Following God with Courage

"This is my command--be strong and courageous! Do not be

afraid or discouraged. For the LORD your God is with you wherever you go." -- Joshua 1:9 (NLT)

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Recognizing Love Exercises

In Dr. Kevin Leman's book "7 Things He'll Never Tell You {but you need to know}, he asks the question, "What kind of things does your husband do for you that show he really cares?" He immediately follows it with the question, "What kinds of things can you do for him that show you really care?" When I read that today I thought, "What a great set of questions to ask!" It is easy to get to going each day and forget to really think about these things and to not really show love or feel love. So here goes with my two lists...

Things my husband does for me that show he really cares:
  • Does the dishes every night.
  • Gets up consistently at 6:40 AM so that I can be on time for work at 8:00 since I need to give him a ride to his work... even though he doesn't have to be at work until 8:30 AM.
  • Eats whatever I fix... even if it is fish which he doesn't really like.
  • Brags on my food.
  • Makes time to spend with me.
  • Works on solving storage problems for me.
  • Does my laundry.
  • Gives great hugs.
  • Tries to be on time for church... even though it goes against his nature and personality.
  • Watches TV... he doesn't like to, but he knows that I do.
  • Wishes he could buy me flowers.
  • Tells me he is in it with me when things get really harry and bad.
  • Takes a shower... even when he doesn't think he needs one, but I do.

Things I can do for my husband to show I really care:

  • Cook food that he likes.
  • Make snacks that he really likes.
  • Make sure he doesn't forget his lunch.
  • Take time out for him everyday... even when it doesn't seem possible.
  • Listen to his dreams.
  • Listen to his techno talk.
  • Bike with him.
  • Give him lots of hugs.
  • Tell him how I need him.
  • Treat him like the most important thing in my life.
  • Respect his individuality, needs, and opinions.
  • Let him fail... don't impress my perfectionist tendencies on him.

This was a good exercise. I would challenge any married person to take it.

Until next time...

Monday, April 26, 2010

Husband Encouragement Goals for week of April 26

Husband Encouragement Goals

  1. Show him respect. By my actions, the way I phrase questions and speak to him, show him that I value his opinions, what he thinks, and how he feels.
  2. Tell him & show him he is needed... often.
  3. Work at getting the house cleaner.
  4. Try not to use too many dishes.
  5. Make him a really good snack.
  6. Make an effort to show him more affection even in the midst of our hectic life.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Daring Love to Meet Needs

I read this love dare this week:

"Lord, teach me what real love is & make me a loving person."

And, I thought, "I want God to teach me to love my husband and make me a loving person. I don't always feel like I am. I feel like I struggle with selfishness."

Then I read in Dr. Leman's book "7 Things He'll never tell you {but you need to know}" that my husband has three major need:

1. to be RESPECTED
2. to be NEEDED
3. to be FULFILLED

And, I thought, "I needed that. I have been forgetting those things as of late."

So... my goals this week? Learn to love my husband. Pray for God to show me how. And, show my husband respect. Think about my responses before I respond. Think, "Does that reply honor my husband or is it selfish?" and, "Will that make my husband feel needed?" This week it is my goal to act or speak only after I have thought about the impact it will have on my husband.

Until next time...

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Birth Order

I am still reading "7 things he'll never tell you {but you need to know}" by Dr. Kevin Leman. The secontion I read today is "Your Grown-Up Boy and His Birth Order. Here are some quotes I'd like to remember:

  • "Firstborns (that's me) or only children are achievers or overachievers and are usually scholarly... the oldest child is not only an achiever, but ordered, well-disciplined, and well-organized."

  • "[Firstborns] tend to be dependant upon the family - meaning they will uphold the family values and that approval of the family is important to them."

  • "A firstborn is an achiever, reliable, consicientious, cautious, and conservative... hard worker... someone who sees that all the needs of [their] family are met... perfectionist and competitive by nature... And when [they] fail at a task, [they] get really down on [themselves]."

  • "If you are a firstborn, rein in your competitive urges. Let your husband "be a man" and take the lead once in a while. And when your own perfectionism kicks in, take the long-range view."

  • "Middleborns (that's my husband) make very good peacemakers and negotiators. They make friends easily and are loyal... [they] are the most faithful marriage partners. They don't let stress get them down, but they attack problems with gusto to get them settled. They don't let conflict remain in a family for very long without talking about it and trying to resolve it... they have a lot of training in give-and-take."
  • "But because a middle child is good at compromising, he may be hesitant to tell you what he really thinks, even when you ask."

  • "If you're married to a middleborn, you have to watch carefully to make sure yo're not trampling his feelings. Because he is so susceptible to peer presure (what others think of him), he may tend to do things to make you and others happy."
  • "If your husband is a middleborn, what can you do? Model for him that you really do want to hear what he thinks... Make sure you don't judge his opinion when he does share it with you... Assure him that he doesn't have to do something he doesn't want to do."

Monday, April 5, 2010

Meanderings on Marriage

Marriage is hard work. I had heard that my whole life, but until now, I did not really know what it meant. I have worked hard before, but there is something about the fact that I now have no personal space that makes marriage even harder than anything else I have worked at before. I want to bless my husband and to do him good and not harm all the days of his life, but then I get SO VERY FRUSTRATED with him.

I have started reading a book by Dr. Kevin Leman titled "7 things he'll never tell you {but you need to know}". The first thing that Dr. Leman told me that I needed to know was that my husband would run out of words. I am not the most verbal of females and my husband is rather verbal for a male, so while we have experienced this, it has not been a big problem, yet. Reading the first point of Dr. Leman was not very hard.

The second thing Dr. Leman told me was more timely for me. He says that boys never really do quite grow up... and that you wouldn't want them to. This point is harder for me. Just the other day I found myself wondering why my husband hadn't grown up in a particular area. I thought, "I knew this about him. I can not honestly say that it is a surprise or that I thought something different before we were married. However, now that we are married, it bugs the mess out of me at times."

I have a co-worker who is getting ready to get married within the next year. She and her fiance are reading through a book that is supposed to make sure that they have discussed everything before they get married and that they do not have any surprises once they do get married. It got me to thinking. My husband and I did not use such a book, but we knew each other pretty well. I can not honestly say that I have had any surprises about who he is, what he thinks about things, or how he approaches life. The big surprise for me has been how seemingly small things that did not seem like a big deal before marriage.... areas where we knew we were different/ ways that we process life or approach life differently.... are now huge. Now, several of those seemingly small things seem huge since our lives are so permanently linked. The fact that boys never really do quite grow up... that is one of the small things before marriage that feels huge for me now.

Dr. Leman says...
1. Baby him when he is sick. -- OK. Can do.
2. Let him win sometimes. -- When and how am I competing with my husband? I pray God will show me and give me the grace to let my husband win sometimes.
3. Let him be a boy. -- How? I pray God will show me.

I haven't finished the chapter. Maybe Dr. Leman has some great, practical advice. In the meantime, I am praying about how to deal with this in a personal way that makes me and my husband joyous and happy.

Until next time...