This seems to be the resounding theme I have been hearing recently when talking to women, when working on the sermon for our upcoming Marriage Conference and in my personal time with God. I have met so many women lately who have strong personalities and are really disrespectful and don’t even know it. I recognize it so much better than I used to. If you read my last post you will know the reason I recognize it so easily is because it was a HUGE problem for me. It has been something that for the last 7 years or so I have been working on. I still have days I feel like “Ned in the first reader” when it comes to becoming less disrespectful. Every once in a while in a effort to check on my progress I ask my gorgeous hubby how I’m doing. I did this just last night. He gave a great analogy that I wanted to share. He said that going from really bad to good is not as hard as going from good to great. I was happy to hear him applaud my progress in this department. (Excuse me while I take a moment and enjoy the success I have had to date.) After his comment I was struck with the similarity of becoming more respectful and dieting. Okay so I know that this may seem like a stretch but this is how it connects. When you start a diet the more weight you have to lose the faster you lose. All girls know the last 5-10 pounds are torturous to lose, well it’s that way with becoming a respectful wife. If you are blatantly disrespectful then it is easier to notice and change some of your ways. However, the more subtle ways of being disrespectful are harder to see and harder to correct. At least that has been my experience. So I just want to start by sharing some of the biggies and we will work towards the subtle ways of disrespect. Let’s face it until you become aware of the big ones, you will struggle to find the more subtle ones. Also, when you change the big ones your hubby will be so happy you will find you have more grace of the subtle ones.
The first “biggie” I will tackle is what I call, “You’re a Failure.” Feeling like a failure is one thing that many people, especially men struggle with. Men are created with a strong desire to succeed, to conquer, to win the war. However, many guys struggle, feeling like they are not able to do this. As wives, we are there to be their supporter, encourager, and believe in them and what they do. Often in my past I would feel it was my duty as a “good” wife to point out the shortcomings of my husband. This of course, was all in an effort to help him get better. Here’s the truth about that. Not only did he not need my help in identifying his shortcomings, by doing that I just made him feel worse about what he already saw in himself. I learned that trading in the magnifying glass for some pom poms was much more effective in helping him be the man he and I both wanted him to be. Have you ever heard yourself say to your husband, “Can you do anything right?” Perhaps you have said, “Just get out of my way and let me do it.” Maybe this all time favorite, “I guess I’ll just have to do it myself.” These are frequent comments I hear wives saying to their husbands. These are among the most damaging words you can say if you want your husband to be successful. Instead of those responses why not try some of these, “I love that you can do anything you set your mind too.” “I know that you always give your best effort to make sure you get the job done and I respect that about you.” “Wow, what a great job, I love watching you be so successful.” Truly by changing the way you speak to your husband in the area of success, you find that you will begin to see him be more and more successful.
Again, I encourage you to begin to listen to yourself. Begin working to become more aware of what you are saying and doing in regards to your husband’s success. You can help him become everything you and he want him to be by making some changes in the way you speak and respond to him. You can become a truly respectful wife, it just takes effort. I promise the benefit you see from this change will not only make a difference with your husband it will also be life changing for you. YOU CAN DO IT!!!!!