“Live daringly, boldly, fearlessly. Taste the relish to be found in competition – in having put forth the best within you.” – James Kaiser
What do you think of when you hear the word “bold?” There are many definitions and various ways the word can be used. It’s probably not something you think of when you think of your marriage.
Bold is defined as “fearless,” “confident,” “adventurous” and “standing out prominently.” Under these definitions, boldness may seem like something that doesn’t fit well with the idea of “unity, togetherness and agreement.” It seems independent and self-centered rather than committed and selfless.
But in what ways can we, should we, be bold in our marriage?
“She smiles at the future.” (Proverbs 31:25b) Or maybe your version says “She laughs at the time to come.” Among the many attributes of the Proverbs 31 wife, she smiles at the future. Why does she smile? Perhaps she knows that you cannot trust the Lord and worry at the same time. Perhaps she knows that she need not fear the future because God is faithful to meet our needs.
There is plenty to worry about when you’re married with children, believe you me. Satan doesn’t have to make an extra effort to point out that there are bills to be paid, arguments to be avoided, food to be purchased, doctor visits to be scheduled, school books to buy, children to be raised, and future expenses to be saved for like college and retirement.
But what good am I to my family if I’m a sniveling, fretful mess? What good am I to God? How stressful would that be for my husband?? I admit there are times that I cave. But when it comes to the ups and downs of married life and parenthood… God. Will. Take Care. Of Us. Even in the valleys. So there is nothing to fear! And when I trust God wholeheartedly, fearlessly facing the future, that attitude is passed on to my children, and even to my husband.
I vividly remember standing with my children last year, our cars packed to the brim, watching a raging fire that burned within a mile of our home before it was extinguished, gripping their little hands in mine and listening to the panic rising in their voices: “It’s going to be okay. God will take care of us.” Turning to my husband who repeated those words to them: “We will be okay. God will take care of us.” I have seen firsthand that like fear is contagious, so can fearlessness rub off on those around you.
There’s a difference between being arrogant or proud and being confident. There’s also a difference between being confident in our own strength and ability, and being confident in who we are through Jesus Christ.
On my own, I’m lazy, weak, whiny, argumentative.. shall I go on? None of these traits evoke feelings of confidence in the kind of wife and mother I am. In truth – on my own, I am not the best wife or mom, not even close! And if I seek to find my identity and my confidence in my own abilities alone, I will come up short and be disappointed every single time.
Fortunately, I have a helper, a comforter, to convict and guide me. I have a savior to strengthen and enable me. I have a sovereign God to mold me and change me as I give myself over to him to be molded and shaped. IF I listen, follow, and give myself over to be molded and shaped. In THIS, I can be confident.
I could choose to embrace my flaws and say “This is just the way I am, like it or not.” I would probably not stand a chance of being the kind of wife that I want to be if I did that. And I certainly would not be honoring my marriage or my faith by doing so. Instead let me echo Hebrews 12 when I say, “let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith.”
Okay, that may not exactly be how Webster put it, but when I think of bold colors that stand out, or bold flavors that collide on your tongue – I think, “spicy, flavorful, fun.”
Seriously, how would our husband and kids respond if we made a point to be a little more spicy? How would they react if we started living with a little more flavor and fun?
How many of you, like me, tend to get caught in the day to day routine? How many of you have a hard time saying “yes” to fun things, just because it wasn’t in your plan or you’re tired or any number of other excuses? Please tell me I’m not alone on this? I’m not just talking about the kids here, either! Put down the book/phone/laptop and take an impromptu afternoon nap/shower/drive/date with your husband just because he asked you. Spending time together is so important. It doesn’t have to be big, flashy, expensive..we don’t have to give in to every fun whim..but we can’t stifle our relationship under a mountain of To Do’s and excuses, either.
Be the thermostat.
I could keep going, I could come up with more. But I decided to focus on these three. I remember reading in the Power of a Praying Wife over a decade ago, that the wife is often the thermostat of the home. That the wife (unlike a thermometer which is affected BY the temperature) has the ability to SET the mood in her home by intentionally setting her spiritual thermostat.
We aren’t responsible for everyone else’s mood. We can’t control the others around us. But we can influence them. By setting a calm, trusting, confident, patient, fun-loving mood in our own hearts, we may be able to spread the same attitudes to those around us.
In what other ways would you say that we can be “BOLD” as wives for the good of our marriage and home? I’ve only listed a half dozen bible verses here, but there were so many others I could have shared. Do you have a verse that you would have included here? Leave a comment or link up your own post below. The rules are simple: Share an encouraging post about marriage and link it with a direct url link to your post. This week’s word is BOLD. Next week’s word is CONTENT. God bless!
P.S. It just so happens (like there are any coincidences?) that my husband and his brother chose “Boldness” as the first topic of their online bible study video. You might find that interesting? I apologize in advance. The Oliver boys are a special breed. ;0)