(Women of Prayer launched their first official day of prayer yesterday! Some started silently in their homes, some snuck in on the Facebook page to see what we were praying about, and others joined in the conversations in some form or another. Praying for our husbands, using Stormie’s book, began by praying for their wives! Yep, that’d be us. The prayer she leads us in at the end of chapter one is powerful, convicting, encouraging, heart changing, mind altering, and faith building. Getting to the place where you accept that you are not in charge of changing your husband – or anyone for that matter – is a big step for some. For all of us though, it should be a place of freedom. We are released from this responsibility – that is solely God’s – and can now fully spread our wings in the privilege of being for our men instead of against all that we deem as wrong in them. And since I’m on this journey to living free, this is an amazing grace to come into!
What has helped me most when praying for my husband, my children, my dad, my grandfathers, my uncles, and my in-laws is remembering who we are eternally to each other. If they are in Christ, then I am praying for my brothers in Christ. If they are not in Christ, then I am praying for them in the hopes that we become “family” in the eyes of eternity. Once again, so. much. FREEDOM! When I come to God in this perspective, I can put my relational-emotions aside for a moment and delve in prayer for them in a way that is truly selfless. It really is beautiful to abide in that quality of love for those moments with the Father on their behalf!)
Today, we stand for our men and their work. “…a man’s identity if often tied up in his work. He needs to be appreciated and he needs to win, and his work is often a means of seeing both happen.” Honestly, when I read this I thought of my boys first. They are definitely at an age where winning is very important! Two of my boys in particular want to win all the time! We are constantly talking to them about how to handle losing and winning in the best way. I also thought back to when Nathan and I were first married. We were both in college and working part-time jobs that were not our dream jobs, but when you’re newly married and in college you just find anything that’ll pay the bills! It wasn’t that hard for me because I knew it wasn’t what I would do forever and I enjoyed just working in some capacity. For Nathan, though, I saw him struggle to even want to go to work. Where the drive to get a solid paycheck was enough for me, it wasn’t for him. He wasn’t trying to be lazy, he just didn’t find any fulfillment in the work he was doing. This same characteristic is something I see everyday in my oldest son – you can imagine how some days might go in the homeschool world!
Recognizing this in our men and taking it to our Father and Creator can relieve any tension we may let build up. God created them for good works which He has prepared in advance for them to do. We need to be on their side all the time, and they need to know that we are! There will be times they just have to grit their teeth and do the work, but we can pray that their perspectives be that everything they are doing is for Christ. We also need to show appreciation and excitement over the work they do. This has been hard for me when the work my hubby (or my Lego-building boys) is doing isn’t what I had expected. There have been times when I have whined and complained because the life we were leading wasn’t what I had planned. In other words, their work wasn’t fulfilling me and my dreams and my purposes. (Gross-heart moment!) I read a quote by Amy Carmichael recently that said something like, “God never wastes His servants’ time.” It stopped me in my tracks as I thought about how ungrateful I have been at times for where He has placed us, with the work He has given us. I shake my head and seek forgiveness as I realize how many times I have made my men feel like what they were doing was a waste when they poured their whole selves into it! It may not have met my expectations, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t everything it was supposed to be. Wives, mommies, relatives, friends, let us above all else LOVE our men. “Love does not demand its own way” (1 Corinthians 13:5).
Prayer points for their Work from The Power of a Praying Wife:
-that they would see the fruit of all their labors
-that they would find great fulfillment in their work
-give them strength, faith, and a vision for their future to keep them from laziness
-keep them from fear, selfishness, or a desire to avoid responsibility
-keep them from becoming workaholics
-let them enjoy their successes without the need to strive for more
-that God would be Lord over all their work
-“Open up doors of opportunity for him that no man can close.” (Love this one!)
-development of his skills
-that he would have a wife (or sister-in-Christ in me) who encourages him
-that his work would be established, secure, successful, satisfying, and financially rewarding
-“May he never wither under pressure, but grow strong and prosper” (Psalm 1:3).