My 2nd man is the greatest man I know. I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately and I honestly feel this way. I suppose really every wife should feel this way about her husband. Here are my thoughts on why I feel this way about mine.
First and foremost, we (his family) come before ministry. Some may argue or debate this point and its validity, but I feel passionately that this makes him a great man. Not for selfish or needy reasons either, but even for his testimony’s sake. I’ve always struggled with respect of men who are workaholics, even to ministry, but let their family falter. This includes some really great men of God. I realize, I may be treading on shaky ground here, however it’s been my impression that a man who goes out to save the world but loses his family, loses part of his testimony. None of the men I’m thinking about meant for this to happen in their families, I’m confident of this, but, nonetheless, it did happen.
I guess some of my thoughts started recently when we watched a movie about John Adams. (Disclaimer: we watched it on our Clear Play machine, which edits out language and any bad scenes). Don’t get me wrong, I am thankful for how he pioneered our nation through the revolution and beyond in its earlier years, however, I’m not so impressed on how his wife had to run the family while he was away and his children floundered, even rebelled against what he would have had for them. That got me thinking about missionary David Livingston. Again, he did wonderful things for the cause of Christ on the continent of Africa. However, in my womanly perspective I finished his biography with mixed feelings about him. His wife and children were left back in England and even were homeless on the streets for a while. Of course much of it was due to oversights and the fact that he was so far from home and couldn’t take care of the situation. Then there is the great Billy Sunday, who did mighty things for preaching revivals across the nation, but his own sons rebelled against what he preached.
I don’t have these feelings in a prideful or arrogant way. On the contrary, it humbles me as a wife of a great man. It leaves me to wonder if the above situations were due to the fact that these husbands and fathers were not home to do the job as a husband and father. I’m torn with the thoughts that they were called out to do a special work, but I struggle with respect of their being married fathers. It builds my respect and admiration for my 2nd man who is being used of God, but is also fulfilling his duty at home. Maybe that’s what God called these other men (and their wives) to do, but I’m so thankful that he provided me with a man in whom I can respect.
So, with this in mind, it makes me so thankful that my 2nd man struggles hard to put his family before his ministry, no, not before God, but yes, before ministry. I am humbled by this and try to make it possible for him to tend to his ministry as needed. Sometimes for a 2nd man that can be hard, depending on the staff in which he serves. Sometimes the senior pastor is in a different stage of life and may forget what it was like to have children at home. Or maybe the pastor is in the same stage, but has a different viewpoint of priorities. I know my 2nd man struggles with hoping our senior pastor understands his limitations, but ultimately he has to trust God to go before him with his testimony and reputation. Thankfully, when we were hired (years and years ago) our pastor made it a point to let 2nd man know that his family should come before ministry.
Another couple of reasons that I think my 2nd man is the greatest man I know is that there are two things he always works hard on being able to do and say. They are, “I’m sorry” and “Thank you.” He has taught me a lot during our marriage about saying these two things and we strive to teach our children as well. I’ll admit he’s even spoiled me in this area. I know we aren’t to do things in order to get thanks, but he’s so good at giving it that it has become a source of motivation for me. Just recently I found myself doing some extra work for someone else and was left feeling…well…unfinished, or out of favor because they didn’t even say thank you for all of the work I did. This made me all the more thankful for 2nd man and his example. I’ve never gotten paid to teach his kids, or do his secretarial work, or keep his home, but the thanks keeps me motivated to want to please him.
I don’t deserve the wonderful 2nd man that I have. Maybe I’ll discuss that someday…maybe not. But, I’m so thankful for him. I’m humbled that God allowed me to marry such a man that Loves the Lord so passionately and loves his family with no less fervor. I’m saddened when I talk to other wives or teens that don’t have the same thing in their homes. Yes, marriage takes work, without a doubt. However, the work is worth it and isn’t labor intensive, if kept up with. Kind of like tending a garden, the weeds come and the sun can beat hard and there can be drought to deal with, but if you keep up with these things the reward can be a beautiful display of God’s handiwork.
My mom used to tell me that there was nothing more attractive than a godly man. Seems she was right. One of the greatest things about my 2nd man is that he loves the Lord and so desperately wants to please him. Even in his seasons of struggle when he’s having dry devotions or he’s feeling a lack of zeal or questioning his usefulness, I still admire him because his turmoil is due to the fact that ultimately he desires to please God. If that ever changes, so will my admiration. So, by God’s grace I’ll remember to always lift my 2nd man up in prayer to be humble, able and usable. Keeping his family as a priority and his testimony strong.