“Thank you for being my warrior.”
I first whispered these words in my husband’s ear two weeks ago as we were getting ready for dinner on the FamilyLife Love Like You Mean it Cruise.
He stopped and smiled.
I’ll never forget the way his face lit up. “Wow. Thank you,” he replied. “That is really, really nice to hear.”
Smiling at his response, I thought “Pastor Dave and Ann Wilson are so right”! Earlier that day I had heard this couple talk about marital intimacy and what speaks to a husband and to a wife. They both shared how a man desires to be wanted and needed by his wife and how it helps them become the warrior God designed them to be.
I like the word. I like what it means and I really like thinking of my husband as a warrior. It’s sexy.
The next morning, I looked into my husband’s eyes and said “Good morning my warrior husband.”
As we were walking to breakfast, my husband shared from his heart, “If you tell me I’m your warrior. If you say you are proud of me and you want me (wink wink), I know I can do anything.”
I had no idea what that word communicates to him until I started speaking it. I now use it every day.
When You Don’t Feel Like Encouraging Your Husband
There was a time in our marriage when I withheld words of encouragement from my husband. I wasn’t prepared for the stress that came with blending two families and I wanted him to take the lead and make it better. I didn’t like how frustrated he could get over things or how he ignored the chaos but wanted to “fix” me. Yes, I recall the time when he told me that if I was just more organized I wouldn’t have the stress I had (oh how Ann Wilson speaks to my soul).
During that season I was waiting for him to be the husband and father I wanted him to be instead of speaking life into his heart to encourage him to be the warrior God designed him to be. It was during that time the Holy Spirit prompted me to work on me and leave my husband to God. As my relationship with Christ grew deeper, I grew stronger, wiser and my worth rested in Him alone instead of where I had been putting it – in the words and actions of my husband.
As I surrendered to Christ, I found myself speaking words of life to my husband – even when I didn’t feel those words. The more I spoke those words of life….. the more I began to see him in God’s light. Please know I don’t believe any wife should try to or can can change her husband. That’s the job of the Holy Spirit.
I am saying that God calls us to live out His word daily not just when we “feel” like it. Giving our spouse to Christ and speaking words of respect and encouragement into our husband both softens our heart for our spouse and speaks life into his soul.
Then the word WARRIOR came along.
Two weeks ago it was a word I felt called to use after hearing Dave and Ann speak. Now WARRIOR is a gift I cherish IN my husband and one I want to be a part of drawing out of him!
After I saw the puffed chest, the smile and the increased affection towards me when I called my husband a warrior I began to incorporate the word into our daily life and over the past two weeks I have noticed a change in how I treat my husband and in how he responds to me. God is good.
Take the 40 Days Challenge to Encourage the Warrior in Your Husband
You can’t change your spouse. God can. Best you can do is work on your heart and give it to Christ. Ask Him to do a work in you to see your spouse the way He sees him — as a Warrior.
Your husband may try your patience with the way he parents his kids….. He may wound your heart with harsh words. He may try and fix things for you (even tell you to get more organized). I’m not saying any of that is ok. What I am saying is you can encourage him despite his actions. Encouraging is NOT condoning.
Over the next 40 days…. I’ll encourage you to grow closer to Jesus. To use Rise Up words and not Tear Down terms with your spouse.
I’ll share scripture, stories and a challenge each day to encourage the Warrior in your husband. I ask you to get a notebook or journal to capture your thoughts and prayers and record blessings you notice over these next 40 days – take note of blessings in how you see your spouse. I’ll also ask you to gather some sticky notes, a dry erase marker and your husband’s favorite treat (snack and/or candy).
One thing I’ll ask you not to carry into these 40 days is expectations. Trust that you are building into your husband and your marriage and don’t measure it in flesh response but rather in surrendering to what God calls you to do.
Day 1 Challenge
Acknowledge the good in your husband by thanking him.
Thank him for working hard for you. Thank him for taking good care of himself. Give him thanks for taking out the garbage or fixing something around the house. Thank him. Tell him in word or in note. Put a note on the steering wheel of his car, etc….
If you really want to blow his mind thank him for being a warrior.
My prayer for you is that you will find peace of heart as you surrender your spouse to Christ, lay down trying to change him and embrace the idea of encouraging the warrior within.
When a man’s ways please the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him. Proverbs 16:7 (NKJV)
Take the journey with me….. Are you in?
Join our Closed Facebook Page – 40 Days Deep With Christ – Encourage the Warrior in Your Husband.
Living a life of thanks to Christ includes being obedient to His word and listening for and following His direction for our life. Linking this up with the #LiveFree community. Check out www.tsuzanneeller.com to read other posts about living a life of thanks to Christ.