Whosoever finds a wife, finds a good thing, and obtains favor with the Lord. Proverbs 18:22
Looking at these words, I reflect on what this means for me as a wife and for my husband.
I am a good thing. Me! I am a good thing for my husband.
You are a good thing. YOU! You are a good thing for your husband.
Your husband finds favor with the Lord because of YOU. Being thankful for the ways that your husband receives God’s favor brings more favor. Thinking such thoughts towards your God and all that He has in store for you should bring you joy as well.
Can you recall a time when it seems that God has showed favor to your husband?
‘Joy’ is quite a complicated little word. This tiny little word can be found in the Bible more than 150 times. There are many different Greek and Hebrew words used in the Bible to convey joy. The one I want you to focus on is makarios. This Greek word means supremely blessed, fortunate, or well off. Go back to the question above one more time.
Images of joy that my mind brings are people leaping in the air and shouting as if their favorite team is winning. Wouldn’t it be something if the favor the Lord has for our husbands caused us as wives to jump and shout for joy, wouldn’t we have a permanent smile on our face to go with it? Let’s discuss favor and what it is or just as importantly, what it isn’t.
Favor is God’s reward for obedience for choosing to simply walk the path that He has laid out for you. It is when God puts into play someone in your life to help you out with no strings attached. Favor is simply God’s attitude of goodness and blessing towards you. It is not an exchange system. It is not a payment for something. Don’t confuse it with “favors” the “you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours” kind of favor. It is simply that God looks down and sees your willingness to be obedient and has a desire to bless and help you. Such blessings bring a wife great joy when they are noticed. It is something to smile about, even rejoice over, so that others see you are grateful for the blessings that bring you joy.
We are given favor according to the assignment God has placed on our lives. When you married your husband God saw that it was a good thing. God’s favor then begins to move others to help us achieve our destiny and dreams.
A merry heart doeth good like a medicine. Proverbs 17:22
Years ago in the fall I realized I was dealing with what some would call "seasonal" depression. I had never been depressed before but I felt like I as in a not so sunny place. One day in my laundry room while the washer and dryer were busy swishing and humming I was unhappily folding tiny undies and way too many towels. I broke down. I was so unhappy. I wanted more in my life than this. I wanted more money for nicer things, to get my nails done, to actually pay a beautician, new furniture, carpet cleaned from all the kid stains, and a bigger car but most of all I wanted my husband to love me. Any ladies out there feeling me on this? I knew there was more to life than the never ending story of laundry and God heard and cared about every single prayer and desire of my heart that I shared with Him. He cared even if to some those things were trivial. He cared more about the root of the prayer and what my heart truly desired.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. Romans 15:13
These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. John 15:11
I know people that have far less than I do and are happy. They are happy and very content. They are thankful with what some would consider meager. During my little break down I realized that I was not just running low on joy, I was empty. How in the world does someone refill their life with joy? I mean really? Isn't there something we can do on our own to fill that joy tank? We can’t refill our joy but God can. I prayed for God to fill me with joy. With fists in the air I asked God to fill me up, but first He wanted to show me something. He needed to show me all the blessings He had given me. He wanted me to see He cared and actually does show me favor daily. It’s my responsibility to recognize it. As always, my Gracious Heavenly Father was faithful and good.
God started revealing to me that I had so much to be appreciative of because my husband has favor with the Him and that transferred directly to our little family. Gratitude proceeded the joy. In finding my own joy through gratitude of His blessings and thanksgiving, I was able to spread that around to my husband and my children. I began to find it satisfying to fold tiny undies because my children had tiny undies. I found joy in folding towels because we were blessed with towels. I even enjoyed washing dishes because the bubbles were so beautiful. That may sound like I was taking it a bit too far, but was I really? I found the more I focused on the blessings, gave thanks for each one, the more joy I was filled with. It became the case that when I looked at my husband with joy in my heart, he extended the same favor to me. There is nothing more pleasing to a wife than to make her husband smile and laugh because he finds joy in her. It doesn't happen over night, it doesn't appear after a single prayer. What does happen in the moment we begin asking for joy, change. Something changes in our very hearts. If we keep believing that we have nothing to be thankful for then we are telling the world that our God can not do and will not do what we need of Him. He's our Daddy God. If we want joy in our lives, you better believe He's going to show you where your joy lies.
Joy must arise from a yielding to fulfill God’s great creative purpose and seeing it accomplished. This is why we are born. Matt 25:21
I started compiling a list of blessings. I wrote down everything I was thankful for and the list grew. I wrote down ways in which I could see God showing my husband favor and myself as well. The longer my list became, the greater the joy I felt. This joy was passed on to my husband. We both began to smile at each other more. It was much more quick to point out the blessings for him and I found that most of the time, he was already aware of them before I was.
Your challenge today is to begin a list. I don’t care where, how long, on what, or with what, create a list and thank God for the blessings, number your blessings, count as many as you can. I learned to do this a few years ago when I was reading 1000 Gifts by Ann Voskamp. It’s a perfectly beautiful practice to do throughout the day.
I am married to my high school sweetheart. We've been pressing ahead together for over 24 years. We have 5 beautiful children; 3 by my own body and 2 through foster to adopt. I wrote this Bible study in 2009, years ago, for myself and shared it on my blog. It is very dear to my heart. It's been tweaked and edited many times and I'm proud to be bringing it back to you. Over the years I received countless emails from women who credited this study with changing their marriage for the better. Since removing it from my old blog I have received just as many emails asking when it would return. I hope you enjoy spending your time in God's Word with me.