MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.

Godly Husband: Are You Keeping Your Wedding Vows?

April 5th, 2007 Viewed 4464 times

olderhusbandandwifeheader.jpgI asked the wives this question, and now, I’m going to turn around and ask it to you…

For me, my wedding day was an interesting day.  I was staying with my groomsmen in a room in a hotel the night before.  They gave me the cot!  And that morning I forgot that I had all the toiletries in my get-a-way car.  I had to shave in the church’s bathroom sink!

Remember back to your day– the day that you stood in front of the whole congregation as your bride came down the aisle and everyone rose to their feet.  That day when something happened at the wedding you’ll never forget– and it wasn’t saying “I do” to your sweetheart but it could have been anything from the wedding party that wasn’t in the reception to the ring bearer who kept stepping on your shoe during the prayer because he had done that with your father the night before.

In any case, you said certain things before God and some gathered witnesses.  You may have said things like “love, honor, cherish” or “for better or worse, richer or poorer, sickness and in health” or things of that nature.  Do you realize the gravity of those vows before God?

Check out these verses on the topic:

When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer not to pay it; for he hath no pleasure in fools: pay that which thou hast vowed.  Better is it that thou shouldest not vow, than that thou shouldest vow and not pay. – Ecclesiastes 5:4-5

Remember Jephthah?  He made a vow before the Lord in Judges 11:29-40 where he pledged to give God as a burnt offering the first thing that came out of his door when he returned to his home.  That ended up being his little daughter– and regardless of how Jephthah fulfilled this vow (whether through killing the daughter or sending her away to the Lord’s service) he was bound to comply.

So with us, men, when we give our word it is our bond.  I know that I, as a man, am typically a whole lot more loyal than I should be.  We should make sure that our loyalty is to God and our wives, and that we are men of our words– loving, honoring and cherishing them.

Like a lot of the things in the Christian life, if we’re not going forward in Christ, then we are falling away from Him– so is this command to uphold your vows.  If you’ve been failing in this area (or if you fail) then you need to seek repentance and get it right with God and your wife.

Godly Husband: Are You Precise?

March 29th, 2007 Viewed 3380 times

olderhusbandandwifeheader.jpgTo me, there’s nothing that is more frustrating than trying to communicate with someone and not using the same terminology or where things have different meanings.  Precision in our communication is important if we are to communicate our needs, wants, and thoughts.

Since you and your wife are two different people with two different ways of looking at things, it is important (if you are going to minister her fully as a leader and a Christian brother) if you communicate precisely with her.

Taking care with precision is much more difficult than one may expect.  Men typically deal with two main groups of people: Those at work and those in the home.  This being the case, there are two sets of vocabulary and things that each group does not know or does not know the context of.

If we don’t pay attention to being precise, we may have the possibility of becoming agitated that our wives don’t understand all that we’ve been through, or what we are saying.  In reality this is our own fault!

There are two main reasons I can see why we need to be precise:

  1. To promote harmony, communication, and prevent aggravation
  2. To be able to communicate our needs to our wives as our helpers.

So, men, it’s up to us to navigate our different “worlds” and communicate to her in love.

Question Idea taken from From Dreadlock to Wedlock

Godly Husband: Are You Pro-Active?

March 22nd, 2007 Viewed 3711 times

olderhusbandandwifeheader.jpgWho, in your family makes the first move?  I’m not talking about a board game, or even when it comes to the first one to get out of bed, but what I am talking about is in your relationship– who makes the first move?

When we look at the example left for us in Scripture as well as the commands of scripture we see that whether it’s reconciling with a brother that you have offended or taking the lead, someone has to do it.

In the case of a family, we (as husbands) are the head of our family, and by virtue of this leadership position we need to be the ones seeking out reconciliation of our wives to ourselves when we sense the need.  Let’s face it guys, we know that there are some times that we have either done something that we know our wives don’t like– or there are times that she is sending us clear signals (whether we want to acknowledge them or not) that something is wrong.  In these cases we are responsible to go to her and make things right.

It should also be our move first to lead our children and wife in the way of godliness, to establish family devotions, to be the one to want to go to church, and to lead in doing the difficult things.  With the leadership we are given through Christ comes much responsibility.

I guess the question is, are we men enough?

Hat tip to From Dreadlock to Wedlock

Godly Husband: How Are You Treating "Your" Body

March 15th, 2007 Viewed 5109 times, 1 so far today

olderhusbandandwifeheader.jpgThere are two commands in the New Testament that are very similar.  One of them was the one that we covered with the wives is a previous post.  That one had to do with the fact that your body is not your own, and neither is hers. The Word of God asks Godly Wives to make sure that they are intimately available.

The other passage that I think is related, and of special importance for us men as we think about our spouse’s body being ours and vice versa, is the one that says that we are to love our neighbor as ourselves.

You see, no one has to be taught to love themselves– we do it automatically.  As is obvious with the current trend of justifying everything because it’s something we want to do, we know that people naturally seek their own best interest, and it’s tempting to do this in the area of marriage and sex as well.

Relating to Sex

You see, I don’t think that we men have the same dilemma when it comes to being intimate or seeking intimacy as the women do.  Certainly we do have the problem in the way we approach it, how much time it takes, and whether we’re all about a single act (pardon my bluntness) or include the whole emotional aspect of it.

What we need to realize is that if her body is ours, and we are to love our neighbor, that means that there are certain times that we are going to have to choose not to exercise our ownership for the good of your wife.  There are times where it’s not physically, emotionally or otherwise wise to engage in that kind of activity.  There are times where you are going to have to be more giving than receiving.

Men, we need to not use this passage to force our wives to do something that they don’t want to do, while at the same time realizing that we belong to them as well, and since they are our most treasured vessel we are to be taking great care with them.

Relating to Grooming

The other area that I think is important when thinking about your body being hers is that it is important that she be able to comment on how she would like you to look and you take her suggestions to heart and consider implementing them.

When you were dating, you’d do anything that your girl friend suggested.  Why is it when you get married (and your body is not your own anymore) that you now suddenly “have rights”?  I’m not saying that you should totally change your lifestyle, but I am saying that you should be open to her input, and aim to please her!

Seeking your wife’s happiness in your presentation is important– and I believe that you’ll see that she’ll try harder to please you in her appearance as well!

Godly Husband: How is Your Thought Life?

March 8th, 2007 Viewed 3735 times

olderhusbandandwifeheader.jpgThe danger of writing a post talking about how wives should be intimately available to their husbands is two fold:

  1. Men automatically think that this is a one way thing– their wives should be more intimate.
  2. Men somehow think it justifies those times where it’s difficult to control where their mind goes.

You see, we live in a society and culture today that is bombarding us with sexual images.  Part of the admonition to the wives as far as intimacy is to know the reality of the way that men are wired and to help keep us from temptation.  But this is not solely the wife’s job.

Men, it is important for us– yea, imperative– that we work hard at avoiding things that could even be near the line of those things that are unacceptable for us to be allowing into our mind.  The mixture of our chemistry and our mind can mean that we store and replay things that we shouldn’t– and that our wives would have no problem forgetting.

This means that we have to make a conscious effort to guard our minds and our eyes.  There are two methods to doing this:

  1. Prayer and thinking about what you are doing before doing it.  If you’re in prayer, you’re less likely to go somewhere even questionable.  If you’re thinking about what you are doing rather than responding to impulses or desires, you’ll stop before going to that place, clicking that link or watching that video.
  2. Consistently practice making your wife the center of your life.  Remember how there were no other women for you while you were dating?  You wouldn’t even dream of looking at another?  Why was that?  It was because you were putting all your energy into winning the one woman that you love.  Keep doing that.

You see, if you’re in prayer and your focused on what would please your Lord and your wife you will find that the desire to see how close you can get to the line will be less, because you have correctly focused your desire.

This doesn’t let either party off the hook as far as maintaining a correct physical relationship, but it does not say that it’s all the wife’s fault if you’re falling into temptation.

Godly Husband: Are You There?

February 8th, 2007 Viewed 5649 times

olderhusbandandwifeheader.jpgOne of the strangest feelings I had this entire birthing process was the feeling I got when I received the second phone call telling me that my wife was going to have the baby soon.  It came from the woman that was supposed to take her to the shower and ended up taking her to the hospital.

That woman, for illness reasons, was not able to stay in the delivery room with my wife, and she was calling to tell me just how close she was to giving birth and that I needed to get over there as soon as possible.

It was at that moment that I had the first tinge that I might miss my daughter’s arrival.  Instead of the calm person I usually am, I started having to think through alternate plans about what to do with my kids, wondering what happened to my mother, and wondering if my wife would have the baby without me.

Godly Husband, does your very being long to be there for your family– for the big moments as well as the small ones?  Do you have an internal longing to be present with them– to comfort them, to encourage them, and to make time for them.

I’ll be honest, it’s easy to have that longing for the big things.  But I think that somewhere we as men start thinking more about other priorities than our family.  It may start out small– the extra time spent at work, the second job to get some money, the church function or meeting that you must attend or something will fall apart.

Eventually, anything that you do continually will become a habit.  You’ll find yourself with the new capability of reasoning away why you don’t have to have family meals anymore, why you don’t have to make the kids’ baseball practices or spend time with them.

Men, we need to be vigilant about how we look at our family and the time that we assign to it.  We need to guard that time, see it as the precious time that it is, and prevent ourselves from looking at our wives as the enemy when she says that you’re not spending enough time with you kids.  Because, let’s face it, you only have them in your home a little while.  Can you really spend too much time with them?

Godly Husband: How Well Do You Know Your Wife?

January 25th, 2007 Viewed 9437 times, 1 so far today

olderhusbandandwifeheader.jpgGuys, how well do you know your wife?  To some degree, we have to know our wives– they’re probably the person that we’ve spent the most time with on a daily basis (I guess, though, most of that could be sleeping!).

But MInTheGap, how can I really know my wife (you’re asking)?  I mean, women are from Venus, and they think differently, emotionally or whatever.  Just when I think that I understand her, she changes.

Godly Husband: What Do You Care Most About?

January 18th, 2007 Viewed 3962 times

olderhusbandandwifeheader.jpgHard question, guys.  We all seem to have something that we really enjoy doing, whether that’s watching television, playing video/computer games or working on the car.  For me, it’s blogging.  I find real enjoyment and pleasure from being able to write and share my thoughts and ideas.

Whatever the case, you will show what you care most about by the amount of time you put into caring for it and maintaining it.  Take a minute now– I’ll wait– and think about your day in terms of how much time you spend on what outside of working (or even when you’re working).

Godly Husband: Using Your Perspective

January 11th, 2007 Viewed 4241 times

olderhusbandandwifeheader.jpgOne of the most difficult things for a lady to do is to be inside of a man’s mind– and saying this, I’m sure I’ll get the women out there to agree that they don’t really want to see everything there. In the case of how a woman’s form effects a man, I think that women know the extremes, but not necessarily where the line is. Sometimes what separates something acceptable for a Godly woman to wear can differ on how tight, how low, or how much skin is shown– and because there are no hard and fast rules, it’s up to you as the husband and father to pay attention to what the women in your house are wearing.

If you’re looking for specifics on what to wear, ladies, you’ve come to the wrong place. The best set of rules I came across for lady like apparel was at college, and a lot of those rules were more practical than Biblical. Dresses must touch the knee, must wear stockings at all times, no pants unless you’re doing some physical activity– that kind of thing. However, you have a great detector for what men think about in your home.

You see, men, she knows what she is trying to do with her clothing– and there is the first battle. If you have a young lady or wife that is trying to get sexual attention, that is one thing. That woman needs to be corrected and instructed in Biblical precepts. However, in this current culture and desire to at least look modern, some women can come across entirely different than they want to. But you know exactly what they have put on is saying.

There are three different challenges, men, in helping our wives and daughters determine the modesty of their clothing:

  1. Training them not to buy things that are immodest so you don’t have to deal with having something in your house and what to do with it.
  2. Catching something that, while modest, is worn in at an immodest or inappropriate time.
  3. Knowing when that article of clothing you like seeing your wife in is not appropriate for daily wear– is she going to be seen by children or others in a way that is “for your eyes only?”

Not easy things in the slightest– but we need to be engaged. The earlier the better. We need to be helping our wives be good role models of clothing to our daughters. We need to keep our daughters pure in their outward appearance. We need to help our sons to see what a godly woman looks like. Not an easy thing, but a necessary thing.

Godly Husband: Do You Do Too Much?

January 4th, 2007 Viewed 5159 times

olderhusbandandwifeheader.jpgHusbands, let’s be honest, there are many times when we have our priorities out of whack. There are a lot of things we as guys would like to do, some we need to do, and some we just plain refuse to do. But the reason that we use to determine which category life’s tasks fall into is often how it impacts what “I want to do” or “what I feel like doing” rather than is it what is best for our families.

This is closely coupled with where the request is coming from. If it’s a request to do something in the home, I think that we’re much more inclined to say we don’t want to do it or it is someone else’s job than we are to step up to the plate and do it. However, for some, if it’s from the outside (say a boss, a pastor, etc.) we’re more inclined to take on responsibility that takes away from time with our family.

I’ve just come off a three year stint as Deacon in my local church. When I started, we were expecting our second child, and I asked the pastor just how much time the job would entail. He told me that they have a monthly meeting and occasionally a meeting on a weekend if there was something important to discuss.

That was before the pastor resigned, the church split, I had to take over as pulpit committee chair, and then got picked for deacon chair and have had yet another controversial issue come to the front. All the while, one meeting a month became one meeting a week, and the meetings ran from when I got out of work until when my kids were in bed.

When it came time for nominations, I told the pastor that I was not willing to to be on this year because I needed a chance to clear my head, and because of the soon arrival of our fourth child. Young children, as I’m sure you are aware, need a lot of time and attention if you want to bring them up in a godly home.

I say all this to illustrate that men naturally (or should have) have a sense of duty and honor that makes them want to step up to the plate and complete the task. Well, you stepped up to the plate on your wedding day and said that you’d be with your wife in a lot of different conditions– and that included doing the tasks in the home that you may not want to do. It also included not taking on too many responsibilities that keep you out of the home.

Paul talks in the New Testament about the glories of the single life, and the big one that he mentions that relates to this topic is that he says that the married person has to be concerned with how he ministers to his wife, rather than the single person who can be totally consumed with his ministry to God.

Godly Husband, do you do too much to be of good use to your family? If so, it’s time to start practicing saying “no.”

MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.