Wives: Stop Judging, Start Listening

Marriage / Young Marriage Tayler Beede September 12, 2013

“A young wife giving marriage advice is like a pregnant woman giving parenting advice.”

I’ve been seeing this one floating around on Pinterest, and wow, how’s that for discouragement?

(And if we’re going to get technical, this comparison honestly doesn’t even correlate. An engaged woman giving marriage advice would be like a pregnant woman giving parenting advice.)

Stop looking down on others

What’s a young wife to do when she has a heart for other young wives? Is she not allowed to use what God has already taught her to help other wives?

When I started up this blog with my mom, I got a lot of flack for writing about marriage because I was (and still am) inexperienced at being married. I don’t know how kids affect a marriage, I haven’t even reached the “seven year itch,” and according to most people (many of which barely know us), my husband and I haven’t been through many trials.

I never said I know everything, because I never will. I’ll go through many more trials with my husband, stumble along the road of being a wife, and fight for my marriage every step of the way. Marriage has already been extremely challenging, and my only hope is to encourage other wives (especially new wives) along the way.

The Bible tells us not to look down on others just because they’re young (1 Timothy 4:12), yet it’s something I see all around me. Young moms are looked down on, young writers are looked down on, anyone new in the field of anything, really, are looked down on, crushed, and judged. This often results in those individuals someday becoming just like the ones that judged them—bitter and quick to resist advice—simply because of how beaten down they felt for so long.

I know it’s frustrating to see someone just coming in to a new experience, who’s innocent and naive, who doesn’t really know a thing about something you’ve worked long and hard at. It’s tempting to be condescending. But everyone’s story is different. Everyone’s heart is different. Each person sees something from a different angle. Even someone younger and more inexperienced might be able to provide you with just the wisdom you need. Most of the time it’s less about her giving advice, and more about her just sharing her heart. Be open to that.

Calling all young wives and experienced wives

Young wives—your voice matters. If you have a heart for helping other wives, go for it. Speak up about the hurdles you’ve crossed, and how God has brought you through them. You never know how you might help another wife. God never said he didn’t want the inexperienced. In fact, he often uses the most unexpected people to play huge parts in his plan.

Experienced wives—don’t be so quick to shoot down young wives. Come at it subjectively—if the same blog post, bit of wisdom, piece of experience, etc., was given to you by a seasoned wife, would you react the same way? Be open to what God might be trying to teach you through even the most innocent wife.

And as for the above quote, how about something more like “God can use any wife—of any age, life stage, or experience level—to make an impact on another marriage.”

Let’s spread the word—pin it, share it on Facebook, tweet it, or just keep it in the back of your mind for those times when you’re tempted to disregard a potential learning experience (or are being looked down on for being young).

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