Have you ever listened to various groups of people talk? Listen to a group of old people for very long and inevitably you start hearing conversations about various physical ailments. Men? It doesn’t take long for the talk to become sports oriented. Women? Well if they are married, once they finish discussing the kids and/or grandkids, often the talk turns to their husbands. And very often the talk is not at all positive. Complaints, derisive humor, anger and disdain often pepper these conversations.
Surely, that’s not what God intended for our conversations about our marriages to become? Yet, women believe they have a right to criticize and complain. And honestly, many of them are at least partially right. Their husbands are not at all acting the way God intended for husbands to act. Yet even when that is true, I don’t think the Bible condones our constant complaining and whining about our husbands.
Many godly women have promised themselves to stop criticizing their husbands in public and pray for them instead. Yet without even realizing it, often our prayers for our husbands end up being sessions when we beg God to “make” our husbands what we want them to be. The idea God has a plan for our husbands that may not match up exactly with what we have in mind, rarely occurs to us.
Sharon Jaynes saw what praying for a man could do. She saw her prayers for her father answered as he eventually turned towards God and away from destructive behavior. Jaynes had also seen the effect her prayers had in the life of her husband. She wrote Praying for Your Husband from Head to Toe to help other women learn how to pray for their husbands without trying to control God and their husbands in the process.
Normally, I don’t like books with written prayers. I find them stilted and often a little flowery in their language. I really appreciated them in this book though. Jaynes breaks down prayers for husbands into sixteen areas. She connects each of these areas to a part of the body to help make them memorable.
The first part of the book explains each of the areas and why Jaynes believes it is important to pray for each of them for your husband. The second part of the book consists of thirty days of guided prayer. Each day covers all of the body parts. Each body part has a scripture and her suggestion of what to pray to connect the scripture and what your husband needs prayed about him to God.
Jaynes is careful to encourage readers to use their own words in their prayers. She offers her ideas as mere models to help the reader. Perhaps because of that, her language is less stilted than many “book” prayers. Her suggestions encourage the reader to pray in a godly way for her own husband. She demonstrates how to pray for your husband, instead of praying God fixes your husband.
Some will question the value of this book. I do believe God does not take away our husband’s free will just because we begin praying for him. I also believe God can cause things to happen that will encourage our husbands to choose to grow and change as God would want them to do.
There are no guarantees anyone’s husband will change because they prayed the prayers in this book. I have a few friends who have what I would consider less than ideal spouses. They have found that when they actively pray for their husbands (even if their husband does not change) their own attitude towards their husband changes.
My only major criticism of the book is found mainly in the later part. Jaynes has additional sections for special prayers covering special circumstances. I found it disappointing that as careful as she appears to be with scripture in the rest of the book, she skips right over the command to be baptized for the remission of your sins and encourages women to pray their husbands pray Jesus into their hearts. Had she been more accurate in that all important section of the book (praying for your husband to become a Christian), I would have rated this book an entire star higher.
In spite of my concerns for women who may need the conversion material, I do think the rest of the book has a lot of value for most women. In my opinion, prayer can only help your husband and your marriage. God won’t take away your husband’s free will and make him your minion, but God can and does work in wondrous ways every day.
I think it is worth following her thirty day plan and see how God works on your heart as well as what happens in the life of your husband. Try it for thirty days and let me know what happens. I would love to hear about your experience.I received this book for free from the publisher in return for my honest review. I plan to start using the book to pray for my husband in a more organized way.