Kim Shay started it. Then Carla Rolfe made an excellent entry of her own. This spurred a sort of a competition, as Jen at joythruChrist waded in, followed with great verve by Lisa at Deo Volente.
These are wise women. They are using their God-given power to build their own houses, rather than tear them down (Proverbs 14:1). Their husbands are unlikely to be tempted, out of starved desperation for appreciation, to turn aside to the honeyed lips of the temptress (Proverbs 2:16; 5:3; 6:24; 7:5, 14-21).
I surmise that these sisters have figured out that a man is better positioned to lead with joy, confidence, and competence, when he is consistently reinforced, heartened, respected, honored, encouraged and cheered on by the most important human being in his life. Contrariwise, it is bitterly hard for a man so to lead after he's been undermined, disheartened, sidelined, demoralized, and torn down from such a strategic and pivotal source.
We're all familiar with the alphabet of praise of the godly woman in Proverbs 31:10-31. For as long as I can remember, I've seen the heart of godly, wifely excellence in verses 11 and 12:
The heart of her husband trusts in her,This bespeaks a rock-solid commitment to godly benevolence and help that forms the core of a building, dominion-exercising relationship as God defines it.
and he will have no lack of gain.
She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
As I wrote years ago in Questions for a Godly Wife, God called a man to lead, and a wife can contribute to that leadership being a joy or a nightmare. It is deeply sobering, but also joyful, to lead when one is confident and assured of full-on, Christ-honoring, believing, 100% support. It is misery itself to try to forge a path forward for and with the family, while constantly having to look over one's shoulder, and dodge (or bear up under) sniping from within.
Contrary to the bitter carpings of feminists, a wife has great power. I have often said and preached (and probably written) that, if a woman has a half-decent husband, but wants to get rid of him, there's an easy way. Just praise him, privately and publicly, sincerely, heartily, and consistently.
He'll kill himself living up to it.
Though men and women are wired differently, there's a lesson here for husbands as well. Kim's post reminds me of one of my favorite blog titles ever, from the other side of the gender divide. It was, in fact, from Kim's husband Neil Shay, over on his blog. The title was: My best wife now! (—a funny play on the title of Joel Osteen's book, to which I won't link, "Your Best Life Now").
Neil, writing of Kim's excellences; Kim, telling the world of Neil's strengths.
Now, there's a smart couple.