You may be asking a really simple question, “What really is manipulation?”  To put it simply,

Manipulation is simply trying to outsmart someone else to get our own way In this case, we are talking about manipulating our husbands and what is so sad is that this is an area that comes so easily and naturally to a woman. If we believe that God’s plan for marriage is better than ours and that He has created our husbands to lead our families, then manipulation is truly aimed at:

 Outsmarting God to get our way

We all know that we can’t outsmart God & I am not really sure what makes us resort to this tactic; I guess maybe we are all just “Desperate Housewives” in one sense! An early 20th century Biblical scholar, Crawford Toy,  writes in his Commentary on Proverbs that there are 3 things that make a house intolerable:

 1.     the leaking through of rain

2.     bugs

3.     a wife’s nagging


Did you know that nagging is a form of manipulation?  We nag, nag, nag until our husbands get so tired of hearing us that they finally give in to our wishes.  I never want my husband to look at me as a nag.  I am so bad about this that there are many times I will have a “to do” list and I will tell Dick what needs to be fixed, but I will never go back & remind him.  I think sometimes he gets more irritated with me because I don’t remind him and he can’t always remember what needs to be done than if I were to nag a little about it!

Another form of manipulation is what one of my friends admits she has resorted to in order to get her way.  She said it usually goes like this…

 “Honey, what do you think this lamp looks like here?  (Wanting him to agree with her) and then he might say something like, “I don’t like it there; I think it looks better over here.”  Now, instead of discussing it with him at that point, and trying to do what he likes, she leaves it for a day or two, but is still unhappy with it.  So then she goes in, changes it.  Then, he wonders why she changed it and so the discussion starts and he replies, “Well if you didn’t want my opinion, then why did you ask for it? “  So, she has created a situation where he doesn’t want to give an opinion now and she finally gets her way and wins.  It would work a lot better if she would just be the decorator in this situation, unless of course he has strong decorating opinions.  In that case, they both need to be able to give their opinions and they need to sit down and come up with a happy decision that pleases them both.

In review, we have looked at how to keep our husbands ticking through submission, tranquility in the home, faithfulness & respect.  And four areas that tick them off are comparison, lack of communication, finances & manipulation.  We are now ready to see what tickles them.  This should be fun:)


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