The second thing I've learned, is the importance of Satisfying your husband.
I know this can be a touchy subject and some of us may not want to hear this today or ever, but I know the Lord has laid it on my heart to talk to you about this. So here we go.
Ladies, I know you are in an exhausting season of your lives with your little ones and that's often the last thing your thinking about throughout the day. You've spent your day making meals, cleaning up meals, dressing children, playing with toys, cleaning up toys, washing laundry, running errands, and wiping everything from countertops to rear ends. Your day is exhausting- no question about that. Let me tell you from experience that while your daily routine may change, your level of exhaustion generally will not.
Now, I'm not trying to discourage, just being real. I feel like I have days now where I am more exhausted then when I had 5 under 9 at home.
My point is that you can't use exhaustion as an excuse not to be with your husband if you're thinking you'll be able to reconnect and satisfy later when you have more energy or more time. Welcome to Motherhood!
I made a decision early on that I wanted to be the one my husband wanted, dreamed about and desired forever. So I learned what the Bible had to say about intimacy and sex in a marriage.
My point is that you can't use exhaustion as an excuse not to be with your husband if you're thinking you'll be able to reconnect and satisfy later when you have more energy or more time.
married couples and when we focus on it that way, it will change our whole outlook and our marriages will be richly blessed in intimacy and so much more.
This is not meant to be something that is not fun and causes tension in a marriage. Rather it is a precious gift that God has given to married couples.
Okay, so we know it doesn't take much for our husbands to get in the mood. But for us, it takes a little more effort on our parts to get ourselves into a frame of mind where we can be attentive to our husbands needs.
I would encourage you to creatively explore ways you can be more available to satisfy your husband and he in turn, you. For as much as Paul instructs the men to be available for the wife, and the wife to be available for the husband, we need to keep in mind that sex is for mutual pleasure. Both are to be satisfied. Both are to serve.
Now let's think about this in the ways we are different. Intimacy for most women comes in knowing that our husbands love us. It's in things like handholding or snuggling on the couch during a movie. We feel loved when our husbands do the dishes, fold the laundry, or bring us coffee in the morning. Where we might be able to get by just knowing that our husbands love us, our husbands don't think in the same way.
Love for them comes in the intimacy of sex. They feel most loved when we are fully connecting with them in the moment of intimacy. For as much as you might not be thinking about making love to your husband tonight, chances are HE is thinking about making love to you.
And let's be honest, ladies, there is temptation all over the place for our men. From commercials to magazines, TV shows to the Internet, to simply how some women dress, it doesn't take much to get a mans juices flowing. Yes, we're going to be tired. Yes, we're going to want to go to bed as soon as possible. And No, we might not always be in the mood as often as they are. But if we forget how important sex is to our husbands, we run the risk of temptation rearing it's ugly head in our marriages. God knew that, that's why he had Paul write to the church in Corinth concerning intimacy in marriage.
I promise you, if you make the effort to woo your husband, you will find it to be worth it in the long run.
Ladies, there is temptation all over the place for our men.
(With a snarky attitude.)
"How come you never answer your phone when I call! I was trying to ask you a question, but you didn't answer!"
(Sweet, kind and calm.)
"Hey, did you see that I tried to call you? I didn't get answer."
Can you imagine the difference? And do you see the choice I had to make...?
But because of that seminar, I learned how important it is to speak respectfully to my husband. I have often been very convicted and aware of how I have made comments here and there that would make him feel disrespected, Ouch! That's not what I want, but honestly this is something we as women will struggle with more and more in this crazy culture we live in. Everywhere we turn we see images of men; boys, husbands, dads, even grandfathers, being disrespected by women.
Turn on just about any TV show and watch the way the dad or male figure is being treated. He's usually the character who doesn't do anything right and needs the woman to set him straight and in those shows, she usually does by her words or her actions. It's being ingrained in us to think of men as idiots. We need to consciously fight against that as women and as wives.
I have often been very convicted and aware of how I have made comments here and there that would make him feel disrespected, Ouch!
"Each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband."
In these verses, Paul is talking to the church in Ephesus, giving instruction to Christian Households. This verse comes at the end of a section where he is telling husbands how to sacrificially love their wives. This shows how well God knows what women need, He did make us after all! We need to know that we are loved by our men.
But what do our husbands need? They need our respect.
I asked Jay, how important it was to be respected, he said, "You know how important it is for you to know you are loved? That's how it is with respect for me." I don't know about you but I do know that I like to know that my man is crazy in love with me!
So I asked him what were some things that I do or say that make him feel disrespected and he said, it's mostly in the little comments that chip away at him and the body language I might show.
Remember my example from earlier about the cell phone? It's about choices.
You know how important it is for you to know you are loved? That's how it is with respect for me.
Here's what I think...
On a busy morning, your man helps you get the kids ready to get out the door and you look at the outfit he picked out for your little girl to wear and you cannot believe that was his choice. Instead of saying something sassy about his outfit choice, you gracefully thank him for his help. And maybe next time you set out her clothes ahead of time.
Or, maybe you get into an argument right before your heading out the door for a girls night out. Respecting him would mean you leave your disagreement at home and work it out later instead of telling your girlfriends all of his flaws and getting their opinions on how right you are and how wrong he is. This one is huge!!
As much as we need to know we're loved, our men need to know that we respect them. And when we know that we are loved, it's much easier to respect our husbands, right?
But what about when we don't feel completely loved. Now don't think that because your husband isn't good at loving you well, that your off the hook with respecting him. It's a circle effect. It may take us as wives, respecting our husbands, to get ball rolling towards them learning how to love us.
I would encourage you to have an honest conversation with your husband about how he feels regarding the way you respect him. Be willing to really listen to him, You may be surprised in what he says and it may be one of the most important conversations you have. Be willing to change some of the ways you respond or speak to him.
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Phrases like these describe the differences between Men and Women. And there are differences; vast differences. We like the seat down, they leave it up. They can drive for hours, we need to stop every ten minutes. There's no doubt about it, we are different.
But as we think of God's design for marriage, a covenant between one man and one woman, "till death do they part"... we have to ask, "God, why didn't you make us a little more alike, so that maybe, living together might be a little easier." Wouldn't that be nice?
Ever since Adam and Eve found themselves on the other side of Eden, relationships have been plagued with issues, especially in our marriages. This morning, I was asked to come and talk about relationships, and as I prayed about what I might share with you, I felt the Lord leading me to consider a few areas in our husband/wife relationships where we often find difference.
During that first year, we were so eager to learn all we could about each other and our marriage. And to be honest, that learning hasn't stopped.
During that first year, we were so eager to learn all we could about each other and our marriage. And to be honest, that learning hasn't stopped. Through moving 8 times, switching jobs, fluctuating incomes, 5 children, and all the highs and lows God has led us through, I have found that there are a few things that must be given special attention, especially as we think about our marriages. So, I thought I'd share with you two things I've learned on my 20 year journey of marriage to my sweet husband.
Ready? It is super important that we wives remember to RESPECT and SATISFY our husbands.
I shared these thoughts earlier this week with a group of women at a M.O.P.S. (Mother's of PreSchoolers) gathering. I want to share them here, now with all of you. Let me invite you to join me over the next couple of days, as I share some thoughts as to why I believe these two topics are so important for the marital relationship. To help share these thoughts, Jay and I have decided to split the two topics up, posting them one at a time. So look for a post on respecting your husband on Wednesday, followed by a post on satisfying your husband on Thursday.
We hope that you will join me this week as we look at ways to love our husbands better!
In the post, Rethinking Dating with a Large Family, we shared the idea looking at date night not as "date NIGHT", but maybe "date DAY." For larger families with busy schedules, squeezing in a regular weekly or month date night is a real challenge. Just try finding some privacy and one-on-one time in the evening as your fishing homework, chores, bath time, bedtime, and clean up. Just saying all of those tasks is exhausting.
So what do you do when you can't set aside time for routine date nights? You start having date days! Instead of trying to go out on a week night or a weekend evening, think about how you might share time during the day together. Make it a Date Day!
As part of the post we gave a very short list of about 5 mid-day date ideas, with the promise to come back and expand that short list. So, today we're here with a list of 25 mid-day date ideas for you and your spouse!
25 Dating Ideas for the Day Time
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This list really got us thinking about ideas for other "date day" and "date night" activities. so, watch for a few more lists coming soon! In the meantime, try out one or more of our ideas than come back and let us know what you did, and how it went! We'd love to hear from you!
- jay and amy