Watercolor by Robert Gilbert
Redundancy, including redundant encouragement, can be a most effective form of communication. It may be needed if your husband has been struggling with making ends meet, facing difficult times at work or struggling with a wayward child. God has placed the weight of responsibility squarely on a man's shoulders. Your encouragement honors his role, acknowledges his desire to achieve and expresses your trust in him.
When he feels like giving up, your outward expression of respect means more than ever. Finding the right words at that time is not always easy but, then again, the right Word may be as close as your knees.
Please allow me to share a personal and current struggle. My husband is facing a difficult time this next week. His hours will be cut from 40 per week to 8 hours per week. I am currently laid off and receiving unemployment checks.
I know that when he considers the future, he wavers between faith and fear. So do I. He encourages me and I encourage him. Some days we are both frightened together and all we can do is hold on to one another.
He prays. I pray. We pray together. And God answers. Some of the answers my husband hears are demonstrated by way of a compliment or sharing of cooking duties or the large pink rosebud in the red plastic drinking glass by my bed.
Some of the answers I receive I can share in these cards that I produce. Unfortunately, my husband cannot read due to his stroke. So, I ask him to come and sit beside me at the computer and I read the cards to him. This is the card (Insight) that I'm sharing with him tonight.
I pray that you can find the encouraging words you need for the times that challenge your husband.
Word from a Wife concerning last week's Word to the Wives -
I received a report from a wife who gave last Wednesday's featured card, Rough Ways, to her husband. She wanted to share his reaction. Her husband is not a believer and is struggling to hold on, having very nearly lost his business in the economic and political climate of the day. She gave him the card and, as he read it, tears filled his eyes. (He is not usually an emotional man.) He placed the card on his night stand, a place of honor. She knew that it would be moved to the drawer when something more important came along. But, not this time. This time he held it up and told her, "I'm taking this one to the office."
I appreciate her joyful report! It was very exciting for both of us!
I appreciate all the comments that many of you have been sharing. You have lifted my spirits at a time when I've needed it most. Friends are so helpful when times are trying. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me.