One Thing that Every Marriage Needs …

I had a young lady, who was a couple of months away from getting married, ask me, “What’s the one thing I can do that will really make a big difference in my upcoming marriage?” The answer for me was easy … “Give him LOTS of praise and admiration. You cannot heap it on too thick!”

I mentioned it again in a marriage class I was teaching yesterday … “if there was one thing that could make an immediate positive impact on your marriage, it would be praising your spouse.”

You and I should be our spouse’s biggest fans and biggest cheerleaders in life.

I believe that admiration (or praise) is the one thing that we don’t do enough in marriage. While I believe both husbands and wives need to do this, it’s wives who especially need to heap large amounts of praise on their husbands.  Dr. Willard Harley, who wrote the book, “His Needs Her Needs,” says that admiration is the second greatest need in a man’s life only behind sexual fulfillment.  Men never grow out of their great need for admiration … especially from their spouse.

I know personally I’m very motivated by praise in my marriage.

Lea makes our bed every morning. Personally, it doesn’t matter to me whether the bed is made or not, but Lea likes it made.  One morning a couple of weeks ago, while Lea was having her morning quiet time, I took a second and made the bed before heading out for work.  Later that day she gave me a hug and a kiss and told me how sweet it was for me to make the bed for her. It didn’t take long for me to decide to make it again.  That little praise made all the difference.

Ephesians 4:29, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs…”

Here’s another personal example.  Every Saturday morning we try to clean the house. I do the vacuuming, sweeping and mopping, while Lea does all the other things … including dusting which I hate to do. A while back I got my cleaning jobs whipped out quick and decided to pick up the dust rag and just dust a couple of the big items in the room.  Lea walked through the room, saw me holding the dust rag, stopped in her tracks and said, “Wow, I’ve never seen you looking sexier than right now dusting this room.” That’s all it took.  I dusted the REST of the house flaunting my sexiness EVERYWHERE for her to see. J  All I needed was a little encouragement to be motivated.

Of course all your praise and encouragement in marriage isn’t for the sole purpose to motivate your spouse to do something for you, but it’s SO needed in our marriages.

Want to make a big difference in your marriage today? Instead of criticism … try praise … and LOTS of it.  Be the biggest cheerleader in your spouse’s world.


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Article by Trey Morgan

I am a Christian husband and father, who moonlights as the minister for the church of Christ in Childress, Texas. My wife Lea and I have been married for 25 years. We are doing our best to raise our 4 boys, who are all growing up way too fast. Read 1182 articles by
15 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Amy O'Connor says:

    I have that verse posted on my fridge to remind me every day. It doesn’t always work, but I keep trying! :)

  2. Jin says:

    Aww! I feel like I do praise my hubby, but not as much as he deserves. I am glad I read this, I needed a reminder that I need to give him even more praise. He does so much for me!

  3. jasonS says:

    Just wanted to add my ‘amen.’ You are so right, Trey! It may sound so simple, but it’s a huge deal. Thanks.

  4. Sarah S. says:

    I believe this to my core, but I SO needed to be reminded today. Thanks for the reminder. Keep preachin’ truth, friend!

  5. vanilla says:

    We would love to praise each other more, but each of us realizes the other is so in need of “fixing.”
    The Lockhorns

  6. Lura says:

    There is an old movie (don’t remember the title) that is about a mother whose daughter is engaged. The mother gives the daughter a book on how to train a puppy and tells her that the same principles apply to training a husband. Of course training a puppy requires lots of praise. All went well until the fiance and the Dad found out that the women were using a puppy training manual on them. Wish I could remember the title but it is very funny.

    After almost 45 years of marriage both my sweetie and I are almost through basic training…….

    • Sheila says:

      I think the movie you’re referring to is If a Man Answers Hang Up with Sandra Dee and Bobby Darin…Very funny flick!

  7. Rick Morgan says:

    It is way too easy to drop this habit after you are married.

  8. Barry Wiseman says:

    The reason men need praise from their wives so much is that it’s just almost impossible and absolutely gross to try to give yourself a pat on the back with your own tongue! Just sayin’…

  9. So, I guess you’re saying that praise after sexual fulfillment is the holy grail of marriage? :-) So, how could I encourage my wife of almost 10 years to give some more praise?

  10. Greg England says:

    You sexy duster, you!! But you are so right in the value of praise. Takes so very little on our part and means the world to the one we love. Works great with kids and grandkids. I’ve even won over “enemies” in the church through praising them.

  11. […] Trey Morgan writes some of the best posts I read on marriage. His article, “One Thing that Every Marriage Needs,” is short, but is a […]

About Me

Trey Morgan Here are my thoughts about marriage, family, raising children, humor, faith and the life God intended for us all. I am a Christian husband and father, who moonlights as the minister for the church of Christ in Childress, Texas. My wife Lea and I have been married for 25 years. We are doing our best to raise our 4 boys, who are all growing up way too fast.

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Trey Morgan
Husband, father and cancer survivor & Senior Minister for the Childress Church of Christ. Tweets about life, marriage, Texas Rangers and randomness.
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