5 Things Dads Can Do To Serve Their Wives With A New Baby

Being a dad for a second time, I have quickly learned that serving your wife is even more important after the baby comes.  Since I bumped my head a few times along the way with my daughter when it came to helping my wife I decided to do better with our second child.

Now I don’t get it right all the time, but I wanted to pass along a few things that I know have made a difference for Cherie and I.  These are extremely practical, but I’ve learned that simple goes a long way my fatherly friends.

1.  Wash Anything You Can Find:  I really mean it.  If it’s dirty make it not dirty.  Here is a small list of things that could use your muscles and soap of varying kinds:

  • Laundry
  • The kid(s)
  • The dishes
  • Her car
  • Her pumping equipment (don’t be a sissy)
  • The baby bottles
  • The diaper pail (outside with ventilation is recommended)
  • The bathrooms

Serve your wife well.

2.  Get Up At Night:  I don’t care if you and your wife chose to feed the baby in such a way that disqualifies you anatomically or not. Get your booty out of bed.   She may do the feeding, but you can do the burping, rocking, and putting back to bed.  If you are doing bottle feedings, then take a shift even if you are working the next day.  Let her choose the shifts she wants and don’t moan and complain when you get the crummy one.

Serve your wife well.

3.  Let Her Have Time To Herself:  I know what you are thinking.  This means you will have to say no to playing video games, going to a softball game, watching TV, and staying late at work.  Can I tell you a secret?  You are right!  Create time where you are the one that takes the load of the baby and let your wife get her nails done, go to the store, drive around in circles in the Home Depot parking lot.  I don’t care!  Just let her do what she wants to do.

Serve your wife well.

4.  Bite Your Lip Even If You Have To Bite It Off:  You may be right.  Your way could be better.  You may even see Jesus in a taco chip, but don’t say anything unless it encourages your wife.  Why?  Flash back to the room where your child was born.  Remember that?  You didn’t have anything to do with that and it hurt more than you think and so she deserves an extra scoop of grace.  Your wife needs you to love her not fix her.   She needs you to listen not lecture.  She needs you to lighten her load not weigh it down.

Serve your wife well. 

5.  Pray For Her Out Loud:  Can I just tell you a secret?  Moms may look like they have it all together, but inside they are always questioning if they are any good at being a mom.  They need us as husbands to encourage them every second of the day and to pray for them often.  I’ll take it one step further.  They need us to pray out loud for them.  We can say we are praying for them, but they need to hear the words we feel.  They need to know that you are asking God’s protection, guidance, and healing on them.  When you lay your fatigued head down on that pillow and the urge is there to nod off for a couple hours of sleep before your “bundle of joy” alarm clock goes off…pray.  Pray for your wife, for your family, and for God’s grace to cover your home.

Serve your wife well.

Men I will say it straight.  We need to get over ourselves and focus our attention to our wives.  They have need us more than ever as husbands and as fathers, but only we can decided if we want to fulfill those roles well.

Don’t miss out on the blessing it is to serve your wife and to watch her grow into the woman of God you desperately desire.

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Seeking Wisdom: Proverbs 17:17 – Do You Really Have Any Friends?

“A friend loves at all times,

and a brother is born for adversity.”

- Proverbs 17:17

 The word “friend” is used to loosely.

In some ways it has reached the same vanilla coverage that “love” has in that it’s used so freely in describe anyone that you come in contact.

I even know some people that will say they have 10-12 best friends.

I’m confused.  Isn’t a best friend 1 person?

The fear I have with this blanket use of friend and even best friend is that we may have no idea what a true friend looks like and what a true friend is supposed to do.

Solomon gives us a simple job description for what we should look for in a friend in Proverbs 17:17.

As your friend I promise to:

  1. Love you unconditionally
  2. Stand by you during anything.

Too simple?

Do this for me.  Think of your top 5 friends and put them through the filter of just these two questions.  Would they pass the test?  Will they love you ALL the time?  Will they walk through ANY rough patch?

We certainly need people that we hang out with, who we go to baseball games with, who we carpool with, but I don’t think that is the extent to which God wants us to live.  He wants us to live with deep relationships.

He wants us to have people we can get past our safe “I’m fine, how are you?” responses and into real conversations that involve tears, questions, and challenges to each other.

When we dare to enter into those types of relationships I believe we have realized true friendship.

Even Jesus had varying degrees of relationships with the people he interacted with.

  • His Group – 12 Disciples
  • His Friends – Peter, James, John
  • His Best Friend – John

I don’t mean to pull the Jesus-card, but if Jesus thought it important to have a friend that considered closer than any of the others, don’t you think we do too?

I want to encourage you and I to pursue authentic and deep relationships with people.  Find someone you can trust, value, and relate to, but then be willing to extend yourself past the pleasantries and into vulnerability.   It will take time and you can’t just ask anyone to do this, but I believe the long-term effects are worth the wait and effort.

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True Confessions Of A First Time Dad: “What’s Your Birthday Name?”

My daughter Aniston just turned 3.

Give me a minute.

I always have to let that sink in when I say it, because it seems like yesterday I was cleaning up her spit-up and swaddling here like a burrito.

Ok…better.

Well BG did turn three and it was an awesome day/week/month of celebrating for her.  I realize I’m biased, but we think she is really smart.  By the time she was 2 she knew her colors, shapes, and could count to 10 (sometimes 12 if the staircase was long enough).  She also knows her full name and even the day and month of her birthday!

In classic BG fashion she has her own twist on it though.  When asking people about their birthday instead of asking them “When is your birthday?” she will ask “What’s your birthday name?”

It melts my heart every time.

This got me to thinking though about another “birthday name”.  Our spiritual one.

Do you know the date when you accepted Christ as your Lord and Savior?

I’m not talking about your feelings of “I know I’m good with God” or “I know where I stand”.  I’m talking about the day that you know without a doubt that you locked it down.  The day the weight of your sin, the gap it caused between you and God, the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross, and the gift of grace He offers hit you right between the eyes and you accepted Him as your Lord and savior.

THAT day.

Do you know when THAT day is?

For me it was Sunday November 24,1996 at First Christian Church in Rapid City, South Dakota.  It was at the end of the 11:00 AM service when the invitation was given that I walked forward, talked with an elder named Larry Stevens, and was baptized that day.  That was my “birthday name” and I’ve never been the same since.

Why is this important?

Well let me risk asking too many questions and ask you a few more.

  • What year did you graduate high school?
  • When did you get married?
  • When were your children born?
  • When did the White Sox last win the World Series?

Let’s be honest.  You didn’t have to grab your planners to think about those dates.  You know them without thinking.

Why?

Because they mean something to you…because they impacted you…because they changed your life.

Let me press down a little harder.

How much more important is your eternal salvation than your High School graduation?

Ouch…I know.

I make a big deal about this because it IS a big deal.  I want you to KNOW what that date is not so you can get a tattoo on your arm to remember, but so that you are sure your soul is tattooed with the name of Jesus for eternity.

So if you don’t know your spiritual “birthday name” and you want to know without a shadow of a doubt then follow what the Apostle Paul says.

“That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.” – Romans 9:9-10

To make the decision to follow Jesus say these words out loud.

“I am a sinner, separated from God, and I know that Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection is the only answer for that separation.  I accept him as my Lord and Savior, receive his free gift of Grace, and commit to follow him the rest of my life.”

Awesome!

One last thing.

Look at the calendar.

Congratulations…you now know your Birthday Name.

See ya in heaven.

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12 Things I Forgot About Having A Baby (Pt. 2)

My son Easton continues to do great and thanks for the prayers!

If you want to see some pictures follow me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/brian.hunt5

Here is Part 2 of the 12 Things I Forgot About Having A Baby.

6.  A Baby On Your Chest Is A Glimpse Heaven.  This doesn’t take too much explanation. When your baby curls up on your chest and falls asleep you realize with every deep breath that God gave you a blessing like none other.  I want to bottle this feeling so badly because there is nothing like it in the world.

5.  Counting By 3’s Comes In Handy.  As Cherie and I construct our nightly feeding game plan we quickly realized that we do in fact use some of the math we learned in 1st Grade.  12, 3, 6, 9 feedings are coming at you as sure as April 15 is coming for taxes.  If you screw this up you might as well consider yourself toast for the rest of the day.

4.  Changing A Diaper Is Exhausting.  Trying to change a poopy diaper without getting any “condiments” on you is virtually impossible.  Not to mention that you have to be a 3rd degree black belt dodge flying arms, legs, and parts.  If you make it through unharmed you feel like you deserve a Congressional Medal of Honor.

3.  You Cannot Swaddle A Baby Too Tight.  I believe I could go head-to-head with a Chipotle burrito wrapper and win when it comes to swaddling a baby.  Both our kids like to be wrapped so tightly in their swaddle blankets that you think you may have to cut them out of it.  However if we didn’t do this our kids both have hands they don’t know what to do with as badly as Will Ferrell in Talladega Nights and will wake themselves up by flaying themselves in the face.

2.  Babies Have Split Personalities.  Babies can be jerks.  Babies from 7:00 am – 9:00 pm are the sweetest things on earth as they sleep through anything including a 3-year-old big sister.  Babies from 9:00 pm – 6:00 am are insane, evil, and make you want to pull your eyebrows out because they won’t sleep for anything!  But then they flash that cute “I just farted, but you think I did it on purpose” smile and everything is good in the world again.

1.  God Uses Babies To Multiple Love.  Before you have a baby, you think your love expenditure is at it’s maximum and you have nothing more to give.  Then God opens secret ventricles in your heart that you never knew about when you see that baby.   Your love expands and God is awesome.  I thank God everyday for Aniston and Easton.  They have allowed Cherie and I to learn what unconditional love is all about and then to realize this is just a glimpse into the unconditional love God has for us.

 

Well that’s what I’ve forgotten about babies, but don’t worry it’s all coming back to me.  I can’t wait to see what God teaches me through now being a daddy of 2 so stay tuned!!!!

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12 Things I Forgot About Having A Baby (Pt. 1)

I’m sorry I’ve been away for a little while, but my wife and I were busy giving birth to our son Easton!  Ok, Cherie did much more of “the birthing” and I did much more of the standing around and encouraging, but at the end of the day I’m a daddy again!

We are so very grateful for the prayers and support as little Easton tried to follow in his big sister’s footsteps a little too early and have a NICU stay of his own.  God truly answered our prayers and we are fortunate to be able to leave on time with our son in tow!

If you want to see some pictures follow me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/brian.hunt5

Well, it didn’t take long to realize that in the past 3 years I had forgotten a few things about having a baby.

Here is Part 1 of the 12 Things I Forgot About Having A Baby.

 

12.  Labor Is Crazy.  One minute you are sitting at home watching DVR’d episodes of Judge Judy and 4 hours later you are in a hospital room watching your wife become a member of the Avengers as she gives birth to a 7 pound miracle!

11.  Doctor’s Are Really Aggressive.  It still is mind melting to me that as parents we hold our children like delicate porcelain dolls only to hand them over to doctors and nurses that play with them like GI-Joes in the back yard.  “Easy Doc!  That took some work to get here!”

10.  Men Could Never Give Birth.  Ignoring physiology all together, guys don’t have what it takes mentally, emotionally, or fortitudenly to get 6-10 pounds of baby out of a car seat let alone…well…themselves.  God knew that if the human race was going to exist it would have to be up to the woman because the man would tap out way to quickly.

9.  Leaving The Hospital Feels Like You Got Fired.  This seemed so ironic to me.  I mean if you think about it, when they say you need to go home, you are escorted to the front door, your stuff is boxed up, and they won’t leave until you alone until you drive away.  The only thing missing is a severance package and a maybe an exit interview!

8.  Burps Are God’s Release Valves.  I quickly remembered how amazing the sound of a burp was after a bottle-feeding.  Those little gaseous releases makes the whole world right again.  Plus, I’m pretty sure that I hold my breath the whole time I’m patting his back so when the burp comes that means I get to breathe again.

7.  Poop, Pee, Breast Feeding, and Nipples Are Ok To Talk About Publically.  Not that I’m chomping at the bit to throw “poopy” in on a daily basis or anything, but I remember now that there are fewer faux pa words when babies are in the picture.  People actually will strike up conversations around bowl movements and milk production, when normally those don’t make the top 10 of first date conversation starters I don’t think.

 

 

….Stay Tuned for the last 6! 

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