This past Saturday I had the opportunity to share my truth on the “M” word, and I’m not talking about money. I’m talking about M A N I P U L A T I O N in marriage and ministry 😬.
Yup, I said it. I’m not ashamed to say that I was a culprit and if I’m completely honest, I have to check my heart on a second by second basis to ensure that I am not a present culprit of manipulation. 🤦🏽♀️
While most women can easily come up with ways their spouse or significant other fails to show love for them, as wives we can often miss the plank in our own eye. In God’s goodness, he created women for relationship and influence, but as every woman innately knows, our influence can become a power that is used for selfish gain rather than the glory of God. Instead of going to God with our unmet needs and disappointments, our natural temptation is to resort to manipulation, the attempt to control or get our way through subtle, creative, and unfair means.
It’s easy to become a culprit as it happens so subtle in most cases, but if we are not careful, subtle manipulation can become big manipulation and if you are not careful and if you work along side your spouse, it can spill over from your marriage into your ministry.
Here is a checklist for your intentions and your heart. If you notice that your falling into any of these subtle traps, go before God for a ❤️ check.
1. Complaining and nagging until he gives you what you want.
2. Verbally out-talking him and shutting him down with your verbal skills.
3. Making you husband feel like he is responsible for your unhappiness, anger, or sadness: “If only you made more money, were home more, had a better job….”
4. Expecting him to read your mind, but giving little in the way of clues: Sighing, pouting, giving one-word answers, but when he asks what’s wrong, answering “nothing.” - My favorite one
5. Banging pots and pans around in the kitchen to make a point that you’re doing the dishes, without actually coming out and asking for help.
6. Withholding sex or using sex to get what you want.
8. Laying guilt on him; telling him how disappointed you are in him.
9. Making him feel like an inadequate provider : “We’re the only ones I know who haven’t been to Disney”
If you find yourself guilty of some (or many) of these tactics in an attempt to get your husband’s attention, let me give this word of encouragement:
Know that no temptation has overtaken you that is not common to woman (1 Corinthians 10:13). While manipulation seems to be a particular temptation for wives, through the power of the word of God, we can choose a better way! Be encouraged!