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Tuesday, August 7, 2012

so, if you're a princess...what is HE?

   via
    
          Spring boarding off my last post on being princesses under God - I was inspired to share a little more of my heart on the subject. I loved reading so many wise, thoughtful comments, tweets, and e-mails in response to the post. My heart is to encourage and to simply remind women of their worth in the Lord. But, I also want to make sure you all understand where I'm coming from in saying we are princesses and should act like ladies, waiting for the kind of men who will treat us with honor and respect. I know that many of you get where I'm coming from on this, as you know me well. But for those who don't and for new readers, I just want to make sure y'all know - I also believe this:  


the door certainly swings both ways.

   Just as women should wait for a quality man who will treat them like a princess - I believe women should also treat men, and especially their husbands, with honor, respect and dignity as well. Roles are different and it may look different practically. But I believe men deserve to be treated with just as much care, respect, and honor as women! 



   As I've thought about this subject the last few days, I have been reminded of how important it is to cherish our relationships, to put others first, and to cultivate a heart of selflessness and service. Whether you're male or female, married or single - we are all called to love others and put them first - 

"Jesus replied, 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 
Love your neighbor as yourself." -Matthew 22:37-38
      If we as ladies wait for and expect men to be leaders, to be gentle, kind, thoughtful, and caring of us - we must also ask, how can we love, honor, respect, and care for them? I want to not only marry a man of character, but I want to be a woman of character. I've been thinking about how I can do this; how I can practically take steps toward being a woman, and possibly someday a wife, of character (Proverbs 31 is a wonderful place to start, of course!) But since I'm not yet married, I really don't have lots of wisdom or experience on this topic at all. So, I decided to ask the best resource I know - my amazing mom! Not only is she the wisest, most godly woman I know - she has been married for 29+ years. Her wisdom, experience, and advice are far beyond anything I could share. She sweetly answered some of my questions and I would like to share her answers with you today. 

    If you're single, may you be encouraged to start cultivating these qualities and store them away in your heart for the future marriage the Lord may provide for you someday. If you're married, may her words be gems of advice that you can practice today! 

{this is by no means an extensive "teaching" on all the points of Proverbs 31 or being a godly wife. it's simply a few thoughts on how to practically respect, love and care for the man in your life} 

*** 

Q: After 29 years of marriage, what advice can you share on practically showing your husband love and respect? 

A:   

  • From the very beginning, go on dates - and set aside time to be together. Go for weekend getaways when possible -especially important when you have young children. Find someone you trust to take care of your kids. It's very important to spend quality time with and focus completely on him and not the kids - not on family stuff or work. Focus on your relationship during these times! Even though you may be a career woman and/or a mom, it is very important you remember you are also his woman - there is a special, intimate relationship that just the two of you share. 
  • He's your #1 guy! Make sure he knows that in your eyes he is the most handsome, capable, amazing, wise guy in the world! Do this through words and actions. 
  • Always be on the lookout for all of his best qualities - the things he is good at and has potential to grow in. And nurture these things.
  • Bill Cosby once said that mothers are readily willing to stay up all night and care for a sick child no matter how tired they are - and that they should be willing to nurture their relationship with their husband with that same devotion. ;)
  • It's important to compliment and verbally affirm your husband in front of other people.
  • Keep your eyes on him alone and all your compliments for him alone - not for celebrities or the latest Hollywood heartthrob. 
  • Try to enjoy with him the things he loves to do. Even if you may not naturally be inclined to go fishing, do it for him! 
  • Daily, practice faithfulness, patience and forgiveness - never give up on these.

Q: What advice would you give young women who are unmarried on how to practice respecting and caring for the men in their lives - whether that be dads, brothers, friends or boyfriends? 

A: Don't put men down. Men are so often belittled in the media and by women. Generally build then up - finding their good qualities. Also, observe the men in your life whom you respect, and learn learn learn! Talk with married women about what they have learned. 

Q: Any tips on how to cultivate a servant's heart and practically serve your husband? 

A: Serving him is best done when doing things that truly help him, give him enjoyment, and make his life better - inspired by a desire to give and serve as a free gift - not to manipulate or get him to do something for you. 

***

Thanks, mom! Isn't she amazing? Be sure to check out her new blog, Coming Up Snapdragons - she has so much wisdom to offer through all her experience being a pastor's wife, homeschooling mother, a fabulous cook, a very green-thumbed gardener, and most importantly - a woman of God. 

    Please share with me in the comments below - how do you respect, love, honor, and care for your man practically? Married ladies - would love especially to hear your wisdom! And singles - share how you practice this in dating and everyday relationships with guys. I'll choose some comments to share in an upcoming post :)




  My prayer is that we ladies don't selfishly desire
 to simply be served and loved on,
but that we are more concerned with
 giving, serving and loving those in our lives.

I'm so thankful for you, my sweet readers.
Keep on shining and being sweet.
Love.

XO

Erin
---
linking up here

27 comments:

  1. Your mom is awesome :) and so are you. that is all!

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  2. I soaked up every word of this, Erin. So much wisdom from you and your mom! As a young single woman, I loved hearing what you're mom has learned so far and what you're learning as well.

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  3. All of that advice is so very good! There's a book, The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands, that I think should be a MUST READ for engaged ladies. I know it helped me stay away from a lot of mistakes. Thanks for sharing, you (and your mom) are right on!

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  4. Your mom is awesome!!! This is so cool! Thanks for sharing this! =)

    Much Love,
    L

    allglorious-within.blogspot.com

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  5. I was so excited when I saw the title of this post! Thanks to your mom for the wonderful words of wisdom. Respect is the most powerful gift a woman has to give to a man. Love it!

    Silver

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  6. Your mom is fantastic! This was such a great post.

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  7. This post came at the best time. My boyfriend is going through a tough time and I am having trouble figuring out how to build him back up, especially from far away! These are great tips and reminders to show him he's my one and only :)

    My favorite point from your (amazing) mom was to lookout for his best qualities and nurture them. I feel like it's easy to get upset over little things our boyfriends do, like forget to call when they say they will, and forget all of the times he did remember to call. If we focus more on all of the great things our men do, the little mess ups wont be as big of a deal!

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  8. Great advice from your Mom! She sounds like a pretty awesome lady.

    In all of my relationships with guys I try to honor them in ways that help them be gentlemen without making a big deal about it. I never want to be that annoying damsel in distress who can't do anything without a man by her side.

    I thank, praise, and compliment them for acts that I admire (leading singing, doing well at something, w/e), favors they do (opening doors, walking with me to my car especially after dark, giving up a chair).

    Basically I want them to know I am glad to know them. I also honor them by asking for things (protection, advice, help with "strong man" jobs) and giving things (time, serving/helping them, being a listening ear, or offering them advice that they ask for).

    I could do a lot better st forgiving the ones that hurt me though. I am definitely not quick to do that!

    As ladies we can do EACH OTHER a favor by helping men be the men God wants them to be. For, the men we know may be the husbands of ours, ours Moms, friends, etc...If I do marry, I certainly hope that the women in my husband's life have been helping him become a man of God who respects, honors, and values women as the gift that we are.

    In the meantime, I ought to be practicing with the men I know so that I can pick right up where the others have left off.

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  9. such awesome advice from your mom! i am definitely not married, and barely dating, but i always try to find ways to help guys out, even if i can't see them. even if i haven't talked to them in a while, i try to see what is going on in their lives, see if there is anything i can help with or pray for, or even just see if there is something we can do together and bond at.

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  10. This is so good, Erin! You are so right about treating the men in our life with respect and honor. And the wisdom your mom offers is simply irreplaceable.

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  11. Erin I love that you wrote this post, and I love that you brought your mom into it! Super neat. I love the advice your mom had to share! Beautiful!

    Love, xoxo
    http://insunshineandshadowsmew.blogspot.com/

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  12. Another great post :) I love those princess & prince shirts!!!

    XO
    www.pearlsandpaws.blogspot.com

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  13. What a great post. Such a good idea to interview your mom.Congrats to her on 29 years of marriage!

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  14. What an amazing role model you have!!! You are one blessed gal that is for SURE!!! :):):)

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  15. I absolutely loved these questions and answers! Awww, I didn't know your mom was the one behind Coming Up Snapdragons. Too neat. :)

    I hope you are having a great day!

    xo
    purposelyathome.blogspot.com

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  16. thanks for your comment :D it is easy to take relationship for granted so it is important to appreciate the other person and respect them :D

    -jessica
    http://www.jumpintopuddles.com/

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  17. Loved this! What a great reminder! I loved what your mom said about not belittling men. One thing I've learned in the last year or so is that men NEED our respect. It's crucial and so helpful to them to build them up, privately and publicly. I liked that she said to find their good qualities - such practical, wise advice. Thank you and thank your mom too! Love you girl!

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  18. Your mom is right on point with this! It's funny how growing up my parents, especially my dad being a pastor as well would always give me bits of wisdome just like this. One thing my dad always would say weekly was "God won't waste a godly man with just any woman. So focus on being that godly woman and then God will bring that right man"

    I'm so happy to be a sponsor with you! I already gained 4 new followers in a day! Lol love ya girl!

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  19. great post honey, i really love it! mum are the best!

    xx

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  20. heyy what a cute blog!
    mind to follow each others? let me know!

    xoxo
    rheapunya.blogspot.com

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  21. The key to mine is let them be who they are. Sometimes it fails miserably and you don't like them but you still love them.

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  22. get out! those pillows are to die for. xo

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  23. It's so crazy because your last two post have been exactly wht God has been placing on my hear lately. I've set my expectations high and they are established, now it is time to work on how I can become a more godly, servant-hearted woman, who will make a good wife someday.
    I love your blog, keep it up! :)

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  24. Beautiful! :)

    http://the-wandering-heart.blogspot.com

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  25. Sweet sweet! I love this post :) and I LOVE that your mom was part of it. I have a special relationship with my mom too, and I just don't think it's common enough these days. Embrace it!!!

    Stopping by from "The Sweetness of Laughter". She recommended your site as I am looking for likehearted women with encouraging and uplifting Blogs. I knew from the moment I saw your adorable header that I would love your blog :) and I DO! Hope you don't mind if I stick around and catch up!!!!

    Blessings!
    Amanda @ www.amandalaura.blogspot.com

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  26. WHAT a beautiful POST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 Love you ERIN! LOve your HEART!

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sweet friends, share your heart.

"kind words are like honey...sweet..and healing.." -proverbs 16:24.

xo.

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