Being a Compassionate Wife and Better Mom Monday’s Link-up!

Last May, my husband lost his position with the company he had served for over 14 years.

While there had been some hints and clues in previous months, the news still came as a surprise.  One day he was employed, then a few days later it was all over.  Company cutbacks, and our family wasn’t the only one affected.

We were incredibly blessed with a severance package, limited but extended insurance, and there was a savings account to fall back on for a time.  In reality, our situation wasn’t exactly hopeless or disastrous.  Besides, God is our ultimate provider!

But, I don’t think my heart got that entire message.  Not at first.

Even though I knew all of this information, my emotions went into overdrive just a wee bit.  Okay, a BIG bit. We were smack dab in the middle of a large home improvement project and stress levels were already at premium.

I stressed about the project, thinking we would have waited if only we knew….

I became overwhelmed by the question will it be easy or difficult to find other employment?

I tossed and turned over many thoughts, except the ones I needed to be focused on from the start.

What is my husband feeling?  How is he doing?

 

And to take it one step further — How can I bless him right now?

Being a Compassionate Wife ~www.thebettermom.com

As wives, it’s so easy to become carried away with our concerns and to forget or neglect considering the heart concerns of our spouse.

I’m not suggesting you totally disregard your emotions or feelings, but I do think it’s incredibly tempting to think of ourselves first and get stuck there.  In this situation, both my husband and I had questions.  Both of us were thinking about the future and wondering next steps.  Both of us needed understanding and compassion for the road ahead.

But being initially stuck on my own swirl of emotional response wasn’t exactly helpful overall.

So today, I offer just a few things I learned about being a compassionate wife from this experience:

1.  PAUSE.  Before jumping the gun, turning molehills into mountains, or bombarding our spouses with whatever is on our minds right now — hold off for a bit.  If this seems incredibly difficult, well…it is.  But, not impossible.

2.  PRAY.  We need discernment ladies.  Sometimes we’re asking our spouse to help and listen to every little detail when the Lover of our souls is available to hear us out.  God will help us filter through the pile of reactions and calm our hearts, maybe before approaching our husbands.

3.  PAY ATTENTION.  Take note of his needs as well as your own.  It’s scriptural to think of others and not only of ourselves (Phil 2:4), especially in a marital relationship.  Your husband desperately needs to know his heart is safe with you, and that you care deeply enough to pay attention to what’s going on.

4.  PRACTICE.  Yes, in order to make it stick…we probably need practice.  I know I do!  Apply these steps to real life situations, asking the Holy Spirit to change your way of response.

Being a wife who is compassionate towards her husband’s needs is not only a godly goal, but one which will benefit and enrich your marriage!

Are there other steps or suggestions you would add?

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Comments

  1. says

    Great advice, Daniele! Many years ago my hubby too lost his job. He was out of work for a year. We also were blessed to have severance and we lived off that until it ran out, then unemployment and our savings.

    But God provided and we never went into debt, lost our home or anything like that.

    It’s a hard blow when husbands feel like they can’t be a provider for their family. We need to be their own personal encourager.

    Reassuring them that they haven’t failed, that God will provide and that it’s going to be o.k., that we don’t think less of them and that they still have a role in this family. There are still ways for them to contribute to the success of the family that have nothing to do with money (and always have been).

    Another thing is for the wife to watch her spending and look for ways to save money. After my first foray to the grocery store (where I cried as I shopped) I took it as a personal challenge to make a game of saving money. I learned everything I could, including how to stockpile and make a pricebook.

    This attitude will help support hubby and the family during a job loss and ease stress. Thanks so much for co-hosting today! :)

    • Daniele Evans says

      Yes, I remember turning grocery shopping into a game of how much I could save! :) It was kind of fun…thanks for the other tips too.

  2. bluecottonmemory says

    I’ve learned there are seasons when I am the cheerleader and seasons where he is the cheerleader – in all cases we have been amazed at how God provides just in time. Our minister pointed out today that when Abraham went to sacrifice to God, when God saw that A was willing to give all to Him, He stayed his hand and provided the sacrifice – and that provision didn’t just appear – it had worked its way to arrive there right at the right moment. You are right Daniele – there is no other way to live! Blessings to you in your journey!

  3. Tiar @ The Humbled Beginnings says

    I admire your compassion in this situation, even though I’m sure it was also a real test for you. God is good always, and we both know He sees what’s happening in your lives and He will also provide. I’m so thankful that you’re able to share this experience with us, so that we may be better equipped to face something like this in our own lives. Bless you!

  4. Stacy says

    Thanks for hosting! Thankfully, we’ve never been through this situation, BUT I think these tips can be taken into account for lots of different situations. Good post!

  5. OneMommy says

    Thanks so much for hosting! Excited to link up for the first time and see some other great posts!

  6. says

    Thank you Daniel for such an encouraging post. Even when we experience financial strain, your suggestions would work!!

    Thanks for hosting the linkup party today!!

  7. Indiana Pastor's Wife says

    Listen — when he is ready. That pretty much goes along with what you have already said. I have found that my husband needs time to “process” before he wants to talk about something. (unlike me, I process out loud) But when he is ready to talk, he wants me to listen.

    Thanks for the post, these thoughts were helpful to me.

  8. lorihatcher says

    Daniele,
    Your words are wise and on target, and especially timely during this period of economic recession. Realizing that our husband’s identities (rightly or wrongly) are so closely tied to their ability to provide for their families is key to helping them maintain their pride. Just because he’s not the breadwinner at the moment doesn’t mean he’s not still the leader of his family.

    When my husband very unexpectedly lost his job, it took all the self-control I could muster not to express my thoughts that he was partially at fault. Later on, when he went through a depression and sought counseling, the counselor asked him if he was harboring any resentment against me, perhaps for condemning him when he lost his job. What a relief to hear him describe the conversation and hear that he was able to say, “No, my wife never condemned me. She was nothing but supportive.”

    Thank you, God, for setting a watch about my mouth!
    I’m visiting today from Hungry for God . . . Starving for Time and glad I did!

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