I can’t find the e-mail with the link, but somewhere I remember you bribing us with possible giveaways for asking for questions! I had been thinking about sending you this question anyway – I need some help! You might have to get Harold’s and Matthew’s view on this one!
My husband’s main love language is verbal affirmation and this is my least important one. I am having such a hard time encouraging him because I feel so fake when I do. My pastor’s wife tells Pastor “You’re all that and a bag of chips!” That is so fake to me, but is that what men want to hear?! For example, I complimented my hubby once by thanking him for being in charge of the finances and taking care of the budget. If it had been left to me, we’d be in thousands of dollars of credit card debt. A few weeks later one of my friends was having some money issues, so I thanked him again. He said “You already said that.” LOL! I wanted to be sincere; maybe he just wants blatant flattery?
I pray that the Lord encourage him, and I do tell him he’s a good husband and daddy, but I know there must be more I need to do.
What a fabulous question! Yes, I will gladly dig into this one. AND…I have a wonderful freebie for you–stick with me to the end and I will tell you about that. I think it is perfect to help you with your question. But, I have an answer first! 🙂 Fun, huh?
Danielle, I did ask Harold what his thoughts were. We had a fabulous conversation about this. Thanks for triggering a wonderful discussion. I feel like I know my husband better from this! AWESOME! THANKS!
First, Danielle, I remember when we first got married and I went to my first marriage retreat. The speaker taught a wonderful workshop that literally changed my life. The only problem was that I left there very, very confused. I was so overwhelmed. I felt like I really did not know Harold or even myself for that matter. It seemed like Harold and I were just not TYPICAL. I thought something was very, very wrong with me AND Harold. It scared me out of my mind. 😀
We had all AND none of the qualities that I thought we each had. It is kinda funny looking back. As I look at what we tested out to be during that retreat, we are NOTHING like that now. We joke that you just cannot put either of us in a category. We are just not people who fit into a box. We bust down the box. We bust down the walls. We both require major STUDY by the other–LOL!
Why do I tell you this?
Well, I love the fun books that help you to get to know your spouse and your children. They are super. I think that the book that you are talking about is a super book. It is fun to get fresh ideas for how to bless, romance, and minister to your sweetheart.
The downside? Well, I think that the downside is fully illustrated by your question. You are feeling like you are missing it. You feel like you are not doing a good job meeting your husband’s needs. Things feel artificial, hard, and downright impossible.
So, is it you? Is it the book? Is it this man you married??? 🙂
Sweet friend, I love this question because it opens the door for me to tell you how wonderfully you and your sweetheart are made. You are soooo individual that you cannot fit your personalities, needs, or gifts into a box. You are the ONLY YOU.
Even better news…
Your husband is just HIMSELF. He has his own personalities, needs, and gifts. You cannot put those in a box. You cannot put those in a list. In fact, he is sooo unique that he cannot be fit into a book. 🙂
Where am I going with this?
I love books. I have written over 100 of my own books. Yet, the only book throughout history that can give you an understanding of your sweet spouse and how you can fulfill his needs and minister to his heart is the Word of God–the Master Designer’s blueprint for your husband and your marriage. God alone can help us to learn how to romance our man. God alone can help us to really get to know what makes them tick. God alone can help us to understand what their real needs are and how we fulfill those needs.
Want to know the funniest thing? Well, to me the funniest thing is that you don’t ever arrive. Don’t get scared. Consider your love affair with your husband to be a journey. You will learn new things about him around every bend. Harold and I get up every day knowing so much about each other, yet awakening to the most interesting person we will ever get to know. Marriage is like that. You are on a journey getting to KNOW, REALLY KNOW your best friend. There is always soooo much more to know about them. That is the beauty of intimacy, real God-designed intimacy. Daily, you can peel through yet another layer to learn something neat and new about the person you love the most. If we ever stop learning things about them, that is where we are in danger of crashing and burning. Of course, the only place you can learn from them is studying THEM. Become your sweetie’s number one pupil for life. 🙂
I am not saying to ditch the book. But, I want to encourage your heart. Sweet friend, you are PERFECT for your husband. There are a few things that Scripture tells us that we really have to get a strong hold of. These will help you as you learn from ANY book, even mine. These will help you to grow more and more intimate with your husband. Ready? 😉
Things You Need To Know…
1. Know that you are PERFECT for your husband!
God designed YOU perfectly for your spouse. Soak that in for a moment!
YOU are perfect for your husband. You are absolutely PERFECT for him!
You have inside of you everything that you need for God to bless and meet those “needs” that you have read about.
Your husband was attracted to you above and beyond all other women. In fact, YOU were attracted to your husband above and beyond all other men. You probably did not think about how you were meeting his needs. You just did it. It was WHO YOU ARE.
Sweet friend, if you were completely left alone to learn only from God and your husband, you could write a book on how to meet a man’s needs. It would be different than the one that I would write or that even this author has written. Is something wrong with all of us? No. We all meet our spouse’s needs specifically in a way that no one else can meet them. Gives a bit of job security, huh?
My husband has a package of needs and a specific way that he wants them met. They are constantly growing and changing. In fact, through the years they have looked very, very different. His needs years ago are not the same as his needs today. They can be similar, but definitely different. No one else is designed to have that “ebb and flow” with my husband that I have. I am the one created to be his help-meet. And, it goes both ways–he is so perfect for me. I love the expression from Rocky that is SO descriptive of Harold, he “fills my gaps.” We are just perfect for one another. We have such kindred views and passions. We are paced so similarly. We have the same heartbeats that no one else could GET. Just too awesome! God designs marriage to be that way.
It cracks me up. I have read many, many books through the years. They used to frustrate me. Some guy would write about the needs of a man. They were SO HIS NEEDS. They missed it with my husband. Even some are soooo opinionated about the role of the wife. I used to try to follow their counsel so I could be the “perfect wife” and “keeper of my home” and yet Harold totally saw things different. He wanted for me to be ME. That meant–that I dress for him…my commitments are what HE wants for me to be a part of…on and on. He is not threatened by a strong woman. Instead, he is allured by strength. He wants to see me succeed and step up to the call to do all that God wants for me to do. For some men, that would include keeping the perfect house or preparing meals from scratch. For Harold, that means that he would prefer to see me minister in another book and order take-out. That is why we are the perfect spouse for each other. Looking at how others do it can bring condemnation and frustration. God wants for us to fulfill our own spouse. We are perfect for that! 🙂
2. Know that you have inside of you everything that you need to come alongside of him as his completer and very best friend for life.
It is there!
Sweet friend, you don’t have to put on something that is just NOT YOU. Your husband needs YOU. The book may have missed his love language. You already “speak” that love language the way that you are. JUST ASK HIM. Ask him what makes him really feel close to you. Ask him what makes him feel respected, honored, cherished, and fulfilled. Ask him what blesses him. One other thing, ask him what makes him feel like you don’t care or like he is an inconvenience. Study how he responds best. Open up the communication lines to really HEAR him. Commit to do the things that deposit into his “love-bank” each day. Then, you will grow more and more intimate each and every day.
My husband and I are both closest when the other comes alongside and does what the other cannot do alone. It is neat when we look at our strengths and weaknesses. I am weak where Harold is strong and I am strong where Harold is weak. When we do what we do best, there is a beauty to our relationship. I KNOW that no one else can take care of me like Harold. He knows that no one else can take care of him like me. We are each other’s best friend.
Danielle, what are your strengths? I almost promise, without even knowing you or him that well, that your strengths are in areas where he needs you to come alongside of him and complete him. What about your weaknesses? Are they glaring in areas where he can come alongside of you as your knight-in-shining-armor? Beloved, that is how God designed for you to be. You have everything inside of you that he needs!
3. Know that you can be YOU and that is exactly what your husband needs the most.
Just ask him. I am sure that he LOVES that you are so real and genuine. I am sure that he is encouraged by what you say because he knows that you speak truthfully without fluff and without any superficiality about you. Don’t for one more moment think that you are not meeting his needs because you can’t be someone else. 🙂
If you really believe that he needs encouragement and needs it verbally, then just ask God to help you to have the words that really communicate your love, satisfaction, and appreciation of him. It might be through simply saying “THANKS” when he does the little or big things for you. It might be silent, but a big hug when he helps you. It might be making his favorite snack or meal when he is working hard and needs to know that you notice his sacrifice and hard work. Do you know what I mean?
Danielle, this is not getting out the pom-poms and mega-phones to be a bubbly cheerleader. You already cheer him on as you inspire him along the way. Just notice how you do it already and BE YOURSELF!
Notice a thread?
Sweet friend, YOU are perfect! You are the one who God designed perfectly for your spouse. Just BE YOURSELF. He can then be all God designed for him to be. And, in the meantime, your love story will be written to the glory of God. It is going to be sweet, beloved!
Now…for your freebie! 🙂
I want to bless you with the seminar set from our ROMANCE TOOLBOX. Those audios go where I am leaving off. Dig in. Enjoy! AND…let’s chat later about what God keeps doing. Deal?
I love you dearie!
May God bless you, your sweet husband, and your amazing family lavishly!
With much love,