Friday, June 15, 2012

For Father's Day, a special essay


Julie Musselman's special essay for Father's Day was originally published on her blog A Catholic Home Journal. Have a great Father's Day, everyone!

Five ways wives can help their husbands be great dads


1. Pray for your husband and with your husband

Praying for him builds him up and gives grace to him as he leads the family. Praying for him also opens up your heart to be thankful for all his gifts and talents.

Praying with your husband builds the bond of marriage and helps the two of you get through good times and bad.

To get started, trying just praying an Our Father together at the end of the day. He says the first half, she says the second half. Then share any prayer intentions.

Bob's Grampsie gave us a great prayer for married couples 26 years ago on our wedding day. It is short and covers a lot:


Prayer for Husband and Wife:

Keep us, O Lord, from pettiness. Let us be thoughtful in word and deed. Help us to put away pretense, and face each other in deep trust without fear or self pity. Help us to guard against fault-finding, and be quick to discover the best in each other and in every situation. Guard us from ill temper and hasty judgment; Encourage us to take time for all things, to grow calm, serene, and gentle. Help us to be generous with kind words and compliments. Teach us never to ignore, never to hurt, never to take each other for granted. Engrave charity and compassion in our hearts. 

   Amen.


2. Submit to his authority as head of household (Ephesian 5)


Don't be afraid of the word Submit-it means get under his mission, be to supportive.
Let him lead. There is a beautiful complementarity when the husband is the head and the wife is the heart. This doesn't mean women don't think. We certainly should give input, suggestions, and opinions all combined with his. But after all the discussion, stand behind his decision. Remember wives, the second half of Ephesians 5 instructions is for Husbands to love their wives as Christ loves the church. So he has a pretty tall order too.

3.Be united in front of the kids

Kids learn very quickly which parent is the "softy" and which one they can more easily get what they want. So as a wife, if  your husband has already said no to something, don't undermine him by saying yes. When husband and wife disagree, try to forget about right and wrong, my way, his way and work toward a solution. Ignore the little things to avoid arguments.

4. Let your husband interact with the kids in a different way than you do.

Many women who care for kids, also keep the house clean, run errands, do correspondence and many other things all at the same time. But when it's dad's time with the kids, Dad may "only" play with them, do a project with them, wrestle with them or just hang out. Accept that your husband has a different style with the children then you do.


5. Love your husband and give him time with you alone so he is fortified for the workplace and enabled to be a better dad. The marriage must always come first. As my husband Bob always says, "the best thing I do for my kids is love their mother." So be a wife that is open to that love and offering of it.

If you can't get away for an overnight, or get out for a date night, try a simple idea called "couch time." Basically, before or after dinner, husband and wife find a room, close the door and spend a little quiet time discussing the day and being alone. Bob has a great way of telling the children "OUT! I am talking with your mother." Over time the kids have learned that is non-negotiable.


God Bless all Fathers on Father's Day and Every Day! We need you, We love you.

1 comment:

  1. I especially like #4. God made us different for a purpose, and learning to respect those differences and welcome the unique interactions that a man brings to the family relationship will make the marriage stronger, the children more balanced and will help develop a culture of respect. (But I also like a man who knows how to pitch in with the day to day chores and support his wife in the tasks she has primary responsibility for!)

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