VIDEO Husbands Love Your Wives by Affirming Them Publicly

By Josh Weidmann -January 7, 2022

husbands love

So on Sunday, I took a pause from preaching to love my wife publicly.

In front of our whole church, I chose to publicly affirm my wife. I rarely use the pulpit to make personal announcements. I believe that when I am on stage to preach God’s Word, I need to do just that and make it as little about me as possible. However, there are those moments in my life and ministry where I chose to make a statement about my family, ministry or circumstances that I want everyone to hear.

This weekend we celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary. Molly and I dated for nine years and now have been married for 10. We have five kids. Needless to say, it has been a full decade. I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for the love that my wife gave me through the trials and joys of life.

How Can I Honor My Wife?

To model what it means to have admiration for your wife, and as a way of publicly affirming her, I told the congregation how grateful I was for Molly. I gave her flowers, hugged her and told her that I loved her in front of everyone. I believe God allows the preacher to use his life in the pulpit to preach, but not just with His words. At times it is good to step outside the text to model gratefulness for the richness of God’s blessings in life. This too can preach loudly. Here is what I think it allowed for and why this was worth the moment of declaring my love for my wife publicly:

First off, my heart was not for the praise of man—not for me, and not for Molly. My intention was to let the congregation know that she is in this ministry with me and I could not do it without her. I wanted them to praise God for His work through her.

Second, it lets other women in the congregation know that I have eyes only for her. I am proud she is my wife and I work hard to protect our covenant.

Third, it modeled for other men the necessity to give praise to our wives for all they endure for us, with us and of us.

Finally, marriage is a picture of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The fact that a sinner like me can be loved as I am by Molly portrays the Gospel fact that Christ loves us too and accepts us regardless of our faults.

So while it may have been a pause from the preaching to do this on the stage in front of everyone, I believe it honored God as I honored my wife. I was able to affirm my marriage covenant, use my life to preach, love on my wife, and let the world know that God’s goodness in my life is tangibly seen in a person I call, “Babe.” I love you, Molly, with all my heart.

Here is a clip of what I said today:

The Real Reason I Do Things I Don’t Like for My Husband

  •  October 27, 2021 Brie Gowen

Last night I was leaving the hospital after pulling a 13-hour shift. I was tired, but I knew my day was far from over. I had three children six and under that I’d have to pick up from grandma’s house, but as with anything parenting related it wasn’t as easy as it sounded. We had one vehicle that could fit all our children in it, and since my husband had dropped them off that morning he still had said vehicle. Being a restaurant owner, he was still working when I left the hospital, and I was on my way to switch vehicles with him so I could get the kids home. Home where I’d give baths, get them ready for bed, probably feed them again, brush teeth. You get the story. Long night ahead after a long day.

But as I headed to our compact car I received a text from my husband.

Why don’t you just go home and relax. I’ll pick up the kids when I get off. 😘

Y’all, that sounded absolutely divine to me. A full hour to sit around on the couch after such a long day at the bedside performing patient care! Yes!

Here’s the thing, though. I knew my husband was tired too. He had gone to work just an hour after myself, and he’d put in his own thirteen hour shift. In fact, he worked more long shifts a week than I did. Yet here he was sacrificing his time so I could have a quiet moment. He knew that being mostly home with the children that I seldom got that quiet time, and I loved him all the more that he saw that.

When I got home I didn’t retire to the couch. Instead I stopped by the store on the way home for a missing ingredient for his favorite meal, and I spent that extra hour preparing dinner for when he walked in the door. I was tired, but I was also grateful for a spouse who helped me. Sometimes I did things for my husband I didn’t feel like doing, but then again so did he. There’s something about serving in love that makes something you don’t necessary feel like doing not so much of a chore. It actually makes it rewarding.

And when you can open your eyes to see beyond your own contributions to your marriage and family you’ll notice more readily what your partner puts forth. Thank God for teamwork!

We both slept in this morning.

10 reasons many of us struggle praying with our spouses each day

By Chuck Lawless, CP Guest Contributor| Thursday, June 17, 2021

marriage, rings, couple
Unsplash/Samantha Gades

Some years ago, I wrote a post entitled, “Why Spouses Should Pray Together Each Day.” I still believe it’s important that we make this commitment. I’ve realized since then, though, that the struggle to take this step is still a real one for many of us. Here’s why:

1. We don’t pray much in general. Prayer is a struggle for many of us. When that’s the case, it’s not likely we’ll pray with our spouses, either.  

2. Our marriages aren’t really built on the foundation of God. We might attend church together, and others think of us as a strong Christian family—but faith is not the bedrock of our home.

3. Our spouses know best when we’re not really walking with God. They know when our prayers don’t come from a pure, obedient heart—so we don’t pray with them at all.

4. We convince ourselves we can’t find the time to pray each day. That may be the case if our goal is to pray together for hours, but that’s not my thinking. I want us to start somewhere, even if the prayers are short and sweet.

5. We’re uncomfortable praying in front of others. For some, that includes praying in front of our spouse when it’s just the two of us in the room.

6. We don’t like the level of spiritual intimacy prayer requires. The intimacy of praying together is, in some ways, the deepest intimacy we can experience—and that makes us anxious.

7. Often, our spouse’s level of commitment to Christ far exceeds ours. If we’re honest, we’re intimidated to pray when that’s the situation.

8. We’ve tried it before, and it didn’t work then. So, we’ve now given up on trying, even though both of us may have grown since then.

9. We count our prayer of grace over a meal as sufficient. Yes, that’s often with our spouse, but I’m talking about something more intentional here. I’m talking about genuinely seeking God together.

10. No one’s ever challenged us to pray with our spouse daily. That’s my challenge to you today via this post. And to me. 

What would you add to this list?


Originally published in Church Answers

Chuck Lawless currently serves as Professor of Evangelism and Missions and Dean of Graduate Studies at Southeastern Seminary. A conference speaker and author or co-author of more than ten books, including Spiritual Warfare: Biblical Truth for VictoryDiscipled WarriorsPutting on the ArmorMentor, and Spiritual Warfare in the Storyline of Scripture, Dr. Lawless has a strong interest in discipleship and mentoring.

You can connect with Dr. Lawless on both Twitter and Facebook.

https://www.christianpost.com/voices/10-reasons-many-of-us-struggle-praying-with-our-spouses-each-day.html

Beginning Ministry and Family Life

by Drew DiNardo

Three of the greatest moments in my life were when I got married, when I had children, and when I began full-time pastoral ministry. Since all three of these happened within a short period of time, there was much I needed to learn and to learn fast. My education was very beneficial, but no class lecture could prepare me for the pressures of balancing my marriage, my pastoral ministry, my children, and my church. It was going to be a process, and through those early years I learned many lessons.

The truth is, a minister’s credibility is assessed by how he relates to his family and how they respond to his oversight. Godliness in the home is as important as godliness in our private lives. In fact, as Alistair Begg and Derek Prime point out:

The proof of godliness is our godliness in the home. This may seem an extremely high standard, and it is. But the home is the most strategic sphere of witness because it is there that we demonstrate how genuinely we do what we tell others to do. . . . If we neglect our families, we eventually undermine our entire pastoral and teaching ministry.1

This can be a frightening thought. The truth is that we can no more make our families holy than we can make the members of our church holy. Besides praying, faithfully leading them spiritually, and actively modeling and instilling in them biblical values, there is nothing that can be done to ensure that they will embrace Christ and live spiritually mature lives.

So, what is a minister to do? To fully answer that would require a book-length treatment, but let me point out one important principle that is often overlooked. Pastor, you must protect your family: first, from yourself, and second, from the church. In this post, we will look at the first, and then we will address the second in another post.

PROTECT THEM FROM YOURSELF

The temptation, given your position (especially as you first begin), is to force holiness (or moral conduct) on your family (wife and children) so that they conform to an outward pattern of spirituality. This mind-set is verbalized every time you remind them, “Remember your husband/dad is the pastor, so you must act like. . . .” Of course, sinful behavior is not to be tolerated, but that is true of your family members because they are Christians, not because they happen to be related to you, a pastor. True, there are activities and social settings that you, as a pastoral family, may not be a part of because of your position, but that’s not the point. What I am warning you against is pressuring them to put on a spiritual facade—a moralistic cover-up. It is amazing (and alarming) how easy it is to preach abounding grace from the pulpit but resort to only law in the home.

I can recall a comment by my daughter (who gave me permission to share this) when she was in sixth grade. We confronted her about her behavior and her lack of concern for doing her Scripture memorization. She said to us, “All I do is study the Bible.” I laughed, but then I thought about it. She attended Sunday school and the morning and evening worship services. She attended our Christian school during the week, which included attending a Bible class every day. On Wednesdays, she went to youth group, and at home we did devotions at dinner. The evening ended with Scripture memory and prayers at bedtime. She was right. She was most likely studying Scripture more often than anyone in the congregation, and yet I was angry because she didn’t memorize a verse that would show her teacher how spiritual she was.

If I’m honest, too often my desire was for my congregation (or her Christian school teachers) to think my four daughters were holy, not that my girls would actually possess genuine holiness. We must be careful to protect our children from our sinful motives.

There is no easy answer on how to balance this, particularly as it relates to your children. But over the last twenty-five years of ministry, I have learned that a pastor should never require or expect their children or wife to attend all the church programs. For many, this is a temptation when they first begin in pastoral ministry. It was for me. It is, however, not healthy. My children were expected to go to church. They didn’t have a choice but to participate in family devotions. However, although I wanted them to wake up every day desiring to go on every mission trip, join every Bible study, and attend every youth meeting, I did not require it.It is alarming how easy it is to preach abounding grace from the pulpit but resort to only law in the home.SHARE

When pastors do not require their families to attend every church activity, several things are accomplished.

First, it instills the importance and priority of the corporate worship service. Other group activities are good, and praying and studying the Word (and catechism) outside of Sunday is necessary (particularly together as a family), but what is most important for our kids to learn is that corporate worship is required by God and essential for spiritual growth. If you require your children to attend every church activity and trip, you can unwittingly communicate that every activity is of equal importance as long as what you are doing is “Christian.” Where you draw the line on which church activities are required of your family will be a decision you and your spouse will need to make. It may be that Sunday school and youth group are nonnegotiables. That is fine, but be careful with confusing them with the idea that the mature Christian is the one who attends the most church activities.

Second, not requiring your children to attend all church activities allows your children to take some ownership of their own spiritual lives. By the time a child reaches the age of 14 to 16 (each child is different), they need the freedom to make some important decisions, even spiritual decisions. They also need to experience the consequences of those decisions. I’m not speaking of letting them cross clear moral lines or allowing them to violate household rules. I’m talking about giving them an opportunity to learn to schedule their time wisely, balancing it between school, leisure, church activities, chores, etc.

This can be unnerving for any parent, and the pastor is no exception. In fact, it may be more daunting for the pastor because many in the church are looking at the pastor’s family with an eagle eye. However, if we do not allow our children any room to develop discernment and the ability to make wise choices, they will never grow up. I would rather they choose poorly while I am there to help direct their path than for them to choose poorly when they are off at college without a parental guide close at hand.

Third, not requiring your family to attend all church activities communicates that despite what people in the church might think if they decide not to attend youth group, their pastor/father/husband has not written them off as a child of the devil. My children’s (and wife’s) mental, emotional, and spiritual growth is more important to me than if someone in the church is upset that they failed to attend the ladies’ tea breakfast.

FinallyI think this decision not to require your spouse and children to attend every church activity benefits the family. It is unhealthy for any family, including the pastor’s family, to always be divided up—one going to adult study, another to youth group, one to the nursery, etc.—and never spend time together. If we are not careful, church activities can consume our lives, leaving little time for each other. This is my pet peeve with so many church programs; they sap so much time away from the family and from Christians just being Christians in the marketplace.

Dr. R. Kent Hughes explains:

The pastor’s busy schedule can take a toll on the family [imagine if you add to that your kids and wife attending all their respective events]. “Normal” people unwind on weekends; pastors are getting keyed up. For others, Christmas and Easter are relaxed family times; for us, they’re intense work periods. Since I cannot escape such liabilities, I’ve tried to balance them with one key asset of ministry: I can virtually schedule anything I want. The pastor’s schedule may be abnormal, but it’s also flexible.2

Use that flexibility to schedule quality and quantity time with your family. It doesn’t have to be a Bible conference or a mission trip (although that isn’t a bad idea); it just needs to be time for your family to know that although they do share you with the local body of Christ, ultimately you are their personal loving and caring shepherd. This will not only protect them “from you” and your schedule, but it will also protect them “from the church.” More on that in my next post.

Editor’s Note: This post was first published on May 14, 2018.

Editor’s Note: This post is part of a series on the pastor’s family. Next post.
 

  1. Alistair Begg and Derek J. Prime, On Being a Pastor: Understanding Our Calling and Work, rev. ed. (Chicago: Moody, 2013), 262. ↩︎
  2. Paul Cedar, Kent Hughes, and Ben Patterson, Mastering Ministry: Mastering the Pastoral Role (Colorado Springs, Colo.: Multnomah Books, 1993), 112–13. ↩︎

Dr. Drew DiNardo is pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Coral Springs in Coral Springs, Fla.

Covering topics including Church LeadershipContemporary Christianity, & Husbands and Fathers.

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