Of course men's needs change. Of course they're dependent on the particular husband. Of course a girl can't meet all her man's needs, but she can do the best she can in aligning with the Word in her role as a wife, right?
I'd like to remind you that I sincerely believe that no man or woman can fulfill all of his or her spouse's needs. That is a job only God can do. However, we can definitely work hard and pray hard that we become the kind of spouse God intends us to be.
Thanks to Jimmy and Karen Evans' ministry Marriage Today and my life group at church, I'd like to share what I've concluded are men's top four needs and how his wife can meet them.
The King is Home! The King is Home!Honor. Make him feel like a king. A friend once told our group the story of how she makes her husband feel honored. When he walks in the door from work, she has her kids lined up, all nice and neat, and they exclaim, "The king is Home! The king is home!"
That's a little extreme. But the message behind that recitation is strong. Encourage him to be the provider for your family by reminding him of how much you appreciate his hard work. Compliment him when he's getting ready for work or when he's getting ready for bed. ;)
If you're unsure about what would make him feel honored, ask him. Sure, you may have to give him suggestions, so that he can answer with a "yes" or "no." If your husband's like mine, a grunt can mean several different things.
So Fresh & So CleanDomestic Support. While I don't suggest you take on every chore relevant to house-keeping, I am encouraging you to pick a few jobs that can help your husband feel more comfortable in your home. For instance, I grew up eating popcorn and cereal for dinner, thus missing out on the whole learning-how-to-cook-a-beautiful-Leave-it-to-Beaver-meal. So for the most part, my husband picks up the slack in the kitchen. However, I know he values a clean working space, clean floors and a clean uniform. I'll make it a point that when I get home from work, I get at least two out of three done. ;)
This brings up another issue about the domestic support need of men. It's harder for working women. Shoot, it's harder for working women to domestically support themselves. In these cases, I find it's best to talk to your spouse about which particular things make him the happiest about keeping up the home.
Is he adamant about having dinner on the table when he gets home? Or would he be okay with just not having shoes, a purse, papers, sunglasses, ipods, extension cords, plates, old food and trash on the table?
The Buddy SystemCompanionship. I've said before that women need eye-to-eye time, while men need side-by-side time. I'm continuing to learn how important this time is to my husband. The times I merely sit next to him nose-first in a book, not even paying attention to what Xbox game he's playing or which History channel show he's watching, make him happy.
When I joyfully join him in activities such as camping or Mud Nationals (a weekend full of fourwheelers and mud in East Texas), I hit the jackpot! Although these events may have not been my first choice in what I want to do with my weekend, I remember that it's about having a serving spirit. And the more I go, the more I learn to like the same things my husband does. In fact, now you can find me on the back of his fourwheeler, hollering and laughing as much as anyone else.
The hardest struggle for me in this area is to not keep score. The buddy system is about doing things with your spouse out of love rather than trying to one-up him. I have to trust that the Lord's speaking to my husband's heart - that he will try to meet my needs in return out of his own accord - not by my forcing him.
S - E - XSex. Could it be that this is really man's number one need? Maybe. Jimmy Evans says that God created men with a need for sex and women with the gift of sex.
To have a fulfilling sex life, it's extremely important to understand that men are wired way differently than women. Sounds cliche, right? Well, sometimes I forget that men can feel one way at one time and then leave the house and not think twice about how he was feeling a moment ago. It's compartmentalization. Women, it's hard for us to do this.
Women are spaghetti. Men are waffles. Us girls relate everyone and everything, and you can't say anything to us without us analyzing it to pieces. That's how we're wired. Sorry.
Nevertheless, girls, we must remember that God gave men a need for sex. Talking to your spouse about how often they should expect it is probably a good start at achieving a fun sex life. Discuss how your husband can make you feel more confident in bed or how he can turn you on.
For the longest time, my husband tried the strangest things to turn me on. I'd just laugh - definitely not being turned on. For me, hearing him speak to someone about God or how we put God first in our marriage turns me on. His leading us in prayer turns me on. His surprising me with doing a chore around the house I didn't expect him to do turns me on.
But I have to know that men can be turned on out of no where, and that doesn't make him insensitive or wrong. How cool is it that a woman can give her husband a gift that's exclusive to marriage and to her.
Men, please comment with your reactions to what I've explained as your top four needs. Women, you too. If you disagree, please share. If you men can add anything that may help us ladies out, please share. Look at me, trying to get a man to talk again . . .