4 Things Fathers Should Teach Their Daughters About Men Part V
My mother and father divorced shortly after they married. I became a casualty: affected by things I could not control. Subsequently, I have very few memories of time spent with my dad growing up.
I knew of my Father: his strong accent, thin frame and signature grin. I was aware of his culinary genius, handsome features, and his love for the finer things in life. What I did not know was who my father was: his beliefs, perspective, and life experiences.
I treasured the few visitations we’d spent together, but I longed for late night talks, daddy daughter dates, and special times alone with just he and I. Consequently, the lessons a girl should learn from her father I missed; and so I taught myself.
My teachers were television, culture, father figures, books, God, and life. My greatest understanding about men came much later after I joined the ranks of the MOB Society (Mother of Boys). Raising boys has taught me some valuable lessons about men.
A few years ago I began to pay close attention to their responses to my affirmation: a raised head, poked out chest, and a look of inner confidence seemed to embody them. They were different: a better version of themselves. And then, I had an epiphany, it wasn’t just boys that needed the praise of their mothers, men needed the praise of their wives too.
Often women joke about the male ego needing to be stroked, but it is more than that. It is part of the master blueprint created by God. Men are designed to respond to the esteem of a woman.
Which explains why teenage boys make a fool of themselves in the presence of a cute girl at the mall, or a middle aged man loses all sense of reason when a 20 something female bats her eyes in his direction. It is this same innate response that has the power to breath life into a dying marriage and a broken man.
This wasn’t rocket science but it was something I had not been intentional about. Maybe it was just an oversight, an innate tendency to be selfish, or my utter naivete about men. Whatever my reasoning was, it became increasingly clear I needed to encourage my husband. This is the last thing I think fathers should teach their daughters about men.
# 4 Men Need Encouragement.
Most mothers of boys have accumulated a story or two about their son’s broken bones, near death experiences, or his never ending sense of adventure. There is something about the male species that seems to attract risk and danger. They are born with this seeming sense of being invincible. As they grow, however, sometimes this animal instinct seems to wane, leaving some men a fraction of the man they were intended to be.
Discouragement, self-doubt, and despair are the usual culprits rendering men ineffective at life. Sometimes a man may find himself stuck in this place, unable to move beyond the potential of who He could be in order to become the man he should be. T.D. Jakes, author and pastor had this to say in his book, “He – Motions: Even Strong Men Struggle”.
Some men never realize this sense of their true selves, and that is why their manhood never quite seems to flow outward to those who desperately need them to grow up. They run in place but never arrive. Or they go through the motions but without the peace and joy that come from fulfilling their destiny, moving reactively like a marionette whose wires are pulled by the actions of others.
I am convinced discouragement impacts every man at some point, and when it does the woman in his life will know it. She will see it in his demeanor, loss of fight, and his reluctance to pursue the dreams placed housed deep within his heart. The good news is a woman’s encouragement has the potential to lift a man out of despair.
This is why it says Provers 31: 10 – 12 (NIV) says, ”A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.”
A woman who builds up her husband makes a lasting investments in her household. Which for some, this may seem unimportant, a waste of time, or just not desirable if the efforts of the woman are not reciprocated. Why should she encourage a man who isn’t encouraging her, or choose to love him when she feels unloved?
This is a logical argument, but Christianity is illogical. This faith asks us to love our enemies and turn the other cheek. This is not a 21st century recipe for the confident woman. This is seemingly some 50s rhetoric that has no place in the minds of the modern woman.
But a relationship with Christ changes everything. Thus, a man’s reciprocation of a woman’s treatment towards him does not govern a wife’s behavior; Christ does. She is able to love him in spite of what he does in return, if she chooses to.
Sometimes a woman must encourage a man in spite of what she is receives in return. This is not always the case but there are seasons in marriage. A man simply may not have encouragement to give. In faith, a wife can pour into him what she receives from God in order to heal the brokenness in his soul. Prayerfully, these deposits will enable him to rise above discouragement.
Though difficult to do, it is doable with God. As, I bring this series to a close I do so with optimism that every woman who did not receive lessons from her father would benefit from the few nuggets I’ve shared over the past 5 weeks. May each of the four principals become a conviction for every wife so that we can strengthen our marriages and fortify our families. In doing so we increase the chances that a father will be in the home of every child so that no woman has to grow up with the absence of her father.
Meet Me in October!