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Do You Have A Critical Spirit? | Day 11

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Welcome to Day 11 of our series, From Chaos to Calm: 15 Weeks to a Happy Home. Today we’re talking about how a critical spirit can have a negative impact on your family and marriage.

From Chaos to Calm: Day Eleven

Do You Have a Critical Spirit?

 Scripture Memory: “She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.” Proverbs 31:12

 You can download the .pdf version of this devotion here.

     Let’s be honest here. How often are you critical of your husband? This is such a huge issue for many women. I have seen women too often demoralize their husbands. Women may become so used to criticizing their husbands that it seems to be the only way they relate to their husbands. But being overly critical can be a form of emotional abuse.

     It can be hard to point the finger back at ourselves. Admitting that we have failed our husbands is not an easy thing to do! But admitting we need to change is the first step in becoming better wives – better women in Christ!

     Think about these situations:

  • Your husband is talking and you correct him.
  • You husband has an idea and you tell him it is dumb.
  • You are out with your friends and all you can do is complain about how your husband never meets your needs, never helps around the house, or is clueless when it comes to being a dad.
  • You don’t allow your husband to speak for himself.
  • You tell your husband what to do as in, “I’m the boss and you are not.”
  • You object when your husband disciplines the children.
  • You disrespect your husband in front of the children.
  • You call your husband unkind names.
  • You belittle his efforts to provide for you.
  • You do not honor your husband’s simple requests like, “Would you iron my shirt?”
  • You roll your eyes when he tells you something.
  • You sigh and roll over when he attempts to be close to you at night.
  • You say, “I didn’t ask you.”
  • You say, “You don’t know what you are talking about!” or “Why don’t you just be quiet?”
  • You are lazy at home while he is at work and dishonor him.

related: Q & A: When Your Husband is Critical

     These are just a few situations that may have come up in your married life. Take a good look at yourself today and determine to speak in a way that will uplift him daily. The Bible says, “Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.” Proverbs 16:24. Bless your husband with goodness all the days of his life.

     Today, I want you to pray about your own attitude toward your husband. Whether you are critical only on occasion or to the point you have been verbally abusing your husband, having a critical spirit is never pleasing to the Lord. Ask God for forgiveness. In your prayer journal, I want you to list some of the ways you have recently been critical of your husband. Then, I want you to list at least ten ways you can show your husband respect him. Ask God to help you see the good in him instead of the bad. Last, I want you to kneel before your husband and ask his forgiveness. Tell him how much you love him and strive to bite your tongue before you speak.

“The thoughts of the wicked are an abomination to the LORD: but the words of the pure are pleasant words.” Proverbs 15:26

Action Steps to Take Today

  1. Pray and ask God to show you areas where you need to improve your own behavior in your marriage.
  2. Focus on having a positive mindset and speech instead of being critical of your husband.
  3. Determine to make a point in the coming days to make it a habit to encourage and praise your husband as often as you can.

How do you encourage your husband? Do you have any questions? Ask me!

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    1. Hi Lisa, that's a big question that could probably use an entire article in and of itself. If your husband really irritates you a lot, {and I'm not saying that's the case, because I don't know} or even if it's just now and again - try taking a deep breath and calming your nerves before you speak. Our tone of voice can be very telling - even if our words are not necessarily wrong - tone of voice can change the intent of the words all together. Sarcasm is one example. Speaking in a derogatory tone. Nagging and talking to him as if he was a child is another example. Having a meek and quiet spirit toward your husband, not raising your voice, being patient the way you would be with a church member or a boss or a child and not allowing yourself to just act however just because he's your husband and he has to love you anyway. {did that string of words made sense?} Waking up with a smile, offering an encouraging word, sending a loving text message, bragging about him to your friends or his friends in front of him, telling him how much you appreciate the things he does, going out of your way to do little things that are thoughtful and kind, doing those little things he asks you to do for him {phone calls, dry cleaning, etc.} without complaining or forgetting, etc. Don't always insist on getting your way. Let him have a say. If you haven't already, read this article for more ideas: http://avirtuouswoman.org/2013/03/08/how-to-encourage-husband-day-10/ These are just suggestions and I'm not suggesting you were failing in any way in any of these areas. I just know these things are common problems for a lot of women. If you have more questions, let me know - or if something I said didn't make sense, let me know that too! :)
      1. Yes it all makes sense. With prayer throughout the day I am doing my best. I just hope he sees the change in me.
  1. Let's see...well I run interferance between the things that frustrate him and him so he stays calm. He is a Vietnam Vet who was injured in that war. I try making jokes (I had a clerk tell me once she seen my sence of humour she couldn't stop laughing) and so if he needs a smile and laugh I get him to smile. BUT yesterday I had to show him something that made him VERY UPSET it had me upset too. We had trusted someone to do something and they hadn't and they had lied to us. So I showed and told him with gestures of the hands that yes we needed to have checked this but now we know and now we can fix it and how can I help him. He said just sit with me here. So I sat. Some times it's actions that encourages him the most. Then telling him he is 99.999% fabulous, gets him to smile. He asked why the first time and I said because we are works in progress. He said we done in heaven, thats right. He loves that one. He loves it when I say thank you for his service and just being nice. Honey is better than vinegar. And I say Im sorry. I also say dont kick yourself we didnt know, if something is wrong that did or didn't happen. And everything is for a purpose and a reason. And how can I help you.....or is there something you need me to do? The only thing I know he hates when I do this is to say "you refused to listen to me and you knew I was right and now we are here (or we are in this mess)" He hates that. SO I try hard not to do that anymore. So I say good.morning give him the scripture verse and a positive word for the day.
  2. Thanks so much for this post. please i want to know how you deal with a man you've lost trust in. i happen to check my husband phone and i realize he"s been cheating on me. he always apologizes when i confront him but he keep on changing the ladies. and he behaves as if he is not happy at home. we have kids and am trying hard to make this marriage work but its too difficult. i get irritated easily with him and ive lost trust in him he changes for few days and go back to his bad behavior. comes home anytime he likes. i feel so much pain in my heart. the things i read on his phones keeps repeating in my mind.
    1. K, I can imagine how difficult this time is for you. If your husband says he's sorry but his actions prove otherwise on a repeated basis, he's probably not going to change. First of all, you should read Boundaries in Marriage: http://amzn.to/1WONqB1 Also, read my post on Anger and Emotional Abuse in Marriage: http://avirtuouswoman.org/help-for-anger-emotional-abuse-marriage/ My post on shame: http://avirtuouswoman.org/feel-unlovable/ Biblical Grounds for Divorce: http://avirtuouswoman.org/biblical-grounds-for-divorce/ I don't know what the right thing for you to do is. I know God loves you very much and He's there for you. I also know that it's not okay for your husband to treat you without regard. I believe your marriage can be healed if he repents. But it takes two people to make a good marriage. I'm so sorry you're going through all of this!
  3. Is there a way to access the older posts? I didn't get a chance to get the PDF's of all the posts, and would like to
  4. I try to encourage my husband each day by telling him how much I love him and how I appreciate how hard he works for our family. He is a farmer so the hours he works are often very long, especially right now, and I find myself often being upset at how much he is gone. I find that many times when he comes home I am critical of all the things he might not do instead of praising for all the GREAT things he does! I respect him very much and I try to tell him that every day even when I may not always feel "happy" I am thankful to have a husband who works so hard so I am to stay home with our kids! This devotion helped me to realize how critical I can be and I am praying God will help me overcome that sin. Thank you for your devotions, they touch my heart!
  5. Prayer that your girls find their new dog. We have had a Pyrenees for 2years and love him. He is such a teddy bear with us and especially loves our grandson. They are beautiful dogs and become very attached to their family. Diane
  6. I have really enjoyed this series (a little late in the game though!)... Yesterday I really made an effort to put all of the lessons in action, although everything inside of me wanted to act in the flesh. I stumbled upon some things that were hurtful, I had a little cry and took it to the Lord. I approached my husband with the word of God as my reasoning but with love, respect, and desire for him. The outcome was OUTSTANDING! He usually gets very defensive and rude, but this time he responded with even more love than I feel like I was showing him! One of his responses was "thank you for keeping me grounded, your such a gift from God" my jaw almost hit the floor! Thank you for helping me grow in God and in my marriage! a God bless you!!!
  7. Hi, I have been enjoying your study immensely! I don't know how long ago you actually wrote this bible study but it is a blessing for where I am in my life right now. I was wondering if you have a spot on your blog with the audio/video that accompanies it. I enjoy listening to that after reading it. No worries if you don't. Hoping you have a blessed day!

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