Are you really, *gulp* a “nag”???

4 Feb

I’m not even going to share those scriptures that we’re all very aware are in the Bible about a nagging wife.  To be honest, before I really started growing in my understanding of God’s call for a wife, there was a day I almost picked up a black permanent marker and just scratched those verses out of the Bible.  It wasn’t because I disagreed completely with them that I felt like doing that, it was because I felt like they were used as arsenal by both men and women to beat down a wife for having a voice in a marriage, even if it was just desires and not convictions.

You know how I mentioned in my last post about playing the Holy Spirit that women make all sorts of “jokes” about men being children?  Well, men make all sorts of jokes about wives being nags too.  And because I know I have a lot of men who read my blog, I just want to offer up a suggestion that you might want to stop doing that.

Not being a nag is a really tender spot for a woman, especially one who is trying to be a respectful wife…. so any digs, puns or jokes about her getting it wrong are really bitter to the soul.

Ok ladies, so lets unpack that loaded question(s).

– Am I a nag?

– What am I allowed to bring to my husband’s attention before I cross that line of “playing the Holy Spirit?”

– If I mention something more than one time, does that always mean I’m like living with a dripping faucet and my husband should take camp on the roof?

First and foremost, respecting your husband DOES NOT mean you’re a doormat.  That you have no voice.  Or that you should just hold back all your thoughts, ideas and convictions and wait on your husband to command you around.

God created woman for man because he saw that it was not good for man to be alone.  And that man needed a help mate.

If you never share your wisdom or confront a sinning husband on Biblical issues when necessary…. you’re not submitting to scripture either just because you call it respecting him.

So how can we tell the difference between nagging and good communication?

Some people might try to warn you that if you’re not taking a Biblical issue to your husband, you don’t have a right to request things from him.  He’s a grown man and he can make his own decisions as long as he isn’t sinning.                                                                                                                  I’ll take the risk that I might be the first to tell you, that you can feel very passionate about something that isn’t necessarily a Biblical command and yet you feel the need to make that very clear to your husband – especially if it regards your love language, your ministry, your children, or your witness, and that isn’t disrespectful or nagging.

However, there are two obvious checks and balances for us women when it comes to this issue that we can monitor ourselves.

1.) Taking a parental stance…. especially if it is accompanied by discipline or condemnation.

This will include but is not limited to acting annoyed, being sarcastic, purposely embarrassing, belittling, constantly brow beating, pestering, manipulating, ignoring, or withholding things because he isn’t behaving how you want him to behave.

There is the chance that your husband will not agree with you.  That doesn’t mean you’re wrong for taking something to him, nor is it wrong to bring it back up every so often if it’s really something that is hindering your relationship or hurting you emotionally. (But remember, every so often does not mean after 30 minutes of talking to him or every twelve hours until he answers you or changes. He needs time to think and act. Tap into the fruits of the spirit of patience and self control while you wait.)

But your actions when talking to him, and in between talking to him are what contribute to either nagging or communicating your heart. You’re still called to unconditional respect even if he doesn’t agree or change immediately.

2.) Trying to control his actions after the discussion.

This one is a tricky little sin because we women have the curse from Eve to try to be so darn controlling.  We think we have incredible wisdom and the way we do things is the best way to do it.  But God didn’t create us to be our husband’s dictator.  We’re his helper.  And helping sometimes means keeping our mouths shut while he figures out how to meet our requests best.

For example, say you decided to talk to you husband about how it would really help you if he’d be in charge of the trash.  And he says “Ok, I can do that.”

Leave it be.  You become a nag when you start trying to demand he do it when you want it done and how you want it done.

Even if you say it with a smile, you don’t need to keep adding things like “Could you take the trash out at night instead of the morning?  Could you empty it when it’s 3/4 full instead of full so I don’t have to worry about it spilling on the floor?  Could you put the new bag in the trash like this instead of like that?”

As painful as this truth is for women who really like things to be exactly how they want them…. unless it’s really, truly causing a severe problem – it doesn’t matter if the trash goes out at night or in the morning.  Or how the towels get folded.  Or how the floor gets swept.

He isn’t you.  Nagging always indicates a clear desire for everything to be done exactly how *you* do it.  He will never be you.  And you wouldn’t be happy if he was in the long run. Because all those things you want him to do as a man, he’d stop doing if he turned into you.

Hopefully this takes a little pressure off all us women when it comes to that dreadful thought about being “that” wife. Just because you have suggestions, preferences and different convictions and you want to talk to your husband about them, doesn’t make you a nag! Whew!!!

Practical Application:

– If something is really on your heart, take it to your husband.

– Be humble and honest. Don’t become the parent in the conversation.  Stay on the same team. And don’t punish him for his response.

– Even if you took something to him two months ago and it’s still really hurting you or causing a problem, take it to him again.  That isn’t nagging.

– When he hears you on an issue – let him handle it HIS way!!!! Our job is to help him by showing him areas where he can serve the family and become more like Christ.  Our job is not to tell him HOW he has to do it. Especially if we think he’s only right if he does it exactly like we would.


15 Responses to “Are you really, *gulp* a “nag”???”

  1. peacefulwife February 4, 2014 at 9:50 am #

    Love this!!!!! Thank you for sharing this truth, Kayla! 🙂

    • Kayla Gulick February 4, 2014 at 10:25 am #

      This hung me up for a long time April! Even had some wrestling in my spirit about this over the weekend. I’m hoping this helps someone else out there too!

  2. Meagan February 4, 2014 at 11:09 am #

    Wow. This post just kicked my butt. I guess it’s what I needed to hear. And I needed to hear it from an impartial source, and not just my husband telling me I’m doing this. It’s too easy to argue with him. Not so much when someone is breaking down scripture. LOL Thanks for sharing. I also very much enjoyed the previous post about not being our husband’s holy spirit. I appreciate how you always share the Truth no matter the public opinion on the topic. Keep it up!

    • Kayla Gulick February 4, 2014 at 11:30 am #

      You’re SOOOOO not alone in this Meagan. I only ever have things to share on topics because of all my own situations, temptations and shortcomings as a wife, mom and friend! I really appreciate your encouragement and that you took the time to comment. God Bless!

  3. Elisha February 4, 2014 at 4:16 pm #

    I am so thankful to have found your blog! I love it!

    • Kayla Gulick February 4, 2014 at 6:35 pm #

      *WOW* Thank you so much for saying that! My blog wouldn’t mean anything to me without this awesome fellowship I get from other believers reading along! I’m so glad you took the time to give a shout out!

  4. learningever February 5, 2014 at 8:39 am #

    Great overview of tough issues for us wives to live out. I finally learned to ask for help instead of doing it all and resenting it and then there is the huge hurdle to get over – He doesn’t do it in the “all perfect” way that I do. It usually isn’t even important, it’s that I “want it my way”. Pride, self on the throne.. How easy it is for me to default to that place if I am not careful and staying plugged in to Jesus.

    • Kayla Gulick February 5, 2014 at 9:03 am #

      I’ve been so guilty of verbally and non-verbally wanting my husband to do things the exact way I do them too. The controlling nature inside us is SO strong sometimes!

  5. howsyourlovelife February 5, 2014 at 10:27 am #

    I agree with everything you wrote, and as I was reading it, kept thinking of my teenaged son, as well. It is so important that moms show respect to their sons, and not expect ‘their brand of perfection’ from them, as well. I want my son to feel respected by me so that he will command respect from his wife in the future.

    • Kayla Gulick February 5, 2014 at 10:31 am #

      Oh girl…. what a point you just made!!!!!! See, I need you to comment just to keep me in line! With three sons of my own who will one day be husbands, I can’t forget to start these practices with them now as well! Thank you so much!!!

  6. Gleniece February 5, 2014 at 11:32 am #

    Love to see all the comments fly back and forth. You are doing a wonderful service, Kayla. We all need each other in this great calling to be respectful wives. It took me SO much longer to grasp this in the past, because I was doing it alone. Thank you for your insight and willingness to bare your weaknesses for all of us to learn from. May God truly bless your marriage.

    • Kayla Gulick February 5, 2014 at 11:36 am #

      Have I told you lately how glad I am we’re friends?! Thank you so much for the encouragement and for being here to do life together. God really knew what He was doing when He created us for fellowship 🙂

  7. Ted February 5, 2014 at 2:01 pm #

    You suggestions for husbands is well taken, Kayla. God just recently brought this to my attention, and I had to apologize to my wife for the way that I spoke about her to my sons.Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks, and I want my heart to speak nothing but love concerning my wife.

    • Kayla Gulick February 5, 2014 at 3:08 pm #

      What a beautiful gift to give your wife!! Thank you for sharing that and encouraging other men to consider your example!


  1. I’m putting a question on the table. | Lessons Of Mercy - March 19, 2014

    […] talked in-depth about nagging and playing the Holy […]

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