Monday, May 25, 2009

Marriage Monday "Appeal or Nagging"

I’ve written a post before on the tone of our words, so I won’t revisit that. Of course, tone matters! Today I would like to focus on making an appeal to our husband verses nagging.

It is better to dwell in a desert land than with a contentious woman and with vexation. (Pr. 21:19) (see also Pr. 25:24)

I read awhile ago that if a woman mentions something twice to her husband it is probably nagging. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying we can’t remind or encourage them, you know what I mean. The Holy Spirit is faithful to point this out to us.

We don’t need to take the place of the Holy Spirit. He is far more effective than our nagging will ever be. There have been things in our marriage I just ‘knew’ should be a certain way and I was not afraid to make it known. Do you know, some of those things still haven’t changed? I believe a huge part of the reason why is because of my nagging.

Contrast that to some of the things I just mentioned once or twice and then submitted it to the the Lord. Those things seem to come about much quicker, if they were God’s will in the first place! Many things I now see were not God’s will, but my own, and I am so thankful for God’s mercy in keeping my husband from doing what I was so sure was right!

A verse I LOVE is Proverbs 21:1;

THE KING'S heart is in the hand of the Lord, as are the watercourses; He turns it whichever way He wills.

Our husbands' hearts are in the Lord’s hands. He moves their hearts in the way they should go, not us, and certainly not our ‘many words’! (See Proverbs 27:15-17 for further study)

A word fitly spoken and in due season is like apples of gold in settings of silver. (Proverbs 25:11)

There are times when we do need to bring something up to our husband. We would be wise to learn how to make an appeal in a Godly and honoring way. I love how Martha Peace explains it. (If you don’t have her book ‘The Excellent Wife’, I highly recommend it)

The following are suggestions from “The Excellent Wife” by Martha Peace.

*An appeal should be done for the purpose of achieving the husband’s objective or desire.

*The motive of the wife must not be manipulative.

*The appeal should be made in a respectful manner and with a spirit of humility.
*The appeal should be made at the proper time.

*The appeal should be made only once.

*The wife should always preface or conclude an appeal with a statement that she is willing to do whatever her husband decides. (as long as it is not sin)

I loves this quote from her book: “When a husband does not listen to or grant his wife’s appeal, she must accept his decision as the will of God for her at that moment.” All of these suggestions can be found in Chapter 14.

Do you find yourself nagging instead of trusting God to bring the changes in your husband? What ways will you seek to change this?

Have you read “The Excellent Wife”? Did you like it?

Heavenly Father, we desire to honor You with our words. Please show us when we have begun to nag. Show us our hearts. Expose the lack of trust in You when we push our own agenda. Give us grace to trust You more and leave our wonderful husbands in Your faithful and capable hands.


HSingMama said...

Thanks for the reminder to not "nag". Instead to trust in God for the changes that He wants to make. I have battled with this of late. I have read "The Excellant Wife" but its been so long ago...I think I should pull it out and reread it. :o)

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Terry @ Breathing Grace said...

Good thoughts, Michelle.

Thanks for sharing.

Tina said...

Excellent post - thank you. I need the reminder (again and again it seems!) :) I resolve to leave an issue alone leaving it in God's hands after expressing my concerns or desires to my sweet husband (knowing that God used pagan kings in the old testament - He can certainly move my husband if He wills) - yet, a day or two pass and I get this tremendous urge to remind him (my husband) again of my concerns/desires in a certain area. The whole time I'm prefacing it with, "I'm really trying not to nag" (which I truly don't mean to), but I also have this conviction in my heart that I need to lay off and allow to God to work if He wills (and accept it if He doesn't - that's so hard!)
Thanks again for this timely reminder.
In His love,

Amanda Sikes said...

I have read her book several times and I love, love, LOVE it! Thank you for the reminder of such an important issue in a woman's life.
I have seen God work throughthis process in my life so many times. He does answer prayer and change minds and hearts when we are seeking Him and waiting on His timing.

Mrs. Teapot said...

Dear Michelle,

Hi, this is my first time on your blog. I found you because Mary at Cybilla's Cafe left a comment on my blog. Upon visiting her blog I found yours.

Thank you for sharing this post. The Lord is so merciful because it has come to me in a timely manner. I needed to hear or rather read what you have written. Thank you also for the prayer... this is the desire of my heart.

May the Lord richly bless you with wisdom and grace. What a beautiful family He has given to you.

-Mrs. Teapot

Anonymous said...

You know, something my husband said to a friend of mine who was in need of coucil regarding approaching her husband with a tough subject...

When Esther came to her husband with an important issue, she dressed herself up, made him a wonderful meal, served him and showed him her respect. She took TIME to win her husband's heart before bringing her important issue before him. So often, we (myself included) jump right in to talk to our husbands without ever waiting for the right time.

I thought that was wonderful advice that my husabnd gave... some that I need to follow more often!