Sometimes it’s difficult to know how to influence our husbands well. Most wives know the very basic tenets, but we may not know what it takes to make a marriage thrive. I’ll be one to tell you that I’m not usually a fan of most marriage books out there (that’s a whole different topic for a different post). But I found a treasure in Loving Him Well by Gary Thomas and wanted to share with you some takeaways that will hopefully help you influence your husband better.
Pray positive prayers for your husband (pg. 90).
Gary Thomas says, “Find the five or six things he does really well…and try to wear God out by thinking him for giving you a husband with these qualities.” I started putting this in practice as soon as I read Loving Him Well and noticed a heart change within me when I did. Instead of thanking God for five or six qualities, I did three a day and changed up my list each day.
I dare any woman reading these words to try this practice each day.
Marriages die slow deaths from complacency all the time, but this discipline of thanking God for qualities of our husband is a curative balm to complacency.
Don’t be blinded to the blessings of your husband (pg. 69).
Loving Him Well delves into a problem area for most women. Dissatisfaction and complaining. Many of us ignore the positive traits of our husbands thinking of them as commonplace, but when one ugly flaw rises to the surface, we pounce on it!
Thomas mentions that he and his wife watched a special on widows whose husbands lost their lives in the World Trade Center. There was a jarring comment said from one widow, “The thing I can’t stand is when I hear wives complain about their husbands.”
All the women on the special agreed with another saying, “It would make my day if I walked into the master bathroom and saw the toilet seat left up.”
Did you hear that one? It would make this widow’s day to see the sight of the bane of every woman: an open toilet seat. Convicting much?
Don’t compare your husband’s flaws with the good of your friends spouses (pg. 73).
To piggyback off of the last point in Loving Him Well, many women along with complaining compare their husband to other friend’s husbands. Like…
Jean’s husband makes a good salary so that she can stay at home with her kids. I wish my husband was like Jean’s husband,
Alison’s husband cooks every dinner and washes the dishes. I wish my husband could be more like Alison’s.
The big problem with this comparing is that it omits what our husbands are good at. Every one of our friends’ husbands has flaws and comparing our husband’s flaws with the good and only the good of our friends’ husbands does our own spouse a huge disservice.
What does your husband offer that your friends’ husbands don’t? Jean’s husband may make a good salary, but maybe he doesn’t spend time in deep communication with her but yours does. Maybe Alison’s husband cooks dinner every night and washes the dishes after, but he doesn’t give his wife back rubs when she asks, yet yours does.
Look at your husband’s complimentary traits and don’t compare.
Guys rise to praise (pgs. 82-83).
Thomas explains that when someone compliments a guy, they want to retain that person’s opinion of them. And when a wife respects her husband, the praise makes him want to continue any of his good behavior and also to live up to the praise. On the flip-side, “negatively thinking about your husband increases your dissatisfaction with him and your marriage.”
Treat your husband the way you would want your daughter-in-law to treat your son (pg. 86).
And I will leave you with a convicting message from Loving Him Well. It’s easy to treat our husbands more harshly than we should. After all, we’re one in marriage, right? But we need to step outside of ourselves for a moment and think of how we would want our daughter-in-laws to treat our son. “That’s likely how your husband’s heavenly Father wants you to treat his wounded son.” I may not be mother to a son at this point, but this analogy from Gary Thomas still hit home.
Thomas also says, “It really does help if you look at your husband’s faults through the prism of his hurt- not to excuse him, but to plot a strategy for healing and then positive change.”
Love your husband well,
I generously received a review copy of this book from Zondervan. All thoughts are my own. All images are our own. Please don’t use without permission.
Great tips Sarah! Thanks! I love the one about not comparing our husband’s weaknesses to the strengths of another. How unfair! How much would we hate to have that done to us? Yet, I think it’s something most of us struggle with on some level. And I especially love the one about treating my husband the way I would want my daughter-in-law to treat my son! That really puts things in perspective! Thanks for the encouragement to stop and do a heart-check and re-align my actions to the will of my Heavenly Father.
Thanks for stopping by with your thoughts, Esther Hosea! Yes, I think the comparison trap is one that most of us women fall into and you’re right, it is very unfair! And yes, it is a very interesting perspective to think about treating our hubbies the way we would want our daughter-in-law to treat our son(s). Really makes ya think!
This books sounds like a worthwhile read. The point about not comparing our husband’s flaw with the good of a friends spouse really struck me. This is so easy to do and this statement really puts into perspective how silly and detrimental it is!
It is very easy to do, right? And you’re right, it is silly! Glad you gained some insights from the post that were from the book. Crystal. Thanks for dropping by!
Such good tips! I will put this book on my list.
So glad to hear you found it helpful, Heather! I think you would enjoy the book. Thanks for dropping by!
Soooo….this book is now HIGH on my “Books to Read” list. Sounds like a keeper and one many marriages will benefit from. I was especially drawn to finding 5 or 6 things that my husband does really well and wear God out with thanks. What a great idea. (And yeah…it’s so easy to pounce on 1 thing rather than praise for the many.) Thank you for sharing this, Sarah.
So glad this book is high on your list to read. I don’t think you’ll regret it, Kristi! And yes, zoning in on a few qualities about your husband to thank God for daily was one of my favorite insights from the book, but of course, there were many more great insights to pluck from the book.
Thanks so much for stopping by, Kristi!
Love this post!! I really love the idea of wearing God out thanking Him for your husbands qualities!! My husband has so many great qualities so it would definitely take some wearing out lol
“I really love the idea of wearing God out thanking Him for your husbands qualities!!”
Yes! I love that idea as well. So glad that your hubby has so many great qualities about him for you to thank God for daily. That’s so sweet of you to say. <3 Glad you liked the post, Diane. Thanks for dropping by. 🙂
Oh, there are so many good nuggets in here! I’m a newly-wed and already see how easily complacency & comparison can creep into marriage. I’ll have to put this on my to-read list :):)
So glad you found good takeaways, Sophie! And congrats on your new marriage– may you and your husband only continue to fall in love more as the years go by.