Monday, June 10, 2013

What a Man! What a Man! What a Mighty Good Man! by Tammy Jones

     When asked to write for this blog, I became overwhelmed. The door was left wide-open concerning the topic, which caused me to really wonder what direction I should take.  I, by no means, claim to be a voice of wisdom; but, one thing’s for sure, being the mom of six kids, ages four to seventeen, I can be a voice of experience.  Combine that voice of experience with an innate sense of twisted humor and lack of self-dignity, and you just may have an article that could offend, entertain, or encourage.  It is my hope that the few thoughts I share will do the latter, encourage. 

     It took five years of walking the road of infertility before I arrived at my destination of motherhood; and, boy, when I arrived I “moved in” and settled myself for a long stay!  Sometimes I wonder what God must have been thinking when he gave six souls the task of calling me mom.  Either, he is really trying to teach me some profound life lessons (it’s obvious I am a very slow learner), OR he has a huge sense of humor and said, “Here is this naïve child of mine, Tammy Jones, who just so happens to believe the ‘blessed is the full quiver’ part!”  Well-meaning people tried to stop me from having (birthing and/or adopting) so many children; but, being “spiritually stubborn,” I marched onward.
     I know I seem to be taking a lot of the credit for the growth of our family, but rest assured that my husband is very much in the picture.  It’s just that he did not hear the “drum” as loudly as I did.  You know…the drum that caused me to march to a different beat.  He says he’s glad he answered the call of my “heart beat”, but there are days we are both so tired I wonder what I’ve gotten this wonderful man into and why he, originally a two-kids-are-enough kind of guy, would agree to take such a crazy journey with me?  The sacrifices he has made, and will continue to make, financially, physically and spiritually to support six children is out of the world.  Speaking of out of this world, I recognize that the love my hubby has, is absolutely from another world.  This other world is, of course, Heaven, The Kingdom of God, the place where God dwells.  It’s surely not from this old world.  This present-day world would not promote such self-sacrifice.  It seems that almost everyday I hear of fathers walking out on their wives and families, trading in the chaos of a worn-out wife and demanding children for the peace found in drugs, another’s arms, work,…well, you just fill in the blank.  In all honesty, I couldn’t blame my hubby for hitting the road, but he hasn’t.  He, for certain, is NOT staying around for my cooking, my cleaning or my sexiness because, in case you missed it, I HAVE SIX KIDS! I have failed in all those areas.  Lord knows he isn’t sticking around because I am such a gentle spirit, either.  Truthfully, I’ve really tried to talk and act like Mrs. Duggar on the TV show, 19 Kids and Counting, but even hubby couldn’t deny that the sweet, high-pitched voice thing she’s got going on (and that I envy so much) wouldn’t work for me.  
     To add to the list of disappointments my husband could hold against me are my personal, failed business and career attempts, the estrangement of a couple of his relatives that I have personally managed to offend so thoroughly that they no longer speak to us, and the serious issue I have with buying puppies, which I “re-home” when they start driving me crazy.  Ok, ok, I think you get the picture.  My hubby is a saint, and we are all wondering why he sticks around.  (Maybe a side benefit of this entry could be that you share it with your husbands, and they become more thankful for you.) 

     Ultimately, my main purpose is to share from the experience of my life, so here it goes.  (Drum roll, please!)  If you have a God-fearing family man for a husband, thank the Lord above, and then make your hubby your life-long project of love.  The best thing we can do for our children, whether we have one or 19 kids, is to put our marriage first.  Do I do this all the time?  Heck no!  But a funny thing happened as I was writing this article for YOU.  I suddenly realized I was writing it for ME!!! With Father’s Day right around the corner, let us, the women blessed with amazing husbands, be more than just mindful of our children’s fathers.  I invite you to join me in renewing your love and dedication to the best gift on earth, a godly soul mate.  This world has many alluring things to offer our men.  If our husbands decide to be man enough to resist temptation and stay in the sometimes chaotic and thankless position of husband and father, we ought to be more than a blessing to them in every area that we can. 
     Ladies, please hear this squeaky voice of experience.  In the long run, putting your marriage first is the best gift you can give your husband, your children, yourself and, ultimately, this world.  This is not the most popular message of the day; and, to be honest, I bucked it in my “more-power-to-the-woman” days.  Listen…let them (whoever they are) keep their power.  I prefer to keep my man.  If you have a good one and you are a smart woman, you will too.  Talk about power, the ability to stay married and in love requires a powerful amount of strength and determination.  It’s an uphill battle, but it’s worth the fight.  Let’s go for it, women of God! 
     This is not to suggest that women, alone, can keep a marriage together.  Some of us may have lost marriages through no fault of our own, but many of us may recognize that we have given our men more reasons to leave than to stay. So, if you have found yourself in the same place as I, scratching your head as to why he stays, then let’s make a change for the better.  If you’re not quite sure how to do this, take advantage of the many helpful Christian resources out there.  One secular resource I would recommend is the book, “The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands,” by Dr. Laura Schlessinger.

Ladies, be blessed; and, in turn, be a blessing.

Tammy Jones

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