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Letting Him Protect (Part 2)

We’ve discussed What is Man in his roles of king, warrior, teacher and friend.1

We’ve shown how society seeks to destroy manhood in Where are the Men?

We’ve presented principles to stand against society and show God’s way as truth in What Should a Man Do?.

Last week’s article asked What Is Your Choice?. We considered how a woman can help her husband in his role as king.

This week’s article asks: What should a woman do? How can she change society to accept her man as God intended? In order to answer that question, she must operate in her God-given role. As both man and woman obey God, they become a testimony to what God intended for every couple. This shows society a better way.  In this article, woman’s role as help-meet to her husband's roles of warrior and teacher will be presented.

Do you know the protection of standing behind your man? He is there to protect you.

He is king. He is a warrior. He confronts evil, stands his ground, holds his own.

How do we submit to his role as warrior?

I remember when we had several young children. A lady from the church told me that all the ladies in the church took turns cleaning the church kitchen. I told her that I would ask my husband if I could take a turn. He told her that I couldn’t do the job. He gave no excuses. (Why do we as women feel we must explain?) He offered no reasons. I agonized over her feelings when I couldn’t do the job, but he had no problem telling her that I took care of his needs and the needs of his family first.

I could have cleaned the kitchen without his knowledge, but he was protecting me. The deception would insult his protection and his trust. He is my warrior. He protects me from overextending myself and committing to too much. He reminds me what I should be doing—taking care of him and the children.  Some say that is confining and bigotry--I would say that is liberating and freeing. I don’t have to say “no” to all the causes that bombard my home and demand my attention. He does.  He doesn’t keep me inside my house and prohibit me from experiencing the world…He protects me from the pull of the world and what it will do to our family.

A husband is not looking for ways to control his wife. He desires respect. The more respect he is given, the more honor he bestows on his wife. Wives have more power to change their marriage than they know. (p. 56)2

When he comes home from a day at work fighting temptations and the world’s influence, does he find a haven with peace? Or does the war rage stronger at home than what the world throws at him? Are you hindering your husband’s ability to fight against the world by your darts, criticism, and picking? All warriors must rest some time. Can he at home?

 “A wise woman builds her house, but the foolish tears it down with her own hands.” Proverbs 14:13

Eggerichs challenged women with the respect test. Women listed reasons they respected their husbands. When their husbands weren’t busy, the wives were to tell them, “I just want you to know that I respect you.” They weren’t to wait for any response, just leave the room. (p. 186)2 Try it. Your warrior will conquer the world for you.

After WWII American life changed. Middle class families migrated from cities to suburbs. Home designs in the 1950’s exchanged the many smaller rooms of the Victorian homes for fewer, larger rooms creating open space where families could congregate.

With suddenly no room to call their own, men were forced to uninhabitable parts of the home. Garages, attics and basements quickly became the designated space for men, while the women and children controlled the rest of the house. (p. 113)4 What happened to the man as king of his home?

A wounded animal retreats to its cave. Now America’s men are doing the same thing in their ‘man caves.’ 

In an article Why He Needs a Man Cave, the author allowed her husband his ‘man cave.’ Her husband, who paid for at least half the house, is treated like some teenager that must be supervised. She lists rules for women constructing their man’s cave. “After you allow him a place, let him decorate it…Don’t worry... Guys like caves and can do with minimal stuff. We aren’t going to build a man cave this year, but I am going to help make ‘his space’ at our home more comfortable. He wants a new desk for his computer. He chose one that didn’t match the décor, but it is his man cave within our home.” (p. 117)4

“Wow,” says Dr. Helen Smith, “A whole desk in the house that a guy got to pick out, how egalitarian… Now men have no place to turn except the boob tube down in the basement, where they watch themselves being characterized as perverts, predators, and goofballs. Add to that some Cheetos and a bunch of beer to kill the pain, and inertia sets in.” (p. 118)4

What happened to the phrase 'man’s home is his castle'? Now if he is lucky, he has a desk or a garage.

A ninety-year-old man was dying. All his adult children gathered around his bed “I smell apple strudel baking. Mary, ask your mother for some strudel.” Mary returned without dessert. “Mom said you can’t have any. It’s for after your funeral.” Respect your man till the end. Guard against slowly taking over. (p. 213)2

What does your man have left to protect?

He is king. He is warrior. He is teacher. What of that tender part of him that yearns to leave a mark on the future by what he has built today? He wants his children to be prepared for what the future will bring.

Women process by talking. Men do not. When we discuss issues, we resolve them out loud. You desire someone to listen. Your husband ‘fixes’ your complaints. Ask him to listen, not to solve your problems. But also recognize when he says, “I got it,” that you do not have to continue to explain. He ‘gets it,’ stop talking. “…the contentions of a wife are a constant dripping.” Proverbs 19:13

Many times man feels the wife is challenging his ideas to control when she confronts his ideas to connect.

A comic strip on my refrigerator shows the mother, looking out the window, watching her husband and her son play catch. The father asks the son, “Everything all right?” The son responds, “Yep.” That was all they said. When they return inside, the mother asks, “Did you talk with Jeremy? Is he all right?” Her husband answers, “Yes”, and he is.

Do not interfere in husband-son talks. Do not soften the disciple when your husband corrects him. Your son may need the stern rebuke. Your interference causes disrespect toward your husband and your son. (I found it helpful during those times to take a shower.) Your husband is helping him be a man.

Does your husband wrestle with the kids? Do you interject, caution and protect? Do you think that your husband would intentionally hurt the children? Can I watch them wrestle? Absolutely not. If I cannot watch, it is for me to leave, not for them to stop. I listen to them laugh from another room (or take another shower).

They need their father to interact with them, whether it be challenging their physical strength or stirring their minds and hearts. My husband prepares them to be men. Do I know how to be a man?

When I found the boys jumping off the well house with fake parachutes on their backs, after their father returned from jumping out of planes, I asked my husband---“Is this something they should be doing?” When I watched from the window as my son flew over a ramp built for his dirt bike, I wondered, “Is this safe?” When I saw my son riding a cow in the pasture, I asked, “Will he be fine?” My husband reassures me that they need to do these things. I must let go and allow them challenges for their manhood.

When it was time for my first son to leave for college, my husband reminded me that was what we trained him to do. He was to be a man. (To read more on this ‘letting go’ see Take Wings and Fly, 2013.) 

A good teacher knows when to let go. They have learned what they could from us. My husband reminds me why we do what we do. He keeps my focus on the bigger picture. (To read an analogy of how your husband sees the world, see Buffaloes and Butterflies.) Thank your husband for his influence.

Every boy needs a leader.  Every girl needs a champion.

My husband is my king, he is my warrior, he is my teacher.

Am I following his leading? Am I allowing him to protect? Am I willing to listen and to learn under his teaching? This is God’s way. This is where blessing is found. I have found blessing. Is it easy? Is letting go of control ever easy? But is it best? I have found it so.

1Weber, Stu. Tender Warrior: God’s Intention for a Man. Multnomah Books, 1993.

2Eggerichs, Emerson. Love and Respect: The Love She Most Desires, The Respect He Desperately Needs. Colorado Springs, CO: Thomas Nelson, 2004.

3All Scriptures are New American Standard Bible. The text of the New American Standard Bible may be quoted and/or reprinted up to and inclusive of five hundred (500) verses without express written permission of The Lockman Foundation, providing the verses do not amount to a complete book of the Bible nor do the verses quoted account for more than 25% of the total work in which they are quoted.

4Smith, Helen, PH.D. Men on Strike: Why Men are Boycotting Marriage, Fatherhood, and the American Dream--and Why It Matters. NY: Encounter Books, 2013.

 



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Author of Biblical fiction, married to my best friend, and challenged by eight sons’ growing pains as I write about what matters.

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