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Hey there, I'm Sunny Shell, a wretch saved by God's grace through faith in Jesus Christ the Lord. I'm married to the most incredible man on earth, who loves Jesus more than he loves me, and we have two precious adult sons.

The compassionately endures me through my metabolic disease (since 2004) that enables me to be more prayerful and careful about commitments I make and helps me to make the best use of my short time here on earth.

If you want to know more about me, click HERE.

Welcome home, Daddy!


When our husband's come home from a long, hard day at work, what are they expecting? Is it what they find when they get home?

I'm often asked about being a biblically submissive wife and what does it "look like". The following,  are some of the questions that arise quite often from mothers with younger children:
  1. How can we lay a welcome mat of love for our husbands after a long day of hard work?
  2. How can we make our homes inviting places where Daddy longs to be at the end of a long day?
  3. How can we involve our children in this process and teach them to show reverence to their Daddy?

"The heart of her husband trusts her, and he will have no lack of gain. She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life."
~Proverbs 31:11-12

About fifteen years ago when I set out to becoming a Proverbs 31, biblically submissive wife, I not only apologized to my husband for the specific ungodly acts I committed against him, but I also asked him what things brought him the greatest pleasure and what things brought him the greatest grief. I thought instead of just trying to "guess" at what he wanted, it would be best to use the highest form of communication God has given mankind -- the use of language. Too often, us wives assume we know what's best for our husbands, but it's usually based on our own misconceptions that are birthed from the things that are most comfortable and preferable for us. And since I had already resolved to crucify my old, dead self and it's arrogant thinking that I knew everything there was to know about my husband, I chose to consider him first and just ask him as a sign of my love, devotion and willing submission to him and his authority. This was my way of letting him know that what he wanted not only mattered to me, but was very important to me.

"Do nothing out of rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves."
~ Philippians 2:3

I'll share a couple of things he told me:
  • When he calls me during the day, don't' complain to him about things he can't "fix". He loves me and it frustrates him to hear me stressed and know he can't do anything to help me right there and then.
  • Upon entering the house, give him just a few minutes to "wind down" from his day at work.
As I prayerfully considered what he said, I remembered the Apostle Paul's words to Philemon:

"Confident of your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I say."
~ Philemon 1:21

I so desperately wanted God to say that about me, so I ventured to do more than my husband requested and apply his "homecoming" celebration to start when he woke up!

The following are things I applied and though not perfectly, strive daily to remain faithful to:
  1. Rise when he does and have my praise and quiet time. Although we don't have our quiet time together since this is our personal time with God, I make sure I'm up as well because he enjoys just knowing I'm there too.
  2. Make him breakfast if he wants it that morning.
  3. Daily make his lunch and write him a "lovie note". In the note, I make sure I'm not preaching to him, but telling him how much I love him and appreciate him and share with him the graciousness of God I see in his life. Then I end with telling him how I can't wait for him to come home to me. I also draw hearts or other silly pictures on it. Then I make the boys their lunch.
  4. Send him "love" emails, text or phone calls just to listen to him instead of laying out a laundry list of what I'm going through.
  5. ALWAYS answer when he calls and I answer with "Hello darling, how are you?" or "Is this my favorite person?" or "Hey there boyfriend! I have a crush on you!"....well, you get the picture. And I answer this way regardless of whether I'm alone or in a crowd. I don't care how silly others may think I sound, I'm more concerned with lifting my husband up.
  6. Make it a priority to do whatever he's asked me to do first during the day and let him know the status as soon as possible, so he doesn't have to concern himself with that issue.
  7. Make a hot breakfast for the boys and start our breakfast devotional as my husband is getting ready to leave for work. We always immediately stop what we're doing and say good-bye to him and often walk him to the door.
  8. Have a hot meal prepared by the time he gets home.
  9. Make sure all my work (including housework, volunteer work, errands, etc.) are all done before I pick up the boys from school so they can have my undivided attention. I make the boys a snack, snuggle them, listen to them about their day and help them get their homework started if necessary. Sometimes, they just want me to sit in the same room with them because it makes them feel better. I do anything I can to help them settle down for the day, so they're in a better mood when Daddy gets home and are prepared to serve him and not be in need themselves. I also share with them any details of my husband's day if he's had a particularly difficult one and we all plan something special for him!
  10. Train the children to be attentive to when he arrives home, so we can all immediately stop what we're doing, run outside clapping and cheering. I get him whatever drink he prefers that day, while the kids take his lunch bag and any other thing they can carry into the house for him. Then they get him his slippers if he likes (sometime he doesn't) and I take off his shoes and socks and massage his feet for a few minutes as he tells me about his day. We put him in a recliner and I make the final touches to our dinner and we all eat at the table. Our boys are 15 (sophomore) and 13 (8th. grade) and we still do this! The welcome home celebration in the driveway tickles my husband because our oldest son is now taller than him (he's 5'11" and still growing) and still loves to clap and cheer because Daddy's home! We all love it and just crack up and laugh as we all walk in the house ready to serve Daddy and bless him beyond what he expected or ever asked for!
  11. Train the kids to ask Daddy first how his day was before anyone shares theirs. After my darling husband has shared his day, he asks about mine and the boys and they tell him all about how they worshipped our King Jesus that day and how they saw the Holy Spirit working in their lives. Once we're finished, my wonderful husband leads us in a family devotional time by reading to us and opening up discussions on how we can all better love, honor and give glory to our awesome God. Currently, we're reading C.J. Mahaney's book entitled, "Humility: True Greatness". It's on my "bookshelf" (to the right) if you'd like to find out more about it.
  12. Train the children to do the dishes and wipe down the table and all the counters so my husband and I can relax and spend some time talking. I usually use this time to get out the massage oil and give him a hand and/or foot massage (depending on his preference). I've been giving my husband massages for 16 years. And started giving him foot baths with full foot massages about 14 years ago.
Meal Preparation:
One of the things I've done to help have meals prepared on time is make a menu. I first take our family calendar and look at it before making the menu so I can decide the days I need to make slow cooked meals and the days we'll have leftovers, etc. I make a two week menu (because that's how often he gets paid). This way, I can make sure it's nutritious, economical and no food is thrown away. I then make my grocery list out of this menu, which cuts down on shopping time. Then the menu is posted on the refrigerator because everyone loves to see what we're having!

Training Children to Revere Their Father:
Since my oldest son was 2 years old, I taught both boys the Scriptures that spoke of revering and honoring their father and what happened to children in the Old Testament who didn't. I would share with them God's grace and mercy and how we don't stone rebellious sons anymore, but that was done to show the Israelites what an abomination a rebellious child was before the sight of our holy God, but what a blessing an obedient son is to his father and our God who is in Heaven. (Deuteronomy 21:18-21, Proverbs 1:8, Proverbs 3:1-12, Proverbs 19:13, Proverbs 23:24, Proverbs 28:7)

All of their lives I would spend a lot of time telling them how wonderful their father is. I've taught them how difficult and stressful his job can be, as well as share with them how hard he works for our family and we ought to be thankful. I make it a point to identify good character traits of their father I see in them. I never discuss his faults as I believe that's my husband's place, not mine. If I want to share faults or sin patterns, I share my own since I have so many to choose from and I know them better.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The thing my husband appreciates most is my commitment in becoming a biblically submissive woman based on Proverbs 31:10-31. This passion I have causes me to do all the things that would cause my husband to truly view our home as his castle...his sanctuary....a place he prefers to be above all else.

Oh, and what does my husband do with all my love notes? He tapes them to his computer monitor at work so he can be encouraged all day. As a matter of fact, I found out only because his work mates began to call him all the lovie names I used in my notes. About 20 years ago, the boys at work masculinized one of the names and that's what he still likes to use today..."with the guys".

Unfortunately, I don't always succeed at this and fail from time to time. I am a wretched woman who's a living sacrifice that often crawls off the alter to do my own will. When this happens, I apologize and ask for his forgiveness and commit to diminish the occurrences of such ugly sin that not only burdens my wonderful husband, but also grieves my awesome, holy, good and gracious Father God.

I've really been burdened this last year, because due to my health issues (which included two surgeries in 7 months), I've not be able to be very consistent in all these areas. But one thing that encourages me is that our boys have learned to love, respect and honor their father. And due to this, they have pitched in quite a bit to do many of the things I haven't been able to. Isn't our God awesome?

WARNING:
Please, please, please do not attempt to do any of these things without much preparation in prayer. If not for Christ and His resurrecting power living in me, I would absolutely NOT be able to accomplish even one of these things without resentment, judgment, fatigue, criticism, complaining and self-righteousness. Prayerfully consider all these things, empty yourself of yourself and commit to becoming a biblically submissive, Proverbs 31 wife before attempting any of these things. As Scripture says, nothing is impossible with God, but oh, there are so many a things that are impossible for us without Christ! Can I get an "Amen!"?

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2 comments:

  1. Sunny, you are a blessing! My husband and I have been married almost thirty-nine years (8/20). This is something I've put high on  my priority list. When my husband returns home at the end of the day I greet him and make sure home is a soft and inviting place to be. I'm aware of the high stress levels he deals with on a daily basis, and I want our home to be a safe haven of rest. Like you said, I'm not always successful but I am honored to do this for my husband. And like most things when we seek to serve we are so blessed in return. My husband is considerate and shows great interest in everything I do. We are truly blessed as a couple to put Christ at the head of our home.  
    Thank you for sharing this article and showing me a couple of areas I can add to my list. 
    Love you, Rita!

    ReplyDelete
  2. WOW! Praise God for giving  you and your hubby 39 blessed years in the Lord together! Happy early Anniversary sis! ♥ You're such a sweetie heart! ♥ :o)

    ReplyDelete

"If Jesus Christ be God and died for me, then no sacrifice can be too great for me to make for Him." ~ C.T. Studd
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