As a Christian life coach, I’m privileged to have insight into many healthy marriages, as well as some that aren’t doing so well.
View From the Top limits our focus to men for the Iron Sharpens Iron Mastermind. Over time, however, we’ve observed the importance of loving and supportive wives in the lives of our members.
Day of Gratitude
This Thursday, we stop work and our usual routine to give thanks for an extraordinary turn of events in the history of the world.
To hear President George Washington, in his Thanksgiving Proclamation of 1789, reminds me of how exceptional the American Revolution was.
Never before in the history of mankind had a nation fought for independence, won it, and then voluntarily refused to replace one king with another.
To have two years of orderly, productive and civilized self-rule without a king was an achievement, in Washington’s eyes.
The Founding Fathers fought, bled and died to establish the first constitutional republic. A government, as President Abraham Lincoln said many years later, “Of the people, by the people, and for the people.”
It’s lost on us sometimes how special this was. All you have to do is take a long look across the previous millennia of human history to realize that kings, tyrants, and dictators were the norm.
How Special and Unusual She Is
I sometimes look back at the man I was in my late teens when I married Robin, and I’m dumbfounded that she chose me.
It’s not that I was vicious, like a drug dealer or a street thug. The broken parts of me were much more difficult to spot because I was an ambitious entrepreneur. Respectability can often mask deep, unhealed wounds and issues in a man’s soul.
In fact, as leading online mastermind groups has shown me, many men receive the blessing of their wives long before they possess the maturity or self-awareness to handle them well.
I believe God created women with a certain ability to handle many of these shortcomings in their husbands, but we should never presume on them.
Instead, I encourage our members to think the same way about their wives. I’m moved to thank God all the time for my wife’s grace and loyal, supportive nature.
There are plenty of other opinions on this. I simply choose to remember what God says to us in Proverbs 18:22:
“He who finds a wife finds what is good, and obtains favor from the LORD.”
Guys, there are bad apples in every bunch. But most of the time, the men of the Kingdom of God get something beautiful, special and praiseworthy when they marry His daughters.
God Made Women Highly Influential
At the extreme ends of society, men outnumber women. The very top and the very bottom, in other words, are where we truly “dominate.”
Most of the men in the Iron Sharpens Iron Mastermind, however, are in the great middle - where we work, live next-door to or attend the same church as our sisters, and their presence in numbers is on par with ours.
If there’s a category where the ladies have us beat, guys, it’s in connecting and sharing with each other. You don’t see many groups of men getting together to be transparent and authentic.
Well, we do that in Iron Sharpens Iron ... but my point is your wife has your ear. She studies you closely. She’s usually the social coordinator in your house. She is a tremendous help to you.
The question is do you have the eyes to see it, or the heart to appreciate it? Or do you write off what she brings into your life, out of pride or contempt?
Do you think that it’s just an accident that men are far more vulnerable to isolation and loneliness than women?
Do you think it’s a coincidence that married men have single men beat in nearly every category - out-living, out-earning, out-performing and out-enjoying them?
Your wife is a blessing, guys. Let’s not mistake her for anything else; she is a gift to you from your Father.
Lovingly, I also want to warn you - you’ll answer to Him for how you treat her!
How to Show Gratitude This Thanksgiving
There are too many “to-do lists” and formulas when it comes to showing appreciation today. I want to challenge you to go beyond simple things like a bouquet of flowers or chocolates.
I want men to realize that loving a woman is a lifestyle, in the same way being an athlete or entrepreneur is.
You can’t just do gifts at Christmas or her birthday and “call it good.” That’s a good start, but over time it will decline if you don’t grow beyond it.
Gary Chapman has a great book called “The Five Love Languages,” if you’re unsure of how your wife would be most likely to get the right message.
But any woman will be moved by words of sincere appreciation from her husband, even if he stumbles through them or can only read them out of a journal.
So this Wednesday night, after the kids go to bed, I want you to sit down and write out at least three things you appreciate about her.
On Thursday morning, you can deliver this in many ways - you could bring her a cup of coffee or breakfast in bed, with that note on the tray.
Or you could read them aloud … or even send them in a text message if for some reason you’re not in the same room or house at the time.
The One Thing You Can’t Afford to Miss
Whatever you do, make sure at least one thing you appreciate focuses on how she makes your life better.
Don’t make the list sexual, in other words, or about how kind she is to the children. Those are important … but wives are especially moved to hear how their influence helps to build their husbands into better men.
Don’t ask me why guys. I didn’t create this planet, I just live in it.
We read the e-mails our members’ wives send in as their husbands go through the Iron Sharpens Iron Mastermind; if the women weren’t impressed, we’d know by now.
I have it on good authority that most wives’ hearts beat faster when they see their husbands growing, improving and becoming better versions of themselves.
Now it’s time for you to test it for yourself.