certain jobs and what severe problems that created for their husbands and their marriages.
Today I am excited to share a response from one of our brothers in Christ on this issue. I would love to hear from more of the men, as well.
I think that most of us as women/wives do not begin to understand what a critical issue a man’s career/job/unemployment is for most men. My prayer is that our husbands would eventually find their identity in Christ alone and not rely as much on their work or in making us “happy” to feel “successful.”
But – we do still have to realize that work and career often is central to a man’s identity in a way that would be comparable to how we as women often identify ourselves by our family relationships (wife, mother). Our men NEED our support as they seek to be “successful” in the world, to contribute in meaningful ways to society, to utilize their gifts, talents and abilities and to financially support the family. When a man cannot do these things, it can be incredibly emasculating and painful for him. In fact, one book I read about understanding men described that it is easier for many men to face terminal cancer than to face unemployment many times.
Let that one sink in for a moment.
How can WE be godly wives and help to lift burdens from our men in this area? How can we apply less pressure and more inspiration, encouragement, appreciation, faith and blessing?
Listen to what this man has to say and prayerfully consider what God may be speaking to you about how important this issue is for your man.
**(If your husband suffers from an uncontrolled mental illness or drug/alcohol addiction, I am not writing for wives in these kinds of severe situations, please seek godly, experienced, biblical, appropriate help. And if your husband is physically able to work but chooses not to work and wants to be home, this post may not apply in such situations. Not all men are exactly alike, after all.)
FROM THANKFUL HUSBAND:
Work is something most men will struggle with throughout their lives. It’s is part of the curse of our sin. Especially young men, still trying to find out what they are good at in a modern world that often does not value the things a young man brings to the table. It takes trial and error, effort and failure, often he will seem lost and without direction.
But as a business owner (who faced that exact circumstance before finding success) who interacts with some of the most successful & powerful men in the world…even those at the top are always in some kind of struggle with their work. And that struggle usually always goes about ten times deeper than what we let it show. Because we are not allowed to show that. That is weakness, and it is not acceptable and downright dangerous & negligent in the work environment and often times just as much at home. It makes up such a huge part part of our identity and it’s how we often express a large part of our love and protection for our wives and families.
I have no answers to negate the struggle your husband will undoubtedly face throughout life, it’s assured, as the curse is assured. But I can tell you,
A wife who is thankful for a husband’s protection and provision, who is a safe, warm and soft place to land is a blessing beyond blessing.
Lastly, I know for most women security is at the top of the list when it comes to things she wants her husband to provide for her – I know it is with my wife. And of course security is very, very closely related to money. Money is a tricky thing in this modern world and we are often deceived in what we think. I can tell you this, as someone who deals with the 1% daily, they are often less secure than the young couple. Everyone is leveraged and in debt beyond belief and put their trust in things that quite literally will dissappear anyday. But it throws everyone’s perspective off and gives us a false sense of what’s real and how much money we need to be “safe.”
There is far more security in a man who is willing to work harder and longer for his family than there is in one whose making more (even a lot more) in the moment. No matter what your husband makes at this moment, even if it doesn’t feel enough, if he is giving it his all and if tomorrow something where to happen and he’d take a job scrubbing toilets to support his family…you are richly blessed indeed. The trick is in keeping it in perspective and in showing it to him.