Declare Your Interdependence

Declare Your “Interdependence!”

Declare Your Interdependence

Dictionary.com defines interdependence  as, “The quality or condition of being interdependent, or mutually reliant on each other.” What a great word for marriage! The truth is, so called wedded bliss is never blissful without it! We believe every couple can enjoy the spiritual blessings of interdependence by clinging to Ecclesiastes 4:9-12.

Blessing One: “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor” (Ecclesiastes 4:9 New International Version).

Laura and I say we have one brain between the two of us. It may not be true for everyone, but after 32 years of marriage, we find that we do our best work when we work together. We see things from different perspectives, and that allows us to see the entire picture when facing a challenge.

Blessing Two: When One Falls Down

See if you recognize this blessing of interdependence, “If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up” (Ecclesiastes 4:10 NIV). One winter, I (Jay) contracted pneumonia. I slept all week so I could travel the next weekend for our Ultimate Date Night shows. Gratefully, Laura took care of everything around the house. She handled both her weekly duties and mine. There is no doubt in my mind that without her help, I would not have been able to keep my commitments each weekend.

Blessing Three: Keeping Warm

Here’s another blessing of interdependence, “Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone?” (Ecclesiastes 4:11 NIV). While this passage certainly applies to cold winter nights (and maybe not so much summer ones), we also think it suggests the importance of having someone alongside you through the “cold days” life can throw at us. A spouse can speak encouraging words during tough times. A spouse can remind another spouse of God’s faithfulness in the past. And sometimes just being there,“alongside,” is enough and no words are necessary.

Blessing Four: Three Strands

A final blessing of interdependence, “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken” (Ecclesiastes 4:12 NIV). When we stand together, whether the issue relates to the kids or a life decision, we can stand strong. And when Christ is at the center of our relationship, it makes us even stronger. He is the third strand. Keeping Christ as the focal point of any marriage does not mean hardship will not come, but it does mean you and your spouse will have the strength to fight the battle together.

Let’s declare Interdependence in our marriages.

4 Phrases Your Husband Needs To Hear

4 Phrases Your Husband Needs To Hear

4 Phrases Your Husband Needs To Hear

Women, here are four phrases your husband needs to hear from you that will make him feel loved, appreciated, and honored.

1. I’m Proud of You

From the earliest memories men were imprinted with a proud mom when he’d walk or learn to tie a shoe or clean his room.  While you are not his MOM, as his wife you need to understand the way your approval lifts him up.  Does it have to be the word “proud?” No, but here are some examples of what I mean:

  • “Honey, I love the way you keep my car cleaned and gassed.”
  • “Thanks for going to that job I know you don’t like, it takes genuine character.”
  • “I love how you play with our kids, it makes me proud to be your wife.”

Hearing these types of phrases from you will help your husband bond with you on an emotional level.

2. I Need _________ From You

Your husband wants nothing more than to make you happy.  However, he is not a mind reader and he doesn’t get subtle hints or innuendoes…oh and one more thing…he doesn’t “just know.” It’s not how God wired him.

What he needs from you is clear and concise communication.  For example, if you say, “Honey, will you take out the trash?” To him that means at some point in the future he will take out the trash, it just may be tomorrow!  If you want him to take out the trash now, then the proper way to communicate is to say, “Honey, will you take out the trash now?”  Then he will answer “yes” or “no.”

Communicating in a clear and concise manner accomplishes two outcomes: 1) He feels like he’s making you happy and 2) You can get tasks accomplished in a timely manner!

3. I Want You

Yes, we’re talking intimacy, AND yes it’s that important to him.  We know that for most marriages (80%) the husband’s sex drive is higher than his wife’s.

I (Laura) remember one night early in our marriage when the evening was progressing romantically.  Jay leaned in and whispered, “Are you in the mood?” I said, “Sure, I’m willing.” Jay recoiled back and was disgusted by my response.  He said, “I don’t want you to be “willing,” I want you to “want” to be romantic with me.”

I learned something very important that night: Willing = Obligation. Want to = Priority.

Our husbands need to know we will make our intimate life a priority!

4. I Believe In You

While the phrase, “I’m Proud of You” deals with past and present behavior, the phrase, “I Believe in You,” is all about the future.

Every man wants to matter, every man wants to make a difference, every man wants to leave his unique legacy.  And believe it or not ladies you hold the keys!

Most women don’t understand the power they have to empower their husband to be everything God intended them to be.  When you let your husband know you believe in him it empowers him to face the “dragons” in his world.  To work hard for a promotion or to request time off to coach the kids little league team, whatever the case when he knows you are right there beside him, he will thrive!

4 phrases wives need to hear

4 Phrases Wives Need To Hear

4 phrases wives need to hear

Husbands, there are four phrases your wife needs to hear from you will make her feel loved, appreciated and honored.

1. I love you. Laura and I have yet to meet a woman who says, “My husband says ‘I love you’ way too much!” Women love to hear that phrase, and you can say it in many ways.

  • Say it with your words. She really does love to hear it.
  • Say it with your touch. She loves it when you are gentle.
  • Say it with your taste. She loves kissing a clean mouth.
  • Say it with your smell. She loves a freshly showered hubby.
  • Say it with your eyes. Look her in the eyes when you say it.

2. I respect you. Women need to be respected too. Respect for her simply looks different than it does for a man. I (Jay) vividly remember sitting our son Torrey down when he was 13. He kept wearing his ball cap into the house when he knew his mom did not approve of that. I told him in no uncertain terms that he was going to show respect to his mother or have me to deal with. Respect can be as simple as holding a door or allowing your wife to go first into a building. The phrase “ladies first” is a great example of showing women respect. And it is polite too.

3. I desire you. When it comes to intimacy, she needs to know that your passion and desire are only for her. Women are much more perceptive than men, and they pick up on the little things. Your wife knows when you do not look at her like you once did. And when you steal glances at that pretty coed who serves you at your favorite eatery? Your wife really knows about it then. Keep your eyes for your wife only and communicate how much you desire her.

4. I cherish you. Most men have no idea what the word cherish means. In fact, most men have never even uttered that word. Your wife however needs to feel cherished by her husband. Early in our marriage, I (Jay) argued with Laura. I’d say, “Men know what men want, and women know what men want. Men want women. The problem with relationships is that women don’t know what they want!” After having this argument over and over, Laura finally said, “I know what I want. I want it all!”

And that, gentlemen, is what it means for your wife to feel cherished – when she feels like she has all three of the other phrases all at the same time. When you love, respect and desire your wife, she feels cherished.