Guest Post by Rodney A. Wilson
Someone once said that in parenting, the days are long but the years are swift. How true! Now as an empty nester, I tend to focus on those swift years. It just flew by! However, I can remember there were some long days as well.
If you have a wife who is in that “long days” phase of mothering, there are some things you can do to help. Ephesians 5 tells us husbands to love our wives as Christ loved the church. What does that love look like when our wives are in the long days of motherhood?If you have a wife who is in that “long days” phase of mothering, there are some things you can do to help: Click To Tweet
Let’s look at three ways husbands can woo the mother of his kids:
1) Recognize her. Work as a mom is often behind the scenes and therefore frequently overlooked. Easy to do, whether she is a stay at home mom, work outside the home mom, or a combination of both. The role of mom is 24/7!
When I worked at the Tennessee Baptist Convention I supervised the volunteer collegiate campus ministers across the state. As I read up on volunteerism, I discovered that volunteers need a paycheck as much as any other employee. The volunteer paycheck however comes from recognition and appreciation. So I spent a lot of time on the road taking volunteers to lunch and letting them know how special they were to our team. The response was amazing.
Whether she works outside the home or not, in her role as a mom, your wife is a volunteer. She needs a paycheck. She needs recognition and appreciation for what she does as a mom. Brag on her to the kids. Have a special family date to honor their mother. (Mother’s Day is coming up. Think of the possibilities!) Let them know how blessed they are to have a mom like her. Recognition and appreciation go a long way in encouraging a mother in the long days phase. It’s not difficult but so vital. She’s earned her paycheck and you are the one who needs to consistently pay her.Recognition & appreciation go a long way in encouraging a mom who's in the midst of caring for little ones: Click To Tweet
2) Replace her. Stay with me here. I’m not suggesting you find someone else. Rather, choose a “kid chore” that mom normally does and take her place doing it. One week it might be folding kids clothes. Another it might be doing the whole night time, getting them in bed routine by yourself while she catches her breath. This will provide a bit of relief for her. It might also give you an appreciation of what she does as a mom.
Shortly after Jennifer, our first, was born, I was somewhat envious of all the time Selma had with her as a stay at home mom. While running early one morning God told me (not audibly but clearly) that one way I could connect with our baby is to give Jen her bath on Saturday and Sunday mornings. Now I knew nothing about kids. I had the diaper-changing routine down pretty good but that was about it. So I had to learn how to give the bath. Once I got it, I bathed her, washed her hair, dried her, “new diapered” her and clothed her ready to meet the day. That was a kid chore I ended up doing all through Jen and Nat’s little years. What a joy! What a treasure to bond with them like that while giving mom some relief along the way.
3) Date her. Get her and you away from the kids for a while. That could be a walk around the block, maybe dinner and a movie. Or plan ahead, save your money and make it an overnighter once or twice a year. Be sure to get it on the calendar. This will help mom to look forward to the date or getaway while she is in the midst of mountains of laundry or dealing with diaper rash.
Our girls would often cringe and groan when mom and dad would go on a date. Deep inside their hearts, however, they loved it. It told them that mom and dad were working to make their marriage better. It was no leap for them to figure if the marriage was strong the family would be stable, too.
Husbands, fulfilling your Ephesians 5 task of loving your lady as Christ loved His bride can be quite daunting. Yet, recognizing them, “replacing” them and dating them can be part of blessing the queen of your home.
P.S. Thanks to two very special young mothers who are happily married and contributed ideas for this post. Their names are Jennifer and Natalie, our two daughters. (David and Jonathan, be sure to read this!)