I’ve been looking forward to August for months, and not because we’re going to the beach (tomorrow!), UGA football kicks off or James Michael starts school. (Because let’s face it, right now he’s a great help at entertaining Beau the wild man, and Mama just isn’t that interesting.) Though those are all valid reasons, I’m really ready for the routine, fellowship and spiritual learning that comes on Thursday mornings at my women’s bible study at church.
Last August, I started attending a study when Beau was only 6 weeks old. He sat beside me in his carrier or I held him in my arms for the first few weeks until he was old enough to go to the nursery. Some weeks, I only managed to finish half of the week’s lessons. I was still in the (relatively) newborn haze, figuring out life with two kids and trying my first stint as a stay-at-home mom. The study was called Wisdom for Mothers (how apt) and I learned how to dive back into the Word, gleaned some advice and met other moms with young kids like mine.
This past winter and spring, I attended a women’s study on Ruth. And though the first month was tinged with the boys’ sickness, I loved digging deep and focusing on one story for weeks. We followed it up with a Priscilla Shirer study, which I totally loved because it was reminiscent of my college days in the English department.
So, excited about another study starting this month, I read through the three study options (with childcare) available, quickly dismissing the second one called For Women Only. I narrowed it down to the other two studies, reading reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.com, and then I got that deep-in-your-gut feeling. Yes, the Holy Spirit was knocking on my door, and to be honest, I wasn’t too excited about it.
I reread the description of For Women Only and may have rolled my eyes 🙂
The man in your life carries important feelings so deep inside he barely knows they’re there, much less how to talk about them. Yet your man genuinely wants you to “get” him—to understand his inner life, to know his fears and needs, to hear what he wishes he could tell you.
I wanted to do a study to focus on me, not the feelings of my husband. I wanted to strengthen my faith, my walk, my role in this world…..hmmm.
Then I realized the thought process I was going through, and I was embarrassed. God humbled me then and there, and I realized just how much this study could bless me, bless us, bless our little family. After all, my biggest roles right now are wife and mom.
My husband is a huge part of my life, and that “til death do us part” commitment we made was no joke. Just because we haven’t hit any unnavigable rough patches in our 6+ years of marriage doesn’t mean we won’t in the decades that follow. Maybe our marriage is good now, but how could I say no to a chance to make it better? Maybe I don’t even know how much better “better” could be?
And even though I understand a lot of his line of thinking, I know there’s a lot that I don’t. And maybe sometimes I hold his man-wired way of thinking against him, consciously and unconsciously. Maybe I’m the insensitive one? So how could I pass up a chance to understand him better?
Right now, so much of our time is spent raising our kids that we often neglect each other, which I know is common, especially with young kids. But maybe focusing on him a little more wouldn’t be a bad thing. After all, isn’t the priority list ideally: God, husband, kids?
Some thought the research was great, but the book lacked tips for practical application. I’m hoping that studying this book with a roomful of other women will yield a plethora of practical applications. After all, we know how much women like to talk 🙂
I’m also hoping to share some of what I glean from this study in the coming weeks–maybe a review of the book once we finish it, or maybe a recap every week or two if I find it super helpful.
Has anyone else read For Women Only? What were your thoughts?