I am SOOOOO proud of this precious wife who is absorbing God’s Word and truth like a sponge and striving to obey Him and learn to respect her husband in ways that actually meet his deepest masculine needs. She is learning so much! God is truly at work in her heart and it is a beautiful thing to watch – even from over the internet! 🙂 I wanted her to share this post with all of my readers because I believe wives NEED to hear this. This wife’s description of her “demon” is DEAD ON. I wonder if husbands know about this stuff?
PS – I have my FIRST Peacefulwife VIDEO up on the Peacefulwife Blog Facebook Page today. Check it out!
I started the blog Lessons of Mercy as an accountability to myself, but also to those out there who have found themselves at a place where they see things in their life that need to be transformed into Christ-likeness, however, need a practical way to take the first steps.
Let me tell you a story about Wednesday night. I really debated writing about this, because my husband reads my blog, however, I’m going to ask him to skip this one because I think the women reading this blog, need to hear about Wednesday night.
I’ve already posted on the this blog about discovering some major disrespect for my husband. The kind that doesn’t even appear like disrespect in the world we live in today, that seems completely justified, and is so intertwined in my every day life that it’ll be like lifting boulders 100 times my own weight to remove these nasty habits. Yeah, that kind of disrespect.
Wednesday was just an ordinary day until my husband got home from work. We haven’t been sleeping very well, and he’s been tired. So he sat down in the chair and turned on the TV while I started fixing supper.
((There is too much back story about the TV “issue” to tell you everything but I will say that I do not have a TV addiction. I actually almost hate the TV. I never watch it unless he is watching it. Though I have learned to enjoy a couple of the shows. We went 1 1/2 years without any television at all, and recently fixed our antenna so we get all the local channels, which is quite a few more than our parents use to get, but we still don’t have satellite or cable. Even with the absence of TV, we did not take complete advantage according to *me* for what we could do with our time as a family, which tends to make me resentful toward my husband, and with it available in our home again, it is quickly escalating in more time being on and watched than I personally care for it to be on.))
One little thing like the TV being on, quickly invites my demon (yes, I believe everyone has a demon that studies them and tempts them constantly) into a conversation with me. He says “you’re headed right back to the life where you only speak to your husband on commercials. Even re-runs are more important than you and the kids.”
I know my Savior. And I can feel the Holy Spirit move. However, I don’t hear from God like I hear from my demon. I can pray and spend time in silence after begging God to speak, and feel like after a day of fasting, I still am clueless what God is saying to me, or if He is speaking at all. But the very moment something pulls on my frustrations, fears, insecurities, or weaknesses, I can hear so vividly and clearly the voice of my demon and am able to carry on long detailed conversations in good or bad directions.
On Wednesday when my demon started talking to me, I spoke back. But not in my normal fashion. I said “Get behind me Satan. I’m not going down this road anymore.”
My husband left to go play guitar. He’s been doing this once a week after the kids go to bed and I LOVE it! It gets him out of the house, the chance to play and grow in his talent, and me plenty of time to play around on the computer, crochet or do anything I want without the guilt of ignoring him or the kids.
When my husband left, my demon started talking to me again. “He was tired tonight, but he has enough energy to go play guitar and stay out til midnight?”
For 11 years, I have taken the bait and spun totally out of control. I’d spend HOURS at a time ripping my husband to shreds to myself because I let my demon control where the conversation went. But in the last month, God is teaching me things and exposing my sins in grave detail in a way I’ve been so blinded to in the past.
I took those temptations to rip my husband apart and I purposely did the opposite. I sent him a text thanking him for folding the clothes. How could I almost have missed that he did that for me? Remember, it’s because I was being coached to be mad about the TV being on?
I spent time praying for him and thinking about how much we’ve grown in our marriage.
When he got home, I had just headed to bed, which I don’t normally do. I am always up waiting for him to get home. But like I said, we haven’t been sleeping well and I was really tired. (Which also could have been from such spiritual warfare going on in my heart.)
When he came to bed, he turned on the TV. I know I know, the stinking TV is like the center of my Wednesday!! See, we’ve fought quite a few times, jokingly and in some very heated and hurtful conversations about the TV at night. I like total darkness and complete silence. He likes the TV being on.
I bet you know what happened. My demon whispered so tenderly to my ears it practically gave me chills down my neck. “How come for 11 years he is the one who always gets to go to bed the way he prefers? Why did he automatically decide *you* have to learn to go to sleep with the TV on? Why can’t he learn to go to sleep with it off?”
I was so afraid of what I was about to do next that I kissed my husband on the cheek, said “I love you” and then told him I was going to go ahead and sleep on the couch. When he asked why, I just said as respectfully as I could, “I can’t sleep in here tonight.”
I had to remove myself. Do you have any idea how many times we’ve fought while trying to go to bed because I’ve had hours of husband bashing sessions with my demon and then I take the opportunity to slay him apart to his face for how awful he is, how bad he messes up, how much he hurts me and every other thing I’m TOTALLY justified and entitled to say?
I laid down on the couch and quickly heard “Why isn’t he out here? He knows the TV is bugging you, why isn’t he saying you should jump back in bed and he’ll sleep on the couch? Oh yeah, and don’t forget about this…. even though you told him you really need it, he still isn’t praying with you.” Ouch. The most tender point of devastation and he HAD to go there. I tell you what, my demon knows me SO well. The TV has NOTHING to do with praying together, and he brought it up as a last resort to get me to walk back in that room and destroy our intimacy, respect, trust and unity in our marriage.
I prayed and I told my demon that I have so much sin of my own and I am called to respect my husband no matter what I *think or feel* in any given moment. I purposefully for the VERY FIRST TIME IN MY LIFE took my thoughts captive, stopped the demon from talking to me, and went to sleep.
I woke up so relieved!! I didn’t say a bunch of really mean or hurtful things I couldn’t take back. I kept the TV in perspective and didn’t allow that to be the standard by which I measure him as a husband and father. I took my thoughts captive and spoke truth over the lies.
I can do this with the help the Holy Spirit is providing. These boulders can be moved and these habits can be changed.
There are two main reasons why I am finally finding freedom and success. And they have NOTHING to do with who my husband is, how he acts, or how he treats me. (Because ladies, I got a REALLY good one. Bragging for another post : )
The first thing I’m really understanding for the first time in my life is that I have thought for 11 years that I’m better than my husband. It comes out in a few different ways but mostly in the attitude that he sins more than me, and worse than me. I’ve undoubtedly entertained this lie intimately with thoughts, actions and words that say “I would never have a TV addiction.” “I’m so much better than him because I’d never do _______.” “If he was really walking with the Lord he would do xyz.”
Hello pride. No, I don’t have a TV addiction. But I have an internet addiction. No, I wouldn’t ever do _____ but I have spent multiple conversations “gossiping” to my friends. No, he isn’t doing xyzright now, but I don’t do ALL KINDS of commands in scripture. It’s disgusting how blind I’ve been to my own sin and how much pride has taken residence in my marriage.
And secondly, I will answer for my actions as a wife. And God is not going to accept from me “Well, he did this or that.” My sins will have no justification. And if I really love the Lord and want to serve Him in obedience, I can’t keep looking at someone elses actions and let that decide how I react to the commands my Savior has given me. I have resolved in my heart that I want to live by the authority of God’s Word, not because of what I have or don’t have but because I have the opportunity to be obedient and give my life in service to become as christ-like as I can this side of eternity.
The Holy Spirit will empower me to live my life with purpose IF I choose to participate. My only other option is to live my life in reaction to the way other people act by default. That really leaves me trapped and defensive. Feelings I’m definitely no stranger to, but have never been happy to claim as my identity.
Stop having conversations with my demon.
Take my thoughts captive.
Meditate on the two truths I’m learning from above.
Live with purpose.
Bring God glory by being obedient to the call on my life no matter if others are doing the same or not.
Respect my husband. Always. In ALL ways.
I had this same LOUD voice in my head all the time – every waking moment – that was constantly accusing my husband of evil – evil motives, evil desires, evil intentions towards me. I trusted that voice. I thought that was normal. Turns out the voice was WRONG. I was greatly deceived. Learning to respect our husbands involves silencing the demon and our sinful nature. It means staying on top of sin and repenting for ever single thing that has the slightest offense in God’s sight. And it means being empowered by God’s Spirit to do what we can’t do on our own. This is a process. I am so thankful for this peek into a wife’s thinking and into her heart. What she is describing is the battle to slay sin and crucify ourselves so that we can live for Christ – it’s part of learning. She does a FANTASTIC job describing this stage of the journey. Thank you SO MUCH, Lessonsofmercy, for sharing this powerful piece with us! (PS – my demon had used ALL of those exact same lines on me for 15.5 years. WORD FOR WORD! The tv, the praying, everything. He still tries it on me sometimes – but I cling to Christ and my husband and don’t listen to the accuser anymore!)
PLEASE check out the post my husband wrote in response to this “The Voice in His Head”.
SOMETHING TO CAREFULLY CONSIDER:
Demons are real according to the Bible and they are extremely powerful. It is dangerous to try to have conversations with them. God is much more powerful than demons are, but we are not. Here is what Scripture has to say about some false teachers and the casual way they spoke of demons:
Bold and arrogant, they are not afraid to heap abuse on celestial beings; 11 yet even angels, although they are stronger and more powerful, do not heap abuse on such beings when bringing judgment on them from the Lord. 12 But these people blaspheme in matters they do not understand. They are like unreasoning animals, creatures of instinct, born only to be caught and destroyed, and like animals they too will perish. II Peter 2
8In the very same way, on the strength of their dreams these ungodly people pollute their own bodies, reject authority and heap abuse on celestial beings. 9But even the archangel Michael, when he was disputing with the devil about the body of Moses, did not himself dare to condemn him for slander but said, “The Lord rebuke you!” 10Yet these people slander whatever they do not understand, and the very things they do understand by instinct—as irrational animals do—will destroy you.
A Husbands Persepective
On Sunday, September 23rd, the Peacefulwife ran a guest post by Kayla Gulick titled My Demon. In the article, Kayla described how all of the voices in her head accuse her husband of the worst. This prompted a discussion between the Peacefulwife and me. She then asked me about whether a guy has similar voices in his head that paint a bad picture of his wife’s intentions.
FROM A HUSBAND’S PERSPECTIVE
I told her that husbands do have a voice in their head, but it rarely talks about their wives. It is a voice telling them “You don’t have what it takes to do ……,” “You are a failure at …..,” “You are an inadequate husband, father, or son”, and “You are not good enough.” Now, I need to clarify that this voice isn’t on all of the time and usually confined to one topic at a time. This is very different from how the Peacefulwife has explained to me about women’s brains where you have an internal voice coming at you accusing your husband and justifying your disrespect and need for control almost constantly (when a wife is cherishing sin in her heart and is not filled with God’s Spirit).
Much to my surprise, after I had made that statement I turned to find the Peacefulwife with mouth agape, stunned, and fascinated with my response. Shortly, after a little water and some cool compresses on her forehead, she said, “Hmm…Satan’s strategy is to attack the God-given spiritual authority from two sides. The accuser fills the wife’s head with a barrage of ammunition against her husband about how he is not worthy of respect and how she is totally justified in her disrespect and contempt. AND the accuser fills the husband’s head with thoughts about how he is not worthy of respect and that his wife is absolutely right in her observation of his faults. The two accusing voices paralyze leadership in the marriage, in the church, in business, and in government.”
IS THIS NORMAL?
Not wanting to jump to conclusions too quickly, we wondered if this theory held up in other marriages. Understanding that a voice in my head just started saying, “Yeah….Sure, check this out…You will only find that you are different than other guys. Other guys are better than you and wouldn’t think like this at all.” So, the Peacefulwife posted the question on the Facebook page. Shortly, Kayla Gulick responded that she had just asked her husband the same question without giving him my response and he said THE SAME EXACT THING.
Another reader, a husband, responded, “I ditto your husband. We fight the fear that we may not be ‘up to the job’ almost every day. But we are men, so it is shameful to talk about it.”
A husband wants to hide any insecurities or faults that he thinks he has because he is afraid that his wife or family will not respect him. He is afraid that he might lose any clout that he might have with his wife and family if he was to let a weakness be revealed.
Wow….So far so good with testing this theory. At church on Sunday evening, we asked the same question to several men to see if they responded in the same way. Their responses seemed to first indicate that maybe I do think like a man and secondly, and probably most importantly, that the idea of Satan attacking the spiritual authority of the marriage from both sides was probably true.
So I started searching for a way to describe what a man hears in his head and I came to the conclusion that the voice in his head is all about exposing his insecurities. I found the following quote from Jake Dudley, a 24 year old blogger, to be a really good description of how a man thinks.
And that’s all insecurity is – FEAR. Fear of things we have no control over in the first place. I know what it feels like. I’ve been faced with the doubt you experience when you are staring at a person of the opposite sex wanting soooo badly to tell them how you feel. But instead you stand there frozen from the insecurity of thinking they’ll NEVER like someone as ugly as I think I am. I’ve stood at the crossroads of a major life decision thinking that no matter which I choose I will fail, so instead I turn into a little boy and run away from all possibilities. I’ve ended things and started things and ignored people and ran away from opportunities all because somewhere along the way I believed my self-inflicted insecurities defined who I was as a man.
But here’s the thing: insecurity has NOTHING to do with who I actually am as person. Instead, it has EVERYTHING to do with who I’m terrified of becoming if I take a risk. I usually think I’ll fail. I usually think I’m not good enough. I usually think girls think I’m ugly. I usually think my time has run out. I usually think and think and think my way into a pity party of self-loathing and doubt that I forget that I was created in the image of an extraordinary God.
One Man’s Insecurities by Jake Dudley, www.corycopeland.net
A WIFE’S ROLE
A guy is always going to have insecurities and feel inadequate to fulfill his role as a husband and father. How can a wife work to control the demons that are not only speaking to her but her husband as well? Your husband needs your respect, your trust, your belief in him, your admiration, and your affirmation. These are the confidence pills for the common insecurity. With a little boost of encouragement your husband can overcome and lead your marriage. I found the following quote from www.greatdatespot.com to be a great description of the role of a wife in handling his insecurities:
But here’s the thing- a man’s wife has a special place : she can truly build him up and quiet all other voices of insecurity -or- she can be the loudest voice of insecurity in the world. It’s a strange and magnificient power that you women yield. And it’s a power given by the source of security.
And while it may seem that these two oppose one another- they don’t. After all- a marriage is supposed to be mirror image of a person’s relationship with Jesus- so if it’s Jesus that a man’s security comes from- then it makes sense that a wife can wield similar power…if she chooses.
Ladies- you should understand- you have two choices here- to be the voice of encouragement and bolster your husband’s security or to be the voice of insecurity and rejection and crush your man (yes- you have that power). There is no third choice- if you choose to disengage and try to be in the middle- you are choosing the latter.
Ladies- your acceptance is not just vocal- though it is that. It’s not just sex, though it is that as well. It’s not respect, though it is that too. It’s all encompassing. Give him great compliments, give him great sex, give him great respect and you will see your husband be spurred on to become the man he was always meant to be. Think about it- the key to your husband becoming who he was meant to be- who you really want him to be – lies with you. Jesus could fully do it without you- but he chose to give you as a gift to your husband to speed it along. And I know, that seems like a tall order. That seems like a lot of weight on your shoulders. But it is your burden- or your joy- depending on how you look at it. Now that is your choice.
Every wife wants her husband to be the moral authority for their family. Every husband wants his wife to be his biggest supporter, confidence booster, and encourager. When he can feel that he has your trust and appreciation it is like giving him a shot of energy. That is why it is so easy for a man to literally become unplugged when he does not feel he is getting this support. So what do you have if your husband is the moral authority of your family and you have the gift of energy he needs?
Moral + (e)nergy = Morale
Your marriage will have great morale. If my equation is correct the more of the energy you give him the greater the morale will be in your marriage. He will have the self confidence, self esteem, and drive to be the leader in your marriage and family.
But I know there are many who might say that, “My husband is definitely not the moral authority in our family and there is no way I can affirm him after what he has done.” Unfortunately, these husbands probably need the most support from their wives and yet their life yields very few opportunities for their wife to show praise and compliment thim. I think Priscilla Shirer addresses this pretty well in the following quote:
Now perhaps your husband has consistently proven that he’s not worthy of your trust. He’s been careless with money, drawn to addictions, perhaps even unfaithful to his marriage vows. The reason you can’t ascribe high value to his character, you say, is because he hasn’t shown you very much of it. And you’re right—his carelessness, laziness, or lack of integrity is not your fault. You are not responsible for what he’s done and is doing, even if you’ve been less than careful about loving him well and feeding his ego.
But even you—even now—can resolve to affirm your husband and to promise that your trust in him is not gone forever. It may need to be reconstructed with the aid of outside help and ongoing accountability, but he needs to know that your heart’s desire is to reestablish confidence in him.
Your Husband’s Two Biggest Fears, Priscilla Shirer
If we understand the destructive nature of the voices in our heads and that Satan’s plan is to attack our marriage and family we can start silencing the voices. I know when I feel that my wife is in full support with me about something the voice I hear is, “You can do this because she trusts and believes in you.” The Peacefulwife is very good at saying, “I am going to look out for the good in my husband and let God deal with his sins.”
Let’s build up the morale in our marriages starting now.
When a wife refuses to obey God’s commands by disrespecting her husband, she cooperates with Satan and becomes a megaphone that amplifies the accuser’s message to her husband. But when a wife respects and follows her husband, she cooperates with God and becomes an amplifier for God’s voice and His will. WOW! This is POWERFUL stuff! May we use our power for great good, ladies! – The Peacefulwife