How to be a Good Wife When You are Not “Good Wife Material”

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I am always reluctant to give marriage advice since I don’t consider myself “wife of the year;” but then again, who wants marriage advice from one of those seemingly “perfect wives” who none of us can relate to whatsoever.

I have always loved the idea of marriage. I am pretty sure I was ready to get married at 4-years-old; well, at least I thought I was ready. When I did finally get married, I was pretty sure I was meant to be single for my entire life (just kidding, kinda).

I was a “rock-star” at the single life! I fully took advantage of the freedom it offers. I got as much education as I could. I built a solid group of quality girlfriends and traveled all around the United States to see them.

My first year out of college, I taught 7th grade in Denver, CO. That whole year I explored Colorado with my family and hit the Rocky Mountain slopes with my friend. Since I had the summer off (paid) I also traveled to LA to spend time with one of my best girlfriends.

One night we thought we would go “star-searching” and guess who we ran into? Ashton Kutcher, Demi Moore, Sophia Bush, and Penelope Cruz! Later that summer I visited Dallas to see my college friends and we went to a party that Nick Canon was DJing.

Not to be a name-dropper, but my life was fun and I was good at being single. It wasn’t just that. I was good at being a girlfriend to my girls. I always made sure I stayed connected to my high school best friends. Every time I came home, I made sure we grabbed dinner or coffee.

I thought for sure I would be a good wife because I thought I was a pretty awesome friend to have, but I really struggled (and still do) to find my identity as a wife.

What the heck does a good wife look like these days? I don’t do laundry. I don’t make beds. I don’t pick up clothes off the floor. I don’t care if the house is a mess. I don’t exercise. I do cook for enjoyment (never out of obligation). My resume was (and is) pretty domestically shabby.

To make matters worse, I have never made a lot of money. It seems like society let’s women who make good money off the domestic hook. I am a minister and teacher and last time I checked ministers and teachers do not typically bring home a whole lot of bacon.

According to society and even the church, I have very little to offer a man. I can cook pretty darn well, but being a chef is not my identity or even my desired life-career. Although I love serving my husband (when he is being nice to me), I don’t believe “maid/food service” makes anyone good-wifey-material.

4So what does then? What makes us good wives according to God and reality? Let me tell you something. One of Luke and my first dates was him volunteering his time to help me with the youth group I was currently the pastor of. He tells me now that he loved watching me minister to the teens and that this was one major reason he fell in love with me.

When I ask him girly-on-the-spot-loaded-questions like “Luke, what are the three top reason you love me?” he laughs nervously and says “I don’t know; you are cool, sexy, and smart.”

The truth is ladies, being a good wife is being your best self. Sometimes life gets in the way and we start striving to be someone we are not. When we strive to be someone else, we get stressed and unhappy. When we get stressed and unhappy, we become a nagging bundle of kill-joy!

Your husband married you because He likes YOU. I know, sometimes we become so unpleasant that we don’t even like ourselves. This is when we must stop and re-evaluate. Am I being true to my gifts and personality or am I trying to replicate someone else’s gifts and personality? Am I allowing the stress of life to change who I am; who he initially fell in love with?

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Focus on your strengths and stop worrying so much about your weaknesses. Ask the Lord to help you with your weaknesses, but also accept that you are who you are and changing your struggles is a very slow process (sometimes life-long).

Being “good wife material” has nothing to do with how well we cook, clean, how much money we make, or even how well we serve our men; but rather, simply being true to ourselves – who God made us to be!

Besides, men are very simple creatures and if you know how to make a decent sandwich, you are off to a great start!

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9 Comments

  • Why, I had no clue that you were soooo messy 🙂 (wink). It is true, the man married ya because he wanted/wants you! I. think also, we change and grow in our adulthood as much as in our childhood. I think I’m actually learning more now then I did while growing up…errrr ..I’m actually STILL growing up. You are not the food you are able to cook nor is anyone as good as just how they fluff n fold. Although I gripe about those from time to time I will admit, I actually like doing laundry with my daughters and cooking new foods and coupons! I didn’t think I would be that domestic one day, but I kinda am. I also enjoy someone else doing household stuff while I work. It’s so true that what. really matters is what’s in a person’s heart….not what’s in their bank account or chore lists. GREAT BLOG POST!

  • Just as we submit to another we also serve one another…that may look different for each couple, but I hope “my best self” will never be too good to do the menial, and might I add, God-given work of cleaning the house. When I worked someone else did it, but it’s important to my husband, so it’s important to me (even thought I would rather be doing almost anything else!:)

  • Jory,

    You remind me so much of my daughter-in-law. She would say the same thing you did, and she is a perfect fit for Josh.

    Thank you for sharing this.

    Glenna

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

  • Jory, I so enjoy your writing. Through the daily task of checking emails, I’m reminded to stay true to who I am designed to be. This is great life advice not just marriage material. I’m so happy for you, I’m so proud of you for listening and doing this ministry. Girl, you are impacting! Love YOU!

    Side note: Love how your writing more about love & marriage with Luke back in your arms! Pretty cute if you ask me.

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