How Amazing Grace Is Helping Me Through My Wife (ESV)
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- Format: Folded Tract
- Size: 3.5 inches x 5.5 inches
- Pages: 8
- Version: ESV
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The full text of this tract is shown below in the ESV version. (Do you want to print this tract in a different version than the one listed? Contact us and let us know what you're looking for—we may be able to create the alternate version for you at no charge.)
This true story is written to encourage America’s greatest resource: a stable, loving family.
I remember when I was a junior in high school, I went for a walk in the woods of northern Indiana and came across an old cabin. I walked around that log dwelling with lofty visions of what it would be like to have a girl become my wife and share the journey of building our own home together. If you would have asked me then what I wanted most in a spouse, I would have said “friendship”. At the time I had no idea that there were countless essential purposes besides companionship that can only be given a man through a wife.
Even in my twenties I still had no clue that what a woman needs most in a man is tender affection, conversation, honesty & openness, financial support and family-building security and protection.
I had no inclination that a valuable husband to any woman learns to be full of hugs and kisses at every opportunity, tells her how much he genuinely cares for her with a steady flow of words, cards, flowers, gifts and common courtesies, meets her needs for intimate conversation by talking with her at the feeling level and listens to her about the events of her day with sensitive interest and concern—all with a desire to understand her, meets her need for honesty and openness by looking her in the eye and telling her what he really thinks with clear plans and actions accountable to her to make her feel secure and build trust with her, meets her need for financial support by firmly shouldering the responsibility to house, feed and clothe their family, meets her need for family commitment by putting family first, engaging in activities with them, going on outings with them, doing house and yard chores together, and reading to them.
God’s outreach of Amazing Grace is really AMAZING! On Valentine’s Day in 1982, someone mentioned a girl from the Midwest. Since I was looking for someone to take to the annual departmental dinner that night, I inquired about her. She was athletic, petite and had a good personality.
Amazingly, we were married shortly thereafter thirty-three years ago. My bride is a beautiful brunette with hazel eyes of the dark green forest in Germany. King Ludwig of Germany chose the most beautiful mountains in the Bavarian Alps to build the most beautiful castle in the world called Neuschwanstein Castle (on the cover) and then they chose the most beautiful women in the world to be tour guides for the Castle and of course my new bride was one chosen to guide this Castle’s tours. I was marrying a famously beautiful woman!
Even as beautiful and joyful as she was when I met her, I had no idea that she would not only fulfill the companionship I needed but also encourage me to accomplish the career I had chosen and provide unceasing family support to our children to see them also become successful. Our family loves to spend time together because she is such a good encourager and relationship builder.
I could go on and on about her looks, the wisdom in her eyes, the common sense she has so she became the supervising nurse of the University Hospital only one year after she graduated, how many men have congratulated me on having a wife of such noble character, about how she was a triathlete in her youth, about her political prowess, her melodious cheerleaders voice, her listening ear, her home schooling dedication to get all four of our children all the way through high school and then through college, and how stable she has made our home with her attention to the details of all of us in the family. But now if you were to ask me what I appreciate most in my wife, it is her prayerful closeness to Jesus Christ of the Bible.
Here’s how faith developed in my wonderful wife. Two years into our struggling marriage we followed the advice of good friends and attended a church. There, week after week, solid Bible teaching made the 2,000 year old messages of the Bible current for her daily life. She now describes her faith as coming on slowly, something like a dimmer on a light switch gradually being turned on from darkness to low light at first and then turning brighter and brighter.
“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). My wife came to realize she needed Jesus as her Savior.
One important Bible concept that had meaning for my wife was “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:8-10).
Before my wife asked Christ to come in her life, she didn’t have any inclination to home school our children. But when she asked Christ into her life, God filled my wife with selfless dedication to take on that commitment. This was one of the “good works” God had created in my wife for her to do that she discovered she actually wanted to do after faith in Jesus had brightened in her life. I have observed and benefited by her transformation to the Christ-honoring ability to shoulder our children’s educational development through the thirty-plus years of marriage God has given us together. The confidence in her voice, light-gleam of her eye, ring of her words, joy of her heart, confidence, boldness and zeal in her relationships has blossomed through the life-giving abundance of Jesus Christ. To be in her presence is life-alteringly divine because Jesus shines through her.
When we look at ourselves, we don’t see what we can become with the help of Amazing Grace. But when God looks at us, He sees what we can become by His grace working through a loving spouse. And for me as a husband, I have found God’s chief instrument of grace is a loving Christ-centered wife. God must have known I needed a solid Christ-filled wife who was transformed into a selfless loving Christian to slowly, over time, help me change in the same direction.
Because I have been in her presence as she has changed, I have been slowly changed by God showing me His splendor in her. When one lives in the presence of an angelic person, she “wins you over.” I found that the love chapter of the Bible is true: “faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:13). She is the wife of “Noble Character” talked about in Proverbs who “opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue” (Proverbs 31:26). I would be such a fool not to want what she emulates. And I want to cherish her by completely giving her every support I can so she can keep on nurturing our children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
The heart-throbbing story of the Bible is the transaction between God and man when Jesus died on the cross and three days later arose from His grave to give us a chance at abundant life. I urge you, dear reader, to ask for Jesus, the Author of Amazing Grace, to come into your life wherever you find yourself now—to forgive you for your sins and for His salvation to become activated in your heart. Believe me, Jesus knows your greatest need for Amazing Grace love. “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9). I urge you to confess your sins out loud to God and ask Jesus to come into your life, read the Bible (I recommend starting with the book of John—the “microscope” on Jesus) and obey what the Bible speaks to your heart about. Next, fill your mind and heart with Christ: pray often, vigorously read the Bible, find a Bible-believing church that teaches the unaltered riches of the Bible, and tell someone else about the details of how Jesus is helping you.
At the writing of this true story, we have seen Amazing Grace grant us thirty-three continuous years of marriage currently with six children (two through marriage) who love God, and two grandchildren. My wife has prayed me through thirty-three years of professional service. My glorious wife home-schooled all the children all the way through high school and only one is still in college—the others already graduated from college with distinction. My dedicated wife was given a standing ovation at church for her twenty years of working with youth and children. My generous wife has encouraged and prayed over a dozen outreaches of our family to USA, Germany, Uganda, Philippines and Mexico. She adopted into our home a Japanese family who are now serving in central Asia. Now I know that the number one quality a man needs in his wife is a woman who is close to God. And I know that what she wants most is a man of integrity (who does the right thing when nobody else is looking) who is also close to God.
I think you can begin to see that my wife is God’s main means of transformation of my character. Because she reads and studies the Bible, prays diligently and pours out her inexhaustible Christ-reservoir of selfless love for all of our family, I am starting to catch on.
Please look again at the Neuschwanstein Castle on the front cover. Just before Jesus went through the brutal death and glorious resurrection away from His beloved disciples He told them, “In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also” (John 14:2-3). We cannot imagine what Jesus has prepared for us in heaven. If He pours out abundant life greater than our deepest longings to us here in this broken world, what greater does He have waiting for you in heaven if (and ONLY IF) you ask Jesus into your life. Then you and your family can become a part of America’s greatest resource—a family close to the heart of God. Thank you.