In the previous post I shared about the season my wife, Andrea, and I are in. We have decided together that it would be best for me to stay at home with our son for the first two years of his life. Even though we are having role reversal in the traditional sense, my God given responsibilities do not change. This post will focus on the husband’s role of SECURITY There are four needs that fall under this role.
Physical protection– fighting the bad guys, rushing into the burning building, changing the flat tire in the rain.
Emotional protection– Offering encouragement, affection and a listening ear on a daily basis. Giving your wife support even when she is being… difficult (just as I can be difficult).
Spiritual leadership– Showing spiritual leadership, taking responsibility for the family’s spiritual growth. Making the family’s service to God a priority.
Financial protection– Making sure food is on the table. It is the husbands responsibility to make sure the physical needs of his family are met. This isn’t to say the wife can not help. She is after all the helper (Genesis 2:18) What this means is that if the needs of an able bodied man’s family are not met, God will hold the husband responsible. Even though Eve ate the forbidden fruit, God confronted Adam.
Ephesians 5: 28-29:
In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church…
Can I meet the needs of security as a stay-at-home dad?
At 6″1 weighing in at 145 pounds I will do my best. I hope that I have proven to my wife that I will physically stand in harm’s way for her. I don’t see how being a stay-at-home dad will effect this much. I just need to remember it is still my responsibility.
The trick with this one need is that I must anticipate my wife’s emotional needs to change with all of these new factors. Having a baby in of itself brings a new range of emotional needs for her. I must be extra sensitive. For example, I know it will be hard for her to be away from the baby. To accommodate I have taken the responsibility to figure out the best baby monitor for her to use. When the baby sleeps Andrea will be able to watch him with her phone. It is a small gesture on my part, but one of many ways I can be mindful of her emotional needs through this season. Whether the husband is at work or at home, it is still his responsibility to provide and maintain an atmosphere of emotional security for his wife.
Babies take time. When you have less time, you have to compensate elsewhere. I already know a temptation of mine will be to cut off my one-on-one time with God. There will be plenty of times before church where I will be tempted to tell my wife that we are too tired, it just isn’t worth getting all of the baby stuff together and showing up for church. As the husband I will need to take the initiative in making sure my family’s relationship with God is top priority. If that means making sure all of the baby stuff is together and ready to go the night before church, then I will need to take the initiative and see it done. If my wife needs help finding time to fit in her one-one-one time with God, then will I cut out time in my schedule to free her up. As the husband it is my responsibility to make sure I am leading spiritually. Staying at home with the baby does not change this role.
This is the one I was most concerned about. We are in the gray area. It also is why I included a bit of our background. I have given Andrea more than just promises that I will provide for her. I have backed my words with action. I have given her six years of meeting her needs to assure her. If we get to a point where she can no longer continue to work, Andrea knows I will do what I must to provide. This is a safety net for her, and it removes the stress of her having to work. Everyday she goes to work she has in the back of her mind that she does not have to do this, her husband will work if needed. She knows I am not staying at home to get out of work. We also plan for this to be a short season. The goal is for her to move to part time in two years, where I will pick up more of the financial burden. Until then I will be managing our money and planning our budget. We will make our decisions together, but I believe it my responsibility to lead us financially.
So can I provide all of these needs as a stay-at-home dad? I believe so. This is a decision my wife and I have agreed on together with prayer and mentorship from Godly people. Through God’s grace and provisions, Andrea and I will continue to move forward with this plan unless we hear otherwise from Him.