My husbands love language is words of affirmation. Which means, what I do say matters, and what I don't say also matters.
For someone who throws around words in an emotional state, this can be pretty toxic and unproductive. I may or may not be known to say extreme words like "never" and "always" even if, in fact, it's just been a few times. That's just me vacillating, but that's a whole other book I need to tell you about.
What I wanted to share today is about a little truth God dropped in my heart a few weeks ago when I pulled up in my driveway. I guess it's taken me over 30 days to get from my head to the keyboard--- but I suppose for every non-blog-post written was a sink of dishes washed or a stack of homeschool papers finished. I could probably sum up my busy March and April with one word.
So...I thought to myself...Okay, start telling Charles all the things you're thankful for about him, tell him what he's good at, and what he's done well lately. While I think those are effective and do work. I think there's a deeper calling as a wife in the area of words of affirmation.
Speaking spiritual truth over my husband for WHO he is, not WHAT he has done.
The difference between an unconditional acknowledgment when I've see an element in his heart, or a conditional compliment on a accomplishment I've seen him preform.
One will send him on his face before the Lord, "make more more like that Lord", and the other will keep his mouse wheel spinning...hungry for another praise. Example...
Charles, I see your generous heart. You love to give. You're so good at giving away and not holding back. You really please the Lord's heart with your willingness to give. Charles, I see your love for your boys. You really listen, hold, and play with them. They are blessed to have you as their dad. I can tell you really want to impart God's truth and love into their hearts.
I recognized and acknowledged God's call on my husband to give, and his deep desire to have The Father's heart for his sons.
Verses...That was nice of you to give money to them, way to go. Or, You're a great dad, thanks for playing with them.
See the difference? Both are grateful and complimentary, but one truly speaks to elements God has placed in their hearts and the callings and gifting in them. It draws out what God has put in their depths and spurs them onto more. Not just rewarding them with a cookie for a trick well done.
Husbands need encouragement, and if it's based only on performance they can easily become discouraged because they do fail. But, at all times, we can encourage our husbands on who they are even if what they are doing isn't wowing us. That glimmer of calling is always reflecting, even if it's not blinding us. Find the glimmer, magnify it.
Look for specific ways God has gifted your husband. Beautiful glimpses you've seen in his heart. When you see it in action---even a little bit---encourage him in The Lord.