When thinking about wives in the Bible there seem to be more examples of bad wives than good ones. Who comes to mind as the worst wife ever in the Bible? Jezabel without doubt! I Kings 21:25, “But there was none like unto Ahab, which did sell himself to work wickedness in the sight of the Lord, whom Jezabel his wife STIRRED UP.”
The phrase “stir up” appears 45 times in the King James version of the Bible. Every wife has great influence over her husband and “stirs him up” in good or bad ways.
What are some bad ways to stir up your husband?
- Grievous words Proverbs 15:1, “A soft answer turneth away wrath; but grievous words STIR UP anger.” Years ago when Judy was just a baby, Jacinto was talking with a man in our church after a service in Mexico. The man asked Jacinto, “Why was your daughter born in the USA? You’re a Mexican. She should have been born in Mexico. You are a traitor to your country!” My husband was very annoyed. They began to argue. God gave me a few words to say, “You know, it doesn’t really matter what country you are born in. As Christians the important thing is that our citizenship is in heaven!” They both agreed with me and stopped arguing! A soft answer turneth away wrath.
- Always be irritated about something Proverbs 15:18, “A wrathful man STIRRETH UP strife; but he that is slow to anger appeaseth strife.” Little habits of your husband can drive you crazy. How many arguments have there been since the world began over leaving the toilet seat up, which way the toilet paper should hang, squeezing the toothpaste from the middle of the tube–it seems all marriage fights start in the bathroom! ha None of these little irritations are worth starting World War III over!
- Pride Proverbs 28:25, “He that is of a proud heart STIRRETH UP strife; but he that putteth his trust in the Lord shall be made fat.” A wise man who has been married over 50 years once said, “You will have a better marriage if you care more about your relationship than being right.” Always insisting you are right will not lead to marital bliss.
- Resentment Proverbs 10:12, “Hatred STIRRETH UP up strifes; but love covereth all sins.” No one gets married dreaming of having a home full of hatred and strife, but we all know it happens sometimes. Never keep mental lists of all the wrong your mate does to you. It is exhausting and leads to resentment which can lead to hatred and endless strife.
What are good ways to stir up your husband?
- Motivate him to use his talents for God’s glory 2 Timothy 1:6, “Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou STIR UP the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands.” Believe in your husband and help him believe in himself. A few years ago I asked one of our men to teach a class in our VBS. He told me he could not because of work. A few days later he came back and told me he could do it. What changed his mind? He went home and talked with his wife who encouraged him and offered to help him. They both have been faithful Sunday school and VBS teachers for many years now–all because the wife believed in her husband and motivated him to serve the Lord.
- Encourage and lift him up 2 Peter 3:1, “This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you, in both which I STIR UP your pure minds by way of remembrance.” You should be your husband’s loudest cheerleader. Ecclesiastes says that two are better than one because when one falls the other raises him back up. When your husband gets discourages, try not to get discouraged with him. It is your time to remind him of God’s promises and faithfulness in the past. Keep an Ebenezer book where you write down answers to prayer. Get that book out when discouragement comes and remind yourselves of God’s unfailing grace.
Nobody can stir up a husband like his wife can! Let’s be sure we are stirring up our husbands in good ways and not bad ways!