Encouraging Your Husband When He Feels Like a Ministry Failure

You, as a ministry wife, have an ability to be able to get in behind the scenes and see the real man your husband is and hear his heart in his lowest of times. All of them face times in which they feel like they are a ministry failure.

You and God can make a difference in helping your husband see he is NOT a failure just because times are hard or there is opposition. This is a list that I found that I had written for my husband when he was disheartened over a year ago and thought it might be something worth sharing. When your husband feels like a failure then please encourage him in a special way – share this blog post, or write your own list, or do some of the other things the other ladies suggested below.

Encouraging Your Husband - TMM

This is what I wrote:

5 Reasons Why You Are Not a Ministry Failure

1. Your calling is fulfilled by obedience, not numbers.

2. So much of ministry is not about being busy, but loving God’s people. You have a unique ability to love people and make them feel cared for.

3. Your lows give you humility and a launching pad for future goals – they do not define you, your ministries, or your God.

4. God is not finished with you yet. God won’t be done with you and your duty to follow Him (your ministries) until you see His face.

5. God’s Word accomplishes His purposes – Sown into the hearts of people through the songs the choir sings, your preaching or teaching, or the children’s ministries you have worked in. Make it your responsibility to keep sowing, not weight yourself down with making it grow. God gives the increase.

Encourage yourself in the Lord.

“The Lord shall increase you more and more, you and your children. Ye are blessed of the Lord which made heaven and earth.” Psalm 115:14,15

Love,

Your Girl


 

To expand this thought this question was asked on the Ministry Mamas Facebook page:

If your husband were discouraged today and felt like a failure and you were going to give him a reason why he was NOT a failure, what would that reason be?

This is what some of you had to say:

“He’s doing his best to faithfully follow the path that God has placed before him with the knowledge and experience that God has given him so far, and that’s the best thing that he can do.

He has me who is head over heels in love with him as a person not a title, and four healthy happy adjusted children that adore him! …followed by some spontaneous planned affection.”

When you truly live for God, no one is a failure. Yes we miss the mark but we are never failures in Christ.

God alone is the author & finisher of our faith. He sees the beginning, the ending, and everything in between. We have to focus on the Master of all our circumstances, whether it’s in good times or bad. He works all things together for our good – even when it doesn’t feel like it. We’ve been down this road several times and it’s not ever easy, but in the end…always good.

I do believe this is a tool the devil uses to get to our men serving in the ministry. I have had to deal with this a few times in our marriage and these are some things I did to encourage my man: Pray, listen when he wants to talk, be silent when words will only sound like nagging, be there (women are not the only ones who need held sometimes), love him, tell him you love him, show him you love him, write little notes and leave them in places only he will find (underwear/sock drawer, suit coat pocket, wallet, etc.). Knowing you are there at his side through anything will help him get through anything. If he doesn’t ‘thank you’ or acknowledge your acts of encouragement, keep it up he will in time. God might be using this time to not only make him stronger, but you both stronger in faith and your marriage and love for each other.

I always think about when David was in such despair after his wife, children and fellow townspeople were taken captive and the people wanted to kill him and he wanted to die. The Bible says he encouraged himself in the Lord. One of the best things for our husbands is to sit together and talk about all the things the Lord has accomplished through them, remember the good times, the lives changed, the blessings He has given us. Just naming the blessings of the current day can help lift the spirits even a little.

I read this out loud to my mom and my six-year-old piped up ‘Only Satan wants you to believe you’re a failure but God made you special,’ I think that pretty much sums it up.”

These ladies have good comments and I love to get other perspectives from ladies who have served for different lengths of time in ministry.  For yourself, allow the Holy Spirit to guide you when you have the discernment to see that your husband really needs encouragement. Make sure that you’re sensitive to his sensitivities (in words, things you do, and etc.) and as the Lord leads you, encourage him to keep serving the Lord.

If you have some other ideas, thoughts, or advice on how to encourage your husband when he feels like a failure please leave them in the comments!

 

Hunting for a Good Marriage – Wedding Shower Devotion

Hunting for a Good Marriage

This was written for a ministry friend that is planning on hosting a hunting themed wedding shower for a young lady in her church who shares the love of hunting with her future husband. I love the idea of incorporating the bride’s interests into the shower with pink and camouflage decorations.

Hunting is its own hobby and sport. It takes a large amount of self-discipline as well as training in how to go through with killing the animal you’re hunting. Let’s think of just a few things that are required when you go hunting.

  • You have to have the right hiding place(s) – The Bible says that when you get married you are to leave your father and mother and cleave to your husband (Genesis 3). You should be hiding in a place where you are cleaving and close to your husband. Another place to hide is in the shadow of the Almighty, especially in times of trouble. – Psalm 91:1 “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.”
  • Your hunting gear (clothes) – This is very important to keep yourself hidden and warm while you wait for your opportunity to make a shot. The wife’s proper clothing is found in I Peter 3:4,5 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands:” This is not a popular set of clothing to wear because as these verses say, it comes at a great price. The cost is our words and how hard it is sometimes to put on a meek and quiet spirit! But when we do, it shows we trust God to take care of things in our marriage.
  • The right weapon – As a good clean gun is important to a hunter’s outing, the weapon of a good wife will be the same weapon as a good Christian, which is the Sword of the Lord, the Bible. The Word of God will help you defeat the enemy as he attempts to attack you as you seek to honor God with your marriage. The Sword will also teach you how to correct your own heart and ways (Hebrews 4:12).
  • The right sight – Not only is a good gun the most important piece on a hunting adventure, but you should have a good sight on your gun so that you can look through it and see the animal that you are planning on killing. There are other sights you should keep your eye on as you walk through marriage together with your husband.
    • Keep you sights on: The Lord, your husband, and your family.
    • Watch for the enemies – the wicked woman, laziness, distractions and/or relational substitutes
  • Take safety precautions – Just like when you are hunting and you typically wear hunter’s orange as a safety precaution to keep other hunters from shooting you, you should take precautions in your marriage. The most important thing to guard your heart against is hardness of heart because it is the cause of divorce (Matthew 19:4-8). Protect yourself against bitterness by forgiving and not going to bed angry (Ephesians 4:26). Practice doing good to your husband even when you do not feel like it because the virtuous woman gives us this example in Proverbs 31:12, She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.

God and His Word will help you to be the best wife and hunter that He wants you to be. He is the best at watching out for us and helping us in our marriage. I pray and hope that the Lord will be always in your sight that you can walk with your husband for as many years as the Lord will allow you together.

Click on Hunting for a Good Marriage printable pdf. version.

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10 Years of Marriage & Learning

10 Years of Marriage and Learning 2

A Special Thanks…

Today I want to extend my sincere love and thanks to my most faithful encourager and my darling husband for ten years of marriage. My husband, who I like to call on the blog, The Ministry Papa, is a special person to have put up with me for so long.

My husband is a wonderful person. I admire him for loving others and always making them feel welcome and valued. I love him for always saying to me when I approach him asking for forgiveness, “I already forgave you,”because he has tenderly already chosen to overlook my wrongs. I love how he tells me that if I die then he will never want to marry again, even though I encourage him it would be okay. He really needs a helpmeet! Trust me, I know.

I love how when I am not self-confident he has uplifting words to say to help me feel secure. He is an assuring friend, an adventure waiting to happen, sometimes a magnet for bodily injury but that’s something that keeps us laughing. He is concerned about our life and future, wants to follow and obey God so that we do not have more years of heartache if we can help it.

He is the fun-loving father that delights to wrestle on the floor with our kids and take them to do things with him. He is careful in the things that he is good at, like painting, preaching, and the joyful way he leads the song service in our church. I love the sparkle in his eyes when he sees me. He is my dear, my darling one!

On a Side Note…Did you know that darling means, “my only, as not to be replaced”? It does, and that is why I call him that.

Time…

10 years is:

  • 3,652 days,

  • 87,648 hours,

  • 5,258,800 minutes,

  • 315,532,800 seconds

We have not been exactly in the same place for each of those days, hours, minutes, or seconds, (thankfully) but we have been considered “one flesh” for that long. It is a sobering thought to think of all those times shared add up to so great an amount of time.

Half of our marriage was spent as some of the most stressful years of my life as we lived our earlier days working, having our boys and finishing Bible College. The last half have been spent serving in our first ministry together and they have allowed us to have a “normal” schedule and be able to communicate so much better than the years beforehand.

You can read more about our earlier years of marriage on a guest post that I wrote here.

Love…

Love is an interesting thing. I cannot express any thoughts or ideas that are new in the world about the subject but I am thankful that I have it and through God our love is richer and deeper. In serving in the calling of God’s will for our lives it has made it at times more complicated but overall more meaningful because I believe that it will have resulted in eternal gain for God’s glory. Heaven will show something of the love we had as we served the Lord together in our church, gave money for worldwide missions together, and most importantly taught our children about salvation side by side.

Learning…

You may notice that I write more often about ministry and motherhood than I do about marriage. In so many ways I feel like I struggle in this area of my life most, so that is why I titled this “10 Years of Marriage and Learning.” We are still learning how to love and serve each other. Lord willing, we will always be learning to love and serve each other.

Someone said in a sermon once that marriage makes you learn how to be more like Christ… and I think it makes it clear when you’re not being Christlike at all.

Marriage has stretched me, humbled me, called me to forgive more times than my fleshly heart wanted to. It has taught me forbearance, patience, to keep my yap shut and wait for God to work in my husband’s heart instead of trying to constantly be the pushing force of change in my husband’s life. It has revealed that although I have a wonderful companion, that God is the One who really knows my thoughts and feelings every day and He is the one that will help me change MY heart more than his to help make this marriage what He wants it to be. Being married to my husband has made me a better person.

I won’t lie, neither of us has been a picture perfect example of a wife or husband every day of these 10 years, but I Iove how that no matter what God has helped us moment by moment get through the turbulent seas and teaches us each time that true love covers a multitude of sins.

I Peter 4:8 And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.

To My Husband…

I love you more today than I did when we got married, it sounds so cliché but it’s true. I pray that the Lord will help us to be the best parents that our children deserve, special lovers, and obedient servants to Him for the rest of our lives! I love you, my cornier than cornbread, cheesier that Giovani’s cheese bread, mocha-latte’, one in a million babe! I hope you know that. ~Your Girl