Loving A Woman

Since high school, Josh longed to love a woman, marry someday and have a family. Like a bunch of his peers, he was sometimes awkward in relating to girls. As much as he tried to say the right things, he’d stumble on his words, catch a few giggles from the girls in his presence, and then turn a shade or two of red as he tried to regain his composure. Josh loved Jesus and coupled with his handsome factor, made him the talk of the girls in his social circles. Josh wasn’t totally aware of such as he had his own hassles to work through. His parents had a rocky marriage and between that and an older brother who struggled with substance abuse, Josh did what he could to follow Jesus and make sense of his life.

During College

Josh got to know a cute girl through a campus ministry. Cheap dates like picnics on the campus lawn and walks around town helped them explore more of who each other was and whether they were made for each other.  One time while on a picnic date at a nearby park, Josh complimented Sarah on her looks and her heart. What was unexpected were her responses.  “You say I am cute, but can’t you see how ugly I am? I am fat, and for as long as I can remember it’s been this way.”  Josh was caught off guard. “You are cute, beautiful, Sarah, and I see it in your heart.”  Josh wondered where all this was coming from. By now, Sarah was crying. Josh grabbed a tissue and offered her his arm around her shoulder.

Wounded Words/ Longing Questions

Like a lot of us guys who grew up with some sort of emotional wounds, so do girls. In his book “The Heart of a Warrior”, author Michael Thompson takes one chapter and shows us how to love a woman. 

Four questions every woman is asking of her man:

1. Do you see me?  She wants to be seen and known by her beloved.

2. Do you delight in me? She is designed to offer beauty.

3. Do you love what you see? She longs for romance.

4. Do you want to be with me? She desires to play an essential role in the larger Story.

In each of these God-ordained questions, the Enemy tries to twist them into lies. That no one sees her, no one delights in her, no one loves what they see in her, and probably the hardest one of all, no one wants to be with her.  

Signs of a Wounded Heart

Wounds lead to wounded words. If you hear these words come out of a woman’s mouth, they are direct signs they are wrestling with unhealed wounds. In his book, Michael Thompson continues with a list of words and phrases that indicate a woman has a wounded heart.

  •  I don’t have anything to offer.
  • I am stupid.
  • I am fat
  • I am ugly
  • I am unlovable
  • I don’t fit in
  • Nobody wants me
  • Why even bother? It won’t be right; it won’t be good.

Now, if a guy is solid in his character, he will want to not only NOT fuel those lies but will want to do his part in helping her heal. Word to the wise: don’t fix her. I know we guys like to fix things. It’s how we are wired. But fixing is the last thing she wants from you. 

Ways to Help Her Wounded Heart

Thompson walks us through some key steps in loving a woman.

  1. Pursue healing for yourself.  Not that you have to fix yourself first, but being in an ongoing healing relationship with Jesus, helps you love her from a place of strength and not out of your lacking. I am not healed completely from my emotional wounds, but I am in a far better place than where I used to be.  Christ is meeting me in my place of need, and that places me in a better position to love my wife.
  2. Be curious about her heart. If sports and outdoor stuff excite you more than her heart, you are the one who needs realignment. Loving a woman means she is the most attractive person on the planet to you.  And, I’m not talking just looks. Her entire mind, and soul should intrigue you. She captures your heart and you are more curious about her than anything in the universe!
  3. Invite her.  Not just on a date, but into the larger story of God that you are pursuing. Ask her to be a part of something bigger than you or the two of you combined. 
  4. Allow her to be wherever she is. She might not be as far along emotionally as you hoped, but let her be where she is, knowing that God is still writing his story in her. Recently, my wife suffered from breast cancer. A radical mastectomy has changed life for her and me forever. It takes time for the soul to catch up with the body’s changes. Giving grace is key to allowing her to be wherever she is. 
  5. He’s got her. God has her and it is your role not to fix, but to engage. Be aware of the deeper things going on beyond what you see and hear. 
  6. Fight for her. If you are her man, you should be the number one person on the planet who will defend her, doing all you can to fight for her. For her victories, for her hope and love. Early in our marriage, I had to draw some strong boundaries around our relationship so that intruders would not steal our affections. She needs to know you will fight for her. 
  7. Accept her invitation. Enter her world. If she invites you into a conversation, stop what you are doing and enter in. My wife loves movies. One weekend I told her I’d like to see a movie with her. She listed four options. I picked the one with more affection and romance. She invited me in and I accepted. We had a great time!

Loving a woman is about seeking her heart and inviting her into a larger story than just the two of you. Every woman longs to be known, loved, romanced, and invited into something greater. When she is not pursued, you hear those wounded words come out of her soul.

How can you use these tips from Michael Thompson’s book, “The Heart of a Warrior” and love a woman well?

Warrior On!

David Riffel is the Founder and Executive Director of Having gone through his warrior years (18-30) essentially without a mentor, God has placed in him a heart for warriors, to come alongside them in various ways as they figure out life. David’s newly released book, Mentoring Warriors: Coming Alongside Young Men 18-30, outlines principles for mentoring and gives advice for warriors in six key areas of life: self-management, life skills, education/career, relationships, faith, and identity.

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