Valentine’s Day is coming, and let’s face it… to most of us men, it would be just another day if it weren’t for our beautiful brides. Part of Mastering Manliness is learning how to lead, pursue, and pray for our wives. And Valentine’s Day is a perfect opportunity for us put this into action.
Now many of you may be Valentine masters and already have an amazing plan. Good for you! For the rest of us, below is a plan to help each of you pursue your wife for the 14 days leading up to Valentine’s Day. IT IS NOT A SUREFIRE, TIME-PROVEN PROCESS. It’s simply an outline of suggestions that I believe could help us make our marriages stronger and more rewarding. Our goal here is for the men of Southpoint Community Church to lead the way in creating an atmosphere where the wives of our spiritual family feel celebrated and honored in the way that they should.
DAYS 1-7: FEBRUARY 1-7
Gentlemen, we begin with prayer. Prayer may be the single most important thing you do that not only paves the way for your wife to walk in God’s blessing, but to soften your heart towards her needs so you can be the instrument God uses to meet them. Below is a set of scriptures and a sample prayer for you to use to get you started. Try personalizing the scriptures and reading them out loud. Do this three times a day if possible, starting today (during your morning devotionals; on your way to work; during your lunch break; on your way home from work). YOU MAY NEED TO PUT REMINDERS IN YOUR PHONE. I do this. It works.
Also get a few of your buddies (maybe from your life group) and challenge them to do it with you. Get on the phone with them a couple of times a week and pray for your wives together. Men, there is no better masculine act you can do then to war in prayer for your wife. It’s not feminine. It’s biblical. It’s powerful. It’s our job. An SCC man will be a man marked by prayer, so just do it and get your buddies doing it with you.
SCRIPTURES TO PERSONALIZE:
Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. (Ephesians 5:25-28 ESV)
Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered. (1 Peter 3:7 ESV)
He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord. (Proverbs 18:22 ESV)
House and wealth are inherited from fathers, but a prudent wife is from the Lord. (Proverbs 19:14 ESV)
An excellent wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels. (Proverbs 31:10 ESV)
Father I thank you for __________. I have found a good thing and favor from You when I found her. Please help me to treat her like you treat me. You love me no matter what and minister to me regardless of how I am performing. Help me to love and serve __________ that way. Give her strength for her tasks and wisdom for her decisions. She is precious to me, more precious than any treasure. Help me to show her the love, respect and affection she needs to thrive in this relationship. Surround __________ with your angelic protection today, and may favor be on all she undertakes. Cancel any plans the enemy has for her and let Your will be done in her life throughout the day. Father, bless __________ beyond her wildest imaginations and release Your great love into her life without limit. Help me to be the husband and friend she needs me to be. In the name of Jesus, Amen.
Note: This is just a sample to get you started. Pray other promises of scripture over your wife and “wash her with the water of the Word.”
CHARACTER CELEBRATION LIST
Using a form of journal (phone; tablet, old fashioned paper and pencil), start a “character celebration list.” Each day, note a character strength or “characteristic” of your wife that you really admire and/or enjoy. This should leave you with seven great qualities to share with your wife later. Obviously seven is a great goal, but if your schedule gets crazy you might end up with four or five. No problem… but shoot for seven.
A great way to get a head start in pursuit is to take a few of these qualities during this first week and leave notes around the house for her to find, telling her what you admire about her.
Start thinking of the Valentine moment. Here are a few suggestions.
- If you are going out to dinner, make reservations now. Pick a place where you have never taken her. If you are on a tight budget, remember it’s not about how much you spend but the effort you put in. Do research. The easiest is to go online, find some restaurants in your price range and read the local reviews.
- Need a sitter? Better reserve that person now. An easy free solution to a sitter is to do Valentine dinner on a different night than the 14th and find a couple to watch your children and then swap and watch their children as they go out on Valentines night. My wife and I do this all the time.
- Get your card. If you’re the kind of guy who is decent at writing down your thoughts, you may want to consider writing her a letter.
- Are you doing flowers? Don’t wait until the last minute to order and definitely DO NOT pick some roses up on the way home from the guy on the side of the street. Get them delivered. You can also mix it up and get them delivered a day or so early just to mix it up.
- Is there a way to get your children involved to “Make Mom their Valentine?” Help them get ready.
- Do you have a PLAN B if sickness or weather disrupts your PLAN A?
DAYS 8-13: FEBRUARY 8-13
Start a process of intuitive listening. Listen for what is “between the lines” of her life and make mental notes. The easiest way to do this is to remember what she is telling you she is doing. She wants you to care about WHAT she is doing. DON’T FORGET OR LET IT GET LOST IN ALL THE “STUFF” YOU HAVE TO ENGAGE IN. Pray over the things she is engaging in and ask about it later that day. A great way to do this is to call her during the day and ask her how it went. Don’t text this one… call. Getting groceries, meeting one of her friends, appointments at her work, picking up the children and taking them to practice, etc. is the stuff of her life. IF POSSIBLE, DO THIS EACH DAY FOR THESE SIX DAYS.
It would be good to continue the prayer confessional from the first seven days at least once a day.
Think of a pre-Valentine surprise. Here are a few suggestions if you choose:
- Leave hand-written notes throughout the house this week for her to find. You could even stick post-it notes with short little phrases on them like “yours forever” or “love to love ya.”
- Get her a single rose and leave it somewhere with a simple note.
- Do something you normally don’t do that would be an act of affection (getting the kids bathed and in to bed, washing dishes, folding the laundry, etc.).
- Skip your favorite show or game during this week and devote your attention to her and her day.
The point is to do something for her early with no “strings” attached.
DAY 14: VALENTINE’S DAY
- If you can afford it, go out. Do something she likes and make it great.
Pick a place where you can engage in conversation. The local winghouse is a very bad idea!
- Make sure you share with her the “character list” you put together last week.
- If conversation is not your strongest attribute, here are a few conversation starters:
- Start with what’s going on in her life. Maybe it’s something dealing with her family, her workweek, the children, or her health.
- Bring up some of your favorite memories together that only you two know about and reminisce.
- Talk about what God has for the both of you in your future. Spend some time dreaming together.
- If you are low on money, you can still make a great moment. Here are some ideas:
- If you have a job that allows, go out in the afternoon. If you can make arrangements for the kids, you could even throw in a matinee movie.
- For those of you with children: devise a plan to get them taken care of and in bed so that you can take time with the love of your life to share with her the character list you put together last week.
- Go walk the beach together if weather permits. This never gets old and is always romantic.
- Flowers. Find some you can afford. This is important to almost every wife.
- Have your card ready before the actual day. Write the stuff in it she needs to hear from her man. Think through it and mean it.
- Celebrate Valentine’s Day on another day. Lots of couples do this to avoid the rush and disadvantages certain days of the week provide. If you choose this, make sure you do something special on the actual day and make her aware of your plan to “move the day.”
- Rather than do a meal and sitter, use the money to take her to her favorite store and let her spend it there and be involved. Note: this is good for some and not for others.
- Plan a candlelight meal at home.
- Just be creative and make something special happen. It doesn’t all depend on how much you spend. Put YOU into the moment in a big way.
- If none of this helps, check out How to Make Valentine’s Day Special on a Budget. Some of these are real good.
- Finally, take a lot of pictures all through the 14 days… at the very least, on Valentines Day. Then use the pics as way to remember. If you are really good, you will take pics you already have and make an “album” in your phone or other technology and use it for fun on Valentine’s Day.
I am praying that you will answer the call over these 14 days to set the standard of pursuit with your wife that is a reflection of Jesus’ pursuit of us. That Jesus would use this to reveal His will and way for each of our marriages. That it will produce great moments of connection and conversation which will lead to a strengthening of our marriages here at Southpoint and thereby pave the way for the advancement of the Kingdom of God.
We are all unique. There is no “one size fits all” way of doing this. We are all at different places in our relationships. Jesus knows just what you and what your wife need. He wants to take you wherever you are and hone you into a man with a sharp edge relationally. A man who learns to be great at leading, covering, and pursuing this gift He has given you in your wife. Let’s do this together for His glory.
Standing with you in Him,