How to Follow a Husband who Doesn’t Want to Lead

By September 1, 2015Blog, Daily Declarations

This weekend, the movie War Room “shocked” the film industry by debuting at #2 and making $11 million. It’s the story of a husband, wife and daughter who live in a beautiful home, have great careers, are financially secure, and their marriage is broken and crumbling.

The Bible says wives should submit to their own husband. How does a wife follow a husband who doesn’t want to lead? Or better yet, how does she follow a parked car?

Some men confuse leadership with being controlling. They make demands and tell their wife and children what to do, when to do it, and how to do it.

Some men don’t want the responsibility of leadership. They are immobilized and don’t do anything. They follow the directions of their wife and/or become a burden to their wife and children due to their lack of involvement in the family. They end up acting and being treated like the wife’s child.

So what is a wife to do?

Pray, pray, and then pray some more. Through the power of prayer, God can touch a husband’s heart and mind and move him in a way that nagging, complaining, crying, and cursing can never accomplish.

Movie_War Room

Movie_War Room

Does this mean wives do not talk to their husband’s about the challenges, issues, and hurt they have? That is definitely not the case.

Your words should be direct, honest, and not delivered or meant to demean, embarrass, belittle, or emasculate your husband. They should be tempered in love, guided by God, and spoken in timely wisdom.

Allow God to direct you in not only WHAT you say, but WHEN you say it and with what tone you deliver the message.

For example:
     *Sometimes the message needs to be delivered in a firm, no nonsense manner.

     *Sometimes the message needs to be delivered as “pillow talk” after you’ve expressed your love in a physical manner.

     *Sometimes the message is delivered when you’re having dinner, sharing a walk, or any activity you enjoy doing together.

In most cases, husbands may have challenges in their leadership role in the marriage, but this does not diminish the love he has for his wife and children or his desire to protect and provide for his family.

Movie_War Room

Movie_War Room

I must be honest. For many years, I struggled with all of this. I would ask God, pastors, my prayers warriors “why does the wife have to pray for the husband when he’s the one acting a fool?” I resented this. I prayed for my husband many times out of obedience, but I was upset with God that I was praying and he wasn’t praying.

I was frustrated when preachers, teachers, churches, self help books, counselors, and even what I read in the Bible about how to mend broken marriages begins and ends with the prayers of the wife.

Yesterday, my husband and I was listening to our youngest daughter read her morning Bible devotion. When she finished, I read the bible verse that went with her lesson. After reading the verse, three times, I received the clarity I’ve been seeking all these years.

In my favorite book, it says “it is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him”. (Genesis 2:18)

After reading this verse for decades, the word helper stood out to me like never before. My mind, heart, spirit, and soul received and understood that as the Helper, the wife’s prayers support her husband. The husband’s prayers empower him to serve his family.

To remove the “what have you done for me lately” mindset that breaks marriages, “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord” (Ephesians 5:22). “Husbands, “love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her…”(Ephesians 5:25).

The wife’s prayers don’t eliminate the husband from praying. Everyone is responsible for their relationship with God. But in some cases, the prayers of the wife is the HELP that serves as the “jumper cables” for the husband to commit to his prayer life.

Movie_War Room

Movie_War Room

Daily Declaration

In the comments below, what blessings have your family received from the power of prayer?




  • link says:

    I appreciate you listing those 50 things. I was having trouble practically applying the principle of submitting to your husband as a young wife. I believe I struggle because I never had an example in my life who showed me how this looks like. As a matter of fact, my parents had a very bad relationship with each other and there was much abuse that I grew up around.

    • Riley Sheri says:

      I am grateful that my words and my journey brought insight to you. I pray you continue to grow and I wish you many blessings!!!

  • PRO100 says:

    Consult with an attorney before you do anything drastic, like calling the police. In most states you cannot evict a spouse who has been living with you. In community property states, such as Texas and California, even if the house is in your name you cannot evict him without a court order to vacate.

  • Thanks for posting this useful stuff. If you w’ill keep going your great job i will visit your blog.

  • When Paul and Peter write of submission and obedience, then, they can t mean following husbands into sin. Instead, submission should be an attitude of putting others welfare first to literally put oneself under. True submission is pursuing our husbands best by supporting and loving them; enabling sin is neither supportive nor loving.

  • EGAIS says:

    None of this means we don t submit. But let s remember what submission really means. Let s submit to our husband s

Leave a Reply