Wives, you can’t change your husband. But you can influence him.
Gary Thomas looks at the powerful God-given influence a woman has in life of her husband and how she can use it to strengthen his heart.
“The best way is to make marriage an adventure we walk with God. Loving your husband doesn’t mean God wants you to become a doormat that gets abused and mistreated. I’ve found that [wives] will allow [abusive] things to go on, thinking, ‘This is what it means to be unselfish.’ The truth is that when you are mistreated, God weeps.”
Gary says that women can influence their husbands but first they need to start with their identity in Christ.
What doesn’t work?
• The common suggestion “Don’t go to bed angry.” Men sometimes need far more processing time than their wives – trying to solve a conflict immediately might make the conflict worse. Try to sleep on it and revisit when your husband has had time to sort through his emotions.
• Nagging. Irritation and desperation will create resentment and distance instead of heart transformation.
What works? Gary names some characteristics of women that can lead even the most hardened of men to examine their hearts and characters:
• Gentle questions instead of harsh critiques.
• Respect and affirmation for what he’s doing.
• Strength and confidence in Jesus to love you rather than seeking the love of your husband.
Finally, a woman who is marked by faith, peace, and love can influence her home. “Ultimately it’s also a woman of power and joy. A woman of power because she’s learned to surrender her heart to the Holy Spirit… There is [also] no joy that rivals a woman who believes she’s doing what God’s created her to do. There’s a sense of purpose and happiness.”
Key Scriptures: 1 Peter 1:21