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Tuesday, January 1, 2019


For the sister whose husband works too much:    Listen to a man praise his wife as the most important thing in the world.

And Adam said: “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh.  She shall be called Woman because she was taken out of Man.”   (Genesis 2: 24)

See how Adam praised his wife.  He affirmed their relationship as unique.  He declared that from now on her name would include his name because no one and no thing in their whole perfect world means as much to him as she does.

Neither Adam nor Eve had biological parents, so verse 24 isn't commentary.  It's prophesy.  Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined  his wife, and they shall become one flesh. (Genesis 2: 24)

God intended for husbands to give uniquely focused attention to their wives, attention that deliberately excludes everybody else, even your daddy and your mama.

So what's up with your godly man?   How do you get him to fulfill his prophetic role of paying attention to you?   You want some of that Genesis 2 love, don't you?

Let me help you, girl.

For women, attention is a sign of affection, and indication of genuine
love.  For men, attention is a result of shared purpose and camaraderie.

Your man, his clients, and colleagues work on the same projects, fighting the same  obstacles, and impacting each others' ambitions. That why he gives them his attention.

Good men are conditioned to respond negatively to people who try to distract them from their purpose. That's why he sometimes gets angry when you ask for more of his time.  His inner Adam tells him that he's supposed to tend the garden and name the animals, or whatever God has called him to do; and he interprets your need for attention as an attempt to move him off-task.

You and he share a unique relationship, a special love. Like no one and no thing else in the whole world, you have his heart.  But to get his attention, you have to share his purpose.

Which is how God intended it.  He designed the husband-wife relationship not primarily around romance but around shared purpose.

…In the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion… (Genesis 1: 27, 28)

Our human purpose is to be productive and to multiply until the image of God has dominion over all the earth. 

For a while in Genesis 2, Adam pursued that purpose all by himself.  Adam had a set of Divine rules and two jobs well before he knew what a wife was.  He was a good man, a man who embraced his purpose and its work.

Still, the Lord said, “It is not good that man should be alone” (Genesis 2: 18).  Not good because God didn't just want a man who pursues his purpose.  God wanted a family that pursues their purpose, and so God declared, "I will make him a helper comparable to him.”

God didn't create Eve to ease Adam's loneliness.  God created Eve to share Adam's purpose.  No.  God created Eve to share in purpose with Adam.  The man of the family should lead the in fulfilling the family's purpose, but that purpose  doesn't originate from the man.  Purpose comes from God. 

Sisters, if you want your man's attention, be the one he can share his passion with.  Be the sounding board for his ideas.  Working together, articulate your mission as a family.  Be his partner in that

As his partner you can remind him that regular rest is also part of God's ordained purpose.  As his co-laborer in Divine purpose you can say, "WE need some time away from the work.  Let's (Let us) get away for a few hours or a few days."  As his partner in purpose, you can even help him schedule a romance Sabbath, when you decompress together.  You know:  date night. 

Adam recognized that he and Eve had had both been blessed with the same purpose.  She "got him." This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh. 

Therefore:  because she is one with me in my work,  I prophetically declare that I will give her my full and unique attention.

Therefore, because she is my partner in purpose I know that she knows what I'm going through.  I can share anything with her. "And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed." (Genesis 2: 25)

As it was in the beginning, so it is now.

Share his purpose, and you'll have his attention.

---Anderson T. Graves II   is a writer, community organizer and consultant for education, ministry, and rural leadership development.

Rev. Anderson T. Graves II is pastor of Miles Chapel CME Church in Fairfield, Alabama;  executive director of the Substance Abuse Youth Networking Organization (SAYNO);  and director of rural leadership development for the National Institute for Human Development (NIHD).

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Fairfield, Al 35064

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