I set myself thinking of what I can share this week. Sharing a husband's view of the wife's most crucial role became the obvious answer ... with fresh practical experience!
The adage, "Behind every successful man is a woman" is only half the story. If it were true, then every married man would have been successful. But we know that this is certainly far from the truth. So, it brings me to ask, "What kind of woman makes her man successful?"
So, here's my message for the wives - what can you do to make your man successful?
We all know that a successful leader, amongst other things, needs faithful and loyal supporters. They must always rally around him. They must believe in him, allow him the freedom to lead and help him to cover his weaknesses. They must respect him. They must forgive him when he makes mistakes. The supporters give their leader confidence and make him look good!
In the context of marriage and according to God's way, the husband is the head/leader of the union. The wife is to be his closest and most loyal supporter and follower. In my own experience, this is the most crucial role of a wife.
Wives, I want you to know this, that although we desire it a lot, the greatest need for men is not sex. Our greatest need is respect! This is how a man is created. Whether he clearly exhibits it or not, your man is wired to lead. And as your leader, he needs to be respected and affirmed.
Nothing pains a man more than not receiving support and affirmation from the one whom he loves. Worst still if he hears his wife constantly berating him, speaking down to or negatively about him.
Wives, let me tell you that negative words spoken about and to your husband are sure ways to destroy him. It may drive him to others who are willing to give him respect and speak sweetly to him. Be very aware not to set this trap for your marriage.
I thank God that my wife knows all these well. Over the years, she has learned that a confident and successful man has deep roots in a supportive, respectful and prayer wife.
This is not to say that we have marital bliss all the time. We so have our tiffs too. But in the bigger picture, she constantly demonstrates her unceasing support for me, gives me confidence through her respect and so makes me who I am today. And I am thankful to her for making me feel good!
How can a wife make her man successful? (Or cheekily restated, what are things that husbands dare not ask of their wives?) Try the followings:
1. Respect - Fuel his leadership instinct. Make him feel that he is your God-given leader. You may not agree with him on all of his decisions, but there is no need to disagree with him and make a fuss over non-crucial issues. Make him look and feel good frequently and he will take more responsibilities to make crucial decisions confidently.
2. Support - Believe in him and constantly tell him that you do, not just only for the major decisions that he has made. Affirm him at every opportunity. Your husband needs to hear words of affirmation constantly and it is especially gratifying to hear it from his wife! Start with affirmation over small things but do it often until it becomes a habit. You don't know how much that boosts a man.
3. Speak well of him - Let him and others know how much you love, respect and support him. Let him be so proud to be around your children, in-laws, church mates, and friends by what you say of him. Start praising him over small things ... "my husband is a wonderful man ... he is a responsible father ..." Biblical principles say that the more you confess, the more he becomes!
4. Pray for him - This is the root of a successful man; a wife who keeps her husband covered in prayer constantly. Truly, "if God is for us, who can be against us?" (Rom 8:21 NIV). Constantly praying for your man brings God into his life, and that brings success!
5. Submit to him - Many women of this era disagree with this. They are wrong. God's truth is eternal. Wives submitting to their husbands is part of a holy matrimonial union (Eph 5:22-24), just as husbands are to love their wives with sacrificial love. Submitting to your husband means to let him have his way (yes, yes, when he is on the right path!), to follow his leadership, to trust him.
6. Forgive him - Husbands are humans too. We make mistakes. When we do, forgive as you have been forgiven, especially when he realizes his mistake and asks for forgiveness. And, never ever bring up all that has been forgiven.
7. Love him - Love your husband emotionally and sexually. Let there be intimacy in the spirit and in the body. Love fuels a man and gives him confidence to face his challenges, to recover from his battle and to receive strength to face the next day. While the greatest need of man is respect, a satisfying sexual relationship with his wife is the greatest stress buster.
Have you ever watched professional ball room dancing before? If not, do so and learn great truth from it. Meanwhile, let me share what makes a ball room dance so enjoyable to watch:
- The male dancer MUST always lead the dance. Every step and move is his responsibility and his alone. He decides when to move, when to halt, when to execute a posture and when not. There are several set pieces but he must be able to give the relevant signals to his partner by his body movement so that she can be in synchronization with his next step.
- The female dancer MUST always FOLLOW the male's lead. There is no other way - this is ball-room dancing. She is to flow in one with the male as he leads. She cannot decide her own move. There is no negotiation, only submission so that the pair can glide through the ball room as one. She must support her man's every decision for the next move. No question asked. She must understand his signal for the next step to take. She is constantly focused on what he wants her to do next. She must be well versed with various possible set pieces and dutifully executes these when required.
- Both dancers must fundamentally follow the tempo of the music individually. If they don't, they do not have a dance. If they do, their movements are in synchronization and they become two bodies flowing as one in heavenly realm!
- Behind the beautiful dance are many hours of practice. Both the partners spend time and effort to refine and perfect their moves. They also get to know each other so very well that at the twitch of a finger, or a gesture of the body, they communicate clearly what is in their mind.
Wives, you surely play a crucial role in your husband's life!
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