My favorite month of the year is here - Father's Day month! So, in the spirit of Father's Day month, I have asked my bride, Linda to share five more ways wives can encourage husbands on the journey of becoming faithful fathers.
- Schedules were referenced earlier – making sure dad and mom are operating off the same calendar. Another way to encourage your husband is to help him identify and schedule one-on-one time with each child routinely. It might be a dad-daughter date, a weekend retreat or extended summer hiking trip. This takes intentionality, and we moms may even have to run interference with the other kids guaranteeing each will have their special one-on-one time with Dad. Do what you can to encourage strong and maturing father-child relationships;
- Show respect. This is a tough one these days with media portraying fathers in such a negative light. Encourage your husband by showing respect in front of the kids and keeping any sarcasm in check. Even an eye-roll can show disrespect if the kids see it. Know that kids will catch what Mom practices;
- One area to be respected is the family’s financial well-being. Show respect for each other by talking often about income and outflow to make sure you are living within your means. One model we suggest is for the 1st 10% of income to go to the church; the 2nd 10% to savings; and the balance to cover taxes and living expenses. This requires discipline and delayed gratification, both very important lessons to expose the kids to;
- Pick right battles. Rick grew up in quite a different home environment than I did and used to see every confrontation as a battle that must be won. We have had many conversations around the importance of ‘picking your battles’. I encourage him by discreetly signaling for a ‘time-out’ if I see a wrong battle brewing;
- Making our home ‘our home’ instead of the ones we were raised in, was encouraging for both of us. To keep all in perspective, sometimes we had to take a step back and ask, “Is this really going to make a difference in five years?” or “Is this becoming an ego issue behind a decision that had already been made?” After taking a step back, discussions rarely escalated. Keeping proper perspective and communication lines open will encourage your husband to be a faithful father.
Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the Church and gave Himself up for her … and the wife must respect the husband. – Ephesians 5:25 & 33. On father-daughter retreats and hiking trips, I always encourage dads to bless their daughters. A few years ago, one dad prayed, “Lord, bless my daughter with a husband that will love her even when she might not be all that loveable. And teach her to respect her husband even when he might not be all that respectable.” This level of relationship takes a lifetime to nurture. Encourage each other with patience, love and respect.
Prayer guide: Lord, thank You for Your patience with me and love for me. Thank You for the woman you brought into my life and the marriage & family You have blessed me with. May I never take these blessings for granted. Help me step up in my marriage relationship and embrace encouragement from my wife on this journey of becoming a faithful father - the dad You call me to be and the dad my family needs. Amen.
A faithful father nurtures a maturing relationship with Christ, his wife and kids.