What does it mean to encourage someone? A pat on the back? A little cheering up? A simple “way to go, good job?”

While these things can be encouraging, what does it mean to REALLY encourage someone?

Merriam-Webster says that to encourage is to “inspire with courage, spirit or hope,” to “spur on,” or “to give help to.” When I think about inspiring and spurring on, I think about more than just a pat on the back, don’t you think? When I think about encouraging my husband, all I know is that I really want to do a good job at it.

I’m sure this is not an exhaustive list, but I can encourage my husband by:

~ not saying anything negative thing about him (to him or anyone else.)

~ listening to his ideas, plans and thoughts

~ SAYING THANK YOU (don’t take him or anything he does for you and the kids for granted.)

~ doing my best as a wife, mom, homemaker (because he’s worth the effort.)

~ praying for him!

I think we can also say that if we try to be a positive person, thinking positively, dwelling on good things, then we will probably be a more encouraging person overall.

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8

And to take my first point further, more than just not talking bad about our husbands, but if we guard our speech overall, avoiding that which tears down and striving for that which builds up, surely this will also contribute toward a more encouraging attitude.

“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. ” Ephesians 4:29

I’m not sure what else to add, I’m sure I’m not thinking very clearly! (I asked Big Daddy what to add but he shrugged.) ;0) I did a little looking online and found a 30 Day Challenge to encourage your husband from Beth Moore at Revive Our Hearts. If this is something you’re interested in, it looks like a good place to start.

I know this is short, I want to *encourage* you to step in and discuss this with me. Throw out some suggestions and ideas and questions. How can we be encouraging to our husbands without nagging or pushing? What do you do to be a positive, inspiring influence?

If you would like to join in, the rules are simple. Link up an encouraging post about marriage with the direct url to the post. Next week’s word is “Forgiving.” Join us then for more Marriage Monday!

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Hey, y’all! I’m Amber and I wear many hats. I drink a ton of coffee and I’m constantly sweeping crumbs off the floor. After 18 years of homeschooling, I’m getting close to graduating my third child and now we are starting over at preschool with our fourth, Lil Miss Mouse. She keeps us young and she’s the main reason for my excessive coffee consumption. Drink up!