“Through the eyes of Grace…”

 Day Twelve:

“With all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love.” ~Eph. 4:2

Part of the difficulty you may face as you continue in this 30-day challenge to encourage your husband is that you really are struggling to find positive things to praise. Perhaps the problem is not with your husband. Have you checked your own heart?

Sometimes we get disillusioned because of our own unreasonable or unrealistic
expectations (Prov. 13:12). It may not be that our mates are doing something wrong; it’s simply that we expect too much in some areas.

Our expectations must be met in God alone, and then we will have the right perspective to ask God for the healing and grace we need to respond to others.

How sad that we give more grace to others than to those in our own homes. Today, try to look at your husband through eyes of grace. Verbally thank your husband for what he is already doing.

By Nancy Leigh DeMoss
Published by Revive Our Hearts, © 2005. Permission granted to photocopy in the exact form, including copyright. All other uses require written permission.

Revive Our Hearts * P.O. Box 2000, Niles, MI 49120 * www.ReviveOurHearts.com 

The posts of the past few days have caused a little stir, and I suspect today’s may also.  Today’s challenge is not so much an assignment we have to accomplish as it is a challenge to look at ourselves in the mirror as wives. Sometimes finding something about your husband to praise every day can be…well a challenge!  But sometimes the reason is not is not because of your husband, but rather because of you and your own heart and attitudes.  Today we face ourselves and consider Matthew 7:3-5 “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?  How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye?  You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”  

Our culture right now teaches us unique and sort of weird things as women and wives.  The feminist movement tried to correct a real issue (namely: if a male and female with the same education and experience do the same work…the pay should be the same) and then somehow veered to the left and turned that into a view of “equality” that means women get the benefits of a relationship without holding themselves to the responsibilities.  And if a man does try to hold her to the responsibilities, that’s being a “chauvinist” or “sexist.”

Recently I posted Day 9 of the Husband Encouragement Challenge which was the day about listening to your husband.  The concept was not to let him boss you around or “you have to listen to what he says” like you have to listen to your parents–but rather a challenge to focus on what he is trying to share and then repeat it back to validate him and his thoughts.  He has just as much right to his thoughts and feelings as you do!  Plus as his wife it would seem natural that you might care about him.  That day, a male person posted a comment “Wow, with all the issues with marriages I don’t think I’ve heard any of it say to listen to the husband. This was kind of a neat post. Thanks.”  Does that strike anyone else as shocking–that with all the marriage advice and so-called “experts” out there, no one recommends listening to the male in the relationship?  I know for a fact we women expect our men to listen to us!  If it were TRUE equality, wouldn’t that hold us responsible to listen to them? That’s a kind of sad commentary!

Then today I noticed on my brother-in-law‘s blog–Word Around the Net–that he has a post about the “Obedient Wives Clubs” that are springing up in Southeast Asia and catching a few eyes.  Now make no mistake, my brother-in-law has never been married, so it seems to me that he (and the commenters on that post) would be a somewhat decent candidate for what the “average single guy” thinks about women and wives and such. Know what I saw?  That single men see that women apply “equality” when it means the man has to adapt or change to fit the woman, but do not see “equality” when it means looking at themselves and changing or adapting to fit their man!

And this all leads to today’s challenge.  COULD IT BE that part of the reason you have difficulty finding things to praise about your husband is because you expect him to change but don’t change for him?  COULD IT BE that you can’t find things to praise about him because you expect him to listen to you and validate you but you don’t listen to or validate him?  COULD IT BE  that you don’t apply the same “equal” rules to yourself that you expect of him?  If that is the case, please don’t be discouraged (or stiff-necked and stubborn).  Hey I have to admit I was the same way until I saw it!  If you realize this is you,  it’s okay we’ve all made mistakes–the difference is that those who are wise *learn* from their mistakes and stop doing them!  So look at your own self and if you are not looking at your husband through the eyes of Grace–start tonight.

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