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When Words Wound: How to Build or Break Your Husband: Ann Wilson

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine
The Truth Network Radio
March 12, 2024 5:15 am

When Words Wound: How to Build or Break Your Husband: Ann Wilson

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine

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March 12, 2024 5:15 am

Maybe your husband's buried in his phone. Lost in work. Clueless about household chores. It's tempting to want to fix him, right? But what if all that nagging is doing more harm than good? Ann Wilson has been there, done that. She's got wisdom to share about the freedom that comes when we let go of the constant nagging.

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I'm folding close and I start thinking and complaining about Dave. He's never home. He's not going to be home tonight.

He's not going to put the kids to bed. He's not here. I'm going through all that thing. And I felt like when I was on this journey, when God was getting my attention, I felt like He said, what would happen if you prayed as much as you complained?

I thought I've never tried that because I was so in the habit of going down this rut of complaining about Dave in my head. Welcome to Family Life Today, where we want to help you pursue the relationships that matter most. I'm Shelby Abbott, and your hosts are Dave and Ann Wilson.

You can find us at familylifetoday.com. This is Family Life Today. You get to hear a message from one of my, my, not one of my, my favorite speaker in all the world. And it's my wife who's sitting right beside me.

Ann Wilson, when you get to speak to the women on the boat. Well, there's something about when women get away, they all get together. We just have a chance to pause. Just to take a breath and to listen to God's word. And there's something about that, that the Holy Spirit has a chance to move. And we can hear from God. I'm not saying that what I said was like, so incredible, but there is, no, there's something that happens when women are together. We can connect to God together.

Yeah. And I'll just say this, if you're listening to this, you're like, I want to be on that boat next year. We had a men's talk as well, where just the men were together and all the rest were the couples. Sign up right now for Love Like You Mean it 2025 at familylifetoday.com. And I'm telling you, you better sign up.

Cause it'll, it'll fill up quick, but these are the kind of messages you will get to hear. So here's Ann Wilson from this past cruise. I'm going to take you back to a story maybe some of you have heard, but for me, have you ever had those moments in life as this moment in life changed everything? Like it changed everything in my present and my future.

It will continue to do that. So go back with me in time. I'd probably be married 15, 20 years. Dave and I were speaking at our church. Some of the women came to me and said, could you come and speak to our moms and our women in this, this group?

I'm like, I would love to. Do you want me to bring Dave? He's the pastor of the church. He founded the church.

They all love him. They're like, yes, bring Dave. And so I was, I told Dave, like, what should we speak about?

What do you want to talk about? He goes, I don't know, let's just get up there and wing it, which I'm like, we're going to wing it? Like, what does that even mean? And so we're sitting on these two stools at this church and Dave, he gets going and he's animated and I'm listening and he says this to the women and then like he's sitting here, but then he stands up and he gets right in front of the women. He goes, I don't even know if you women get what it's like for us as men, because growing up, someone basically looked at us and cheered for us, like, oh, look at my son, look at my boy or look at him. And so they're cheering for us. And then he says, and then we get older, we get in school, we find kind of our niche of what we're good at. And so we have a teacher or a coach or a musician.

Someone said, hey, you are good at this. And they start cheering for us. And I'm sitting back here thinking he has never said anything like this ever in our lives. And he goes, and then I got older, I played college football. And so on Saturdays, I had a stadium of people cheering for me, like Dave Wilson, you're the man, you're the man. And I'm like, yeah, I never thought of that.

That's good. And he goes, and then I married Ann. And she basically, no, she looked at me and she said, before we got married, Dave Wilson, I choose you and you are the man. And she's just like, yes, I'm sitting back here like, yes, I did.

I did do that because you are the man. And then he gets quiet and the women are like, okay, what's next? He goes, and then we get married. And I walk through the house, I walk into the door at the end of the day, and all I hear is boo, boo, boo. I don't even know what just happened. I was like, what are you talking about? I don't even know how we ended that entire talk. I don't even know because first, I was so humiliated. Second, I was like, I don't boo you. And so that was going on in my head.

So then we get in the car. I turned to him. I was embarrassed. I was like, that's not right.

I turned to him like, you think I'd boo you? I am helping you. And he turns to me and goes, and it just feels like I can't do anything right. You have to tweak it. You have to fix it.

You have to maneuver it. You have to do all the things because I'm not doing it right. And so you have to fix me. And I said, I know. I'm not kidding. That's exactly, I said, I see everything.

And while everybody at church is like, oh, Dave, you are, oh, you're so amazing. I see it all. And I can help you to be better.

I can help you. And he goes, Ann, is it working? I said, no, it is not working. And so I have to yell louder. I have to say things more mean. I have to like get your attention.

And he goes, but it's not working. I said, I know. And so, okay, this whole thing, I really thought I am the Holy Spirit's helper. The Holy Spirit's a helper, but I'm also the helper. And so here's what was going through my mind. And maybe you have felt this too. It felt like I could help him and I didn't want to verbally affirm him.

This is so messed up in my logic. This kind of says who I am. I didn't want to cheer him or affirm him because I thought if I do that, he'll think I'm satisfied and then he'll get worse. It's like enabling him to be bad.

And plus everybody else is cheering for him. His head will get even bigger if I say anything positive. And so I'm trying to go through this whole thing. We end up getting home and I say to God, I'm all by myself and I go into this little corner of my room. I sit on the floor and I say, Lord, can you believe he said that?

But then I ask the question, Jesus, do I boo Dave? We are listening to a message that my wife Anne gave on the Love Like You Mean It marriage cruise just a few weeks ago. And let me tell you, I sort of snuck in there a couple of times and that room was silent. They were engaged with what you were saying. And I could just feel how God was working in that room. And I hope, man, I hope our listeners are like, I got to be a part of that next year and sign up for the Love Like You Mean It cruise. I just even get emotional thinking about that day I'm sitting alone on the floor thinking about me as just a young wife, feeling what I felt sitting on the floor, asking God that question because I was so convicted and I felt like God was speaking truth to me.

Yeah. And, you know, the truth is I was there. It was not a good time in our marriage. And I've lived the result of God speaking to you. It's transformed our marriage both for how I speak to you with words of life and how you speak to me. And you've made me the man I am today.

So the fact that the women get to hear that and hopefully go home and live, that was pretty exciting. And I think I just need to encourage the women that are listening that are feeling that need to go before God or maybe asking similar questions right now. I would encourage you to sit before God and ask him that question and maybe some other questions. God, do I boo my husband? I am encouraging you to do that. Like, don't wait. Ask him for wisdom because he'll give it to you.

He will meet you right where you are. I agree. And let's jump back in and hear Ann's message on the cruise.

Jesus, do I boo Dave? And in my spirit, I felt like he said yes. And so I've been on a journey and I'm telling you, I'm still in recovery because any day I could slip back, slip back, slip back. But I've learned a lot since that time.

And I want to share with you some of the things that I've learned. Let's go back to the book of Genesis. And in Genesis 2 18, this is the woman being created. It's our purpose.

It's who we are. And so when you look at Eve being created, it says this, The Lord God said, It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.

And I think I've shared this here before, but when Dave and I started speaking for the Weekend to Remember conferences, we teach this. And I remember getting to this part of the scripture and I thought, I'm out because I don't want to be that helper. And here's what I really thought. Why do I have to be the helper? Like, where's my helper?

You know what I mean? Because it doesn't say that Adam, you know, he's a helper. It says we're, the woman is a helper. And I was so mad at that. And so I know that it's Genesis written in Hebrew, the Old Testament's Hebrew.

And so I decided, I'm like, before I get into Hebrew, I'm just going to see what Webster's dictionary says. And it says, A gopher, a person who does the dirty work, someone important tells them what to do. I'm like, see, that's exactly why I don't want to be the helper. And so I was telling Dave, like, how frustrating is that?

Why can't you be my helper? And we were going through this whole thing. And he said, you need to look it up in Hebrew.

So I did that. A few years ago, I did a study by Christy McClelland. Has anyone done Jesus and Women?

It's one of the best studies I've done. She is a professor. She's a Hebrew culturalist. And she went over and studied in Israel for a while. And so she talks in her Bible study.

And you've probably heard some of this from other teachers. But those words, helper suitable. Eve is to be a helper suitable.

We as wives are to be a helper suitable for our husbands. So it's not the gopher, the person who does the dirty work, but many times in scriptures, God is referred to as the helper. In fact, if you look at the scripture, I'm going to take you down to Deuteronomy 33.7. Do you know that these are the last words when Moses was praying over each tribe of Israel? He prayed this over Judah, and this was his prayer. And this he said about Judah.

Hear, Lord, the cry of Judah. Bring him to his people. With his own hands he defends his cause.

And this is the part. Oh, be his help against his foes. Be his azer. That word helper means his azer. Be his azer against his foes. So imagine you being your husband's azer or helper against his foes.

That makes it really different. Psalm 71 says, make haste, O God, to deliver me. Oh, Lord, make haste to azer me, or help me. This is God. This is like the warrior God coming to help his people.

And then also in Proverbs 75, it says, but as for me, I am poor and needy. Come quickly to me, O God. You are my azer and my deliverer.

Lord, do not delay. And so as we look at that word helper or azer, I like those terms because I am helping Dave in battle. And one of the things Christy McClellan said when she was over in Israel, she said that she got to know a rabbi who was in his late 70s.

He had a long white beard. And she said, Rabbi, when you look at these words helper suitable or azer kenedgo, what do you think it means for the wife, for Eve, for us as women today? And here's what he said. He said, Oh, Christy, God knew there was an enemy in the garden, and it would take two of them together to defeat the enemy.

Isn't that good? And I don't know if you've thought about this in a while, but you're experiencing this. There is a battle going on for our marriages. There is a battle going on in our culture for marriage between a man and a woman.

And I'm telling you that there's a battle raging over you and your marriage. And it takes us together to battle. And then that word kenedgo.

I had never heard of that word, kenedgo. Do you know what it means? It's never used any other time in scriptures, but it describes the woman and it means toe to toe. She will stand toe to toe.

Some of you are smiling because you're like, Oh yeah, I can do that. I will stand toe to toe. But I think about us as women, even the way we're protective of our people, of our children. We will stand toe to toe.

But isn't that an interesting when you think of the battle going on in the in the garden, it would take them standing together, fighting the enemy together and the enemy. What's his goal? To steal, kill and destroy you and your marriage. And so what does it feel like? What does it look like to be that azer kenedgo? We're listening to Ann Wilson's message on the Love Like You Meet It cruise. Sounds so weird. Sounds weird to talk about you sitting right here, but you were fired up in that part of your message talking about azer kenedgo where, you know, you're the partner to your man to fight the enemy in your marriage.

I think I'm so fired up because this was new to me. I didn't grow up in a Christian home and what I thought Christian women were supposed to be were doormats. Like some man will just walk all over her, tell her what to do or fetch things for your husband. But this is a vital component for women to understand that we're to stand beside and with and around our husband in battle to fight the enemy, to protect our families, our husbands protecting them. But we, as women, were there beside him helping to protect. Yeah, I mean, really, we're soldiers together, comrades in battle. And often we think the fights between ourselves, but it's not between a husband and wife.

It's a husband and wife teamed up to fight the real enemy, which you're talking about. So let's go back and let's hear the end of this message. So to get the marriage you want, getting the marriage you hope for, it starts first in your mind and in your thoughts. And so that day that I came home and I got down on my like sitting before God, when I said, God, do I boo Dave? And I felt, yes, I had this impression and I felt like God was saying, keep track of your thoughts.

Start just taking track of how you think about Dave. I would challenge all of you to start thinking, what are your thoughts about your husband? And I'm going to say this because I had to do this with my kids too.

What are your thoughts about your kids? And I would just like spin out of control with my thoughts. I think I've shared this one time. I was doing the laundry one time and I had just gotten in this habit pattern.

You know how they're talking about brain science now and how when you keep thinking a certain way, you create a neurological pathway. I'm folding close and I start thinking and complaining about Dave. He's never home. He's not going to be home tonight.

He's not going to put the kids to bed. He's not here. I'm going through all that thing. And I felt like when I was on this journey, when God was getting my attention, I felt like he said, what would happen if you prayed as much as you complained?

That I thought, I've never tried that because I was so in the habit of going down this rut of complaining about Dave in my head. And recently we had on an author, Ted Lowe. He wrote the book Us in Mind. And in his book, he has a lot of the brain science information.

I'm kind of fascinated by this because God works in this way and I feel like God's even revealing more to us. Here are some of the things Ted said. Here are the stats. According to the National Science Foundation, people on average have about 12,000 to 60,000 thoughts per day. 80% of those thoughts are negative. And 95% of those thoughts are repetitive.

Wow. And then he says this. Here are some examples of negative thoughts that are common. Why should I try? My spouse never tries. I'm not the one who needs to change. He needs to change.

I'm just not attracted to him. Divorce is not uncommon. It's the right option for us. Marriage is an outdated institution.

Who needs it? And I put that here are my thoughts. Here are the things that I kept going over and over and over. I do everything around here. I said it the other day.

I do everything around here. I'm his last priority. I'm not seen or appreciated. He's so selfish.

He doesn't appreciate me. And so here's my challenge. What are your thoughts?

Like, do you get down this rut where you're thinking negatively? And then it says this. I thought this was really interesting. Happily married couples focus on what they love about their spouse. This is from Dr. Helen Fisher.

So did you hear that? Happily married couples focus on what they love about their spouse. She reported that a commonality in these marriages was positive illusion.

I thought that word was interesting. Illusion. Positive illusion is the ability to focus on what you love about your spouse and not focus on what you don't. This ability results in higher marital satisfaction, less conflict, higher sense of security, and lasting intimacy. They look at their spouse and see awesomeness.

Okay. I just have to say, like, I'll say that. I feel like I've said this over the years, and I've had people, women, come up to me and say, so there is nothing to cheer about my husband. Like, if you knew him, there is nothing to cheer.

One woman said, so do you want me to be a Hollywood actress? Like, I'm just going to, like, fake it and pretend that he's good? And I'm like, no. There was a time that you saw the greatness in him, didn't you? Like, you saw the good.

You weren't in the rut. You were seeing the good in him. And then you would probably say it. And so I would say this.

If you're not seeing the good and you're in the rut of seeing all the bad, start saying the good things that you used to believe in him. They're still there. You're just not seeing them. And she also says this in this Helen Fisher. Unhappily married couples focus on what they don't love about their spouse. They are frustrated because the differences cause them not to get where they want. This mental frustration can become a dangerous mental game called confirmation bias.

Confirmation bias is the tendency to interpret new evidence as confirmation of the beliefs we already hold. Simply put, you find what you are looking for. Isn't that interesting? I thought that was fascinating. As I was dealing with all this and figuring it out, we're having lunch one day. When we have people in for radio podcasts, we have lunch with them.

So this one particular day a few months ago, we're in this room and I'm looking around the room. There's four people that have theology degrees and one has his doctorate. I wrote down his name, but it was so interesting because I was telling him and talking to them about this Ezer Kenedgo.

And so I'm thinking with all these guys and women with their theology degrees, we're going to hear some really good stuff. And so I'm not finding it right now, his name, but this doctor, super smart guy, like genius kind of person, I said, what do you think Ezer Kenedgo means? And he sat for a while and he knows Hebrew really well. And he said, Ann, I really think it means when a husband stands toe to toe with his wife and he looks into her eyes, he sees the man he could become.

Think about that. When your husband looks into your eyes, he sees the man he could become. If Dave would have looked into my eyes back in those days that I am a superior mover, what he would have seen in my eyes is a failure, a person that doesn't measure up, a bad dad, a bad leader, someone who doesn't lead spiritually.

What's he going to rise up to if that's what I see in him? We've been listening to my favorite all time speaker of all history. Her name is Ann Wilson, and she's sitting right here beside me because she's my wife. And man, you were not only excited to give that talk, but very emotional as you gave it. And even as you close, I mean, as you were wrapping up with almost a thousand women sitting in there, what were you hoping? I'm just imagining what our marriage would be like had I not changed. I thought the problem was you.

And I thought the problem was you. Had I not started seeing how God made you and the great things God put into you. And I never told you how great you were. And it's not that I didn't say negative things, too. But if I would have closed my mouth and didn't see you the way God saw you, I think we'd been a very different place right now.

Oh, I know we would. And I think the room was so quiet and locked in because the Holy Spirit was speaking to women who are still doing what you had done for decades and sort of speaking death and critique. And I needed critique. I needed the truth. But what you said there about A's or connect, though, when a man, a husband looks in his wife's eyes and sees the man he can become.

That's what I see now. I see you believe in me. You affirm me. You see me as a great man of God, a husband, even a dad and now a grandfather. And it motivates me to be even greater as a man in all those areas because you believe in me. And that inspires me. That's how men are transformed. They're inspired by their wives. Critique doesn't booing doesn't seem to work.

I tried it for quite a while. And I think, Dave, one of my favorite parts of that session was we had an army of women come to the front of the stage and I said, let's get some work done and let's pray about where you are and what you got God to do. And so we had all these women come to the front and ask for prayer. And as I prayed with women, they were crying like so many were saying, my husband sees an absolute failure when he looks in my eyes. And some women say I speak words of death to my kids every single day.

And that's a tricky part as a parent because we're teaching and we're training them, but we still need to speak life to our kids and see the potential of who they could become in Christ. My ultimate favorite part is you came up at the end and surprised me. And that was incredibly sweet.

And you can hear that part coming up here at the end of today's episode. So stay with us. Yeah, I wanted the wives to hear from a husband and your husband to say she's not just blowing smoke. She has done this and this is how it impacts your man.

And if you will do this, God will use it in a powerful way. And just a caveat, we are not saying if you're in an abusive relationship and your husband is verbally or physically abusing you, hey, just speak words of life and tell him he's the greatest. No, actually, you should get protection and get safe. The most loving thing you could do would be to separate from your husband, get your kids safe, get yourself safe and then get help, get some counseling that you need to get out of that situation.

Yeah, and then try to rebuild the marriage while you're safe. But if you're a woman, you're probably listening to this going, man, I miss that. Don't miss it next year.

Yeah, the love like you mean a cruise is taking off again next February. We always have a women's talk and a men's talk. And the men's talk was awesome as well.

It was it was simply incredible. And all the couples talk. It was just a great cruise. You don't want to miss because it's not only a cruise, it's a cruise with a purpose to enhance your marriage. And you can sign up right now.

And if you don't, you're going to miss a slot. So family life today dot com. Sign up for the love like you mean a cruise and we'll see you hopefully next February. Hey, and before we end, I just really love to pray for any wives that are listening and feel like you really need some help. Father God, I thank you for every single woman listening to this. I know just as a wife and a mom, sometimes I feel so weary and we can become hopeless.

We can feel like things will never change. But, Lord, more than anything, I pray that we will seek you. They will fall on our face before you ask for wisdom, ask for help. Lord, we can't do this in and of ourselves. So I pray for these women that you would give them hope that you would help them to see their husbands and their kids the way you see them. And then, Lord, give them the courage to speak life, not death.

Give them the courage to maybe even repent and apologize for the things that have been said. And I know, Lord, I just had like arrogance thinking I was doing it all right. So, Father, thank you that you love us no matter what, that you can give us the courage and the passion and the compassion and even the words that we need to say to our husbands. We love you, Lord, but we need you desperately.

In Jesus' name, amen. I'm Shelby Abbott, and you've been listening to Davyn Ann Wilson on Family Life Today talking about the Love Like You Mean It cruise. What if you had next year's Valentine's Day already booked? You're not trying to scramble the last week before Valentine's Day in 2025. Do you think that your spouse would appreciate an eight-day cruise over that period of time? I don't know your spouse, but I'm guessing that would be a total win for Valentine's Day in 2025, unless they're afraid of, you know, the ocean or seagulls and all-you-can-eat soft-serve ice cream.

But then it's probably not for you. But for everyone else, wouldn't it be amazing to have next year's Valentine's Day covered? Well, there's going to be a boat sailing from February 8th to the 15th, 2025 out of Miami, Florida. And just like Dave was talking about, you can book right now because this is the lowest price that will be available for this sailing. Eight days, seven nights to reconnect with your spouse.

So we expect it to sell out again. Don't delay. You can go to the link that's available in the show notes, or you can go to familylifetoday.com and click on the Love Like You Mean It banner. Or you can give us a call to make your reservation at 800-358-6329. That's 800, F as in family, L as in life, and then the word today.

And let me finish with this. I have a best friend, Michelle. She's pretty amazing. She moved recently, and so we're not as close anymore.

She moved to Atlanta. But one of the things we would do is we would walk about five to six times a week because it got out our stress. We've known each other since our kids were two. And we walk and we pray and we laugh and we never stop talking. Dave's like, you guys have talked the entire time?

Like, yes, we never stop talking. And one of the things at one point is when I had already gone through fixing my thoughts and my words and my actions, she was going through the same things. Her husband was traveling. He was gone weeks at a time.

He wasn't making it to the kids' soccer games. And so I told her, like, this is what helped me. And so Michelle's not as good with her words verbally, but she's really good at writing or texting. And so she started to journal all the things Rob was doing right and well. She would just do it a couple times. She'd only write in it a couple times a month.

But she did this for an entire year. And on his birthday, she sat down. He had no idea she was doing it. And she was trying to do it in the moment, like to thank him or to cheer for him. And she gave him this journal. And she said, Ann, he sat in the chair and he read 12 months' worth of things that I thought he was great at. And she said he cried. So the entire time he just wept as he's reading all these things that were simple, like, thanks for putting up the Christmas tree lights up outside. I know you hate it.

I know you hate it, but you do it anyway. Thank you for doing that. Thank you for getting to Macy's soccer game. You came at the end. She could have been, you didn't get there till the end. You came at the end. It must have been so hard to get out of work to even come.

Thank you for making the effort. She would go on and on, just little things, little things like that. I have never seen a man be so transformed. She wasn't doing it for that. She was doing it so that that Rob would see himself the way God saw him and the way Michelle saw him. That Azer Canedgo, when Rob looked into Michelle's eyes, toe to toe, he told me later, Ann, I want to become the man she thinks I could become. And I thought, there's so much power in that. We are in a battle together in the garden and on this earth.

We have the capacity, ladies, the power and influence to. I didn't mean to interrupt. Sounds like you were closing pretty strong and I just ruined this. What are you doing? I kept asking you last night, what are you going to close with? He said, I don't know.

I thought I got a closer. I'm sitting back there tearing up because the man I am today. Apart from Jesus, and it's all Jesus, but it's not all Jesus.

He uses people. This woman has made me the man I am. I'm not kidding.

Yes, you have. And I mean, if you saw me 25 years ago, and it isn't just I grew up and matured, she spoke first death. I was so good at that.

Boo, boo. It was nasty. And as she said, it didn't work. And it doesn't work on your husband either. She started speaking life and she told you, I didn't believe what she was saying because I thought she was lying. And then I started to realize she believes in me. She thinks I'm an amazing man. She thinks I'm a better man than I really am.

She thinks I'm a better husband and dad than I am. And I started to rise up to become the man she saw me. That as her connect though, you look into your wife's eyes and you see the man you can be, that's me.

I looked into your eyes and I got a vision of who God wanted me to be. And I'm not there yet, but I rose up to become such a better man. All I'm saying is to you women, that will happen with your man. It's not why you're doing it though. No, but I'm just saying, do it God's way.

And it may not make sense to you, like he's not that good. Speak life. Because I was not that good and she kept believing in me and she did the same thing with my three sons.

They are men. Not because I did it, because she is doing what she said. I just want to encourage you, don't give up.

Keep doing it. I'm just one man who's been transformed by his wife and you can be that woman in your man's life. All right, I'll get off the stage. I love you. Now tomorrow we're going to hear again another talk from the Love Like You Mean It cruise, where we're going to explore reigniting passion in your marriage, intentional conversations, respectful boundaries, and seeking individualized counsel. David and Wilson are going to be talking to us with Ron and Nan Deal, Julie Slattery and Michael Seitzma. That's all tomorrow and it's going to be incredible. We hope you will join us. On behalf of David and Wilson, I'm Shelby Abbott. We'll see you back next time for another edition of Family Life Today. Family Life Today is a donor-supported production of Family Life, a crew ministry helping you pursue the relationships that matter most.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-03-12 07:13:19 / 2024-03-12 07:27:00 / 14

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