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5 Hard Things To Pray For Your Husband

Almost from the beginning of our marriage I prayed that my husband would become interested in being healthy. I wanted him around a long time. Well, I prayed for almost 9 years before he decided to try running. He fell in love with it, lost a lot of weight, strengthened his heart and was all around a much healthier and happier man.  Prayer works!

I am thankful for the number of good blogs, books, and conferences that are encouraging wives to serve their husbands according the Scripture with their unique gifts and callings and to pray for them regularly.  But this is not always easy work. In fact, some of the things we must pray for our husbands are hard in and of themselves.

Your husband doesn’t only need you to pray that he has a good day, is successful, and walks with Jesus. These are not bad requests, but are rather generic prayers that have too little specific direction behind them. What our husbands need from us are specific prayers, hard prayers, for their growth in godliness. I love my husband and I want what is best for him. And the best thing for him is to be a man who lives for the glory of God.

Here are five hard prayers I pray for my husband, and would encourage you to pray for yours.

1. Conviction of Sin

I pray that the Holy Spirit would never allow my husband to become numb to the sin in his life, but that he would convict him of his sin and remind him of his need for ongoing repentance and spiritual reformation. A convicted man will never be a proud man. A convicted man who finds God’s grace in Jesus will remain a thankful man. Pray that God continues to press in on the heart of your husband so that he remains sensitive to sin and the Spirit and continues in the way of godliness.

2. Humility of Heart

A proud man thinks too highly of himself, too little of everyone else, and has lost sight of God. A proud husband will not be open to necessary rebuke or correction, and will put himself first before others. But a humble man is teachable who, regardless of his temperament, will submit himself to the word of God. I pray that my husband will only continue to grow in humility as he follows Jesus, and that this would be one of the dominant marks of Christ in him.

3. Patience in Life

My husband wouldn’t mind me telling you that he is not naturally a patient man. But the lack of patience in a man is the marring of the image of God in him. God is patient with us in all our weakness and obstinacy, and we should all live lives that reflect this attribute of our Maker and Redeemer. And this is important because an impatient man is quick to complain, quick to become angry, and is therefore more likely to blame others, and even God, for what disturbs them. While my husband doesn’t get to that place, one of his greatest needs is to learn patience in life. Not just because God commands it, but because the kids (and I) need him to be patient. A patient husband is a man who knows he has received much more than he deserves, has been the recipient of God’s patience throughout his life, and who finds great joy in suffering well both the big things and the little things in life.

4. Love for God

I want my husband to love God more than he loves me or our children. Why? Because if he loved us more than God we would serve as his idols, and would eventually let him down. We are not good gods. But a husband who loves God above all other people in his life will treasure God and his good gifts. A man like that knows that outside of Jesus Christ his greatest earthly treasures are found in his home, in the wife of his youth and the children given to him by the Lord. I pray that my husband would love me less than he loves the Lord, and that his love for God would be intense and endless. I know if he loves God first, he will love me better than I can imagine.

5. Discipline from God

Do you ever feel like your husband is not walking on the right path? And I don’t mean you have to keep reminding him to pick his clothes up off the bathroom floor (Annoying, but not a crisis.). But there will be times when husbands, just like their wives, begin to drift in their affection, focus, and carefulness in their Christian walk. There will be times when we need God to intervene and discipline our husbands to get their attention, show them the danger of their sin, and rescue from the potential danger ahead of them.

When our husbands are doing well we should praise God but we should also pray that God would do whatever is necessary in order to keep the heart of our men focused on himself.

There is so much more than can be said of how we should be praying for our husbands, but let’s begin by committing ourselves to pray hard prayers for them. I hope my husband prays hard prayers for me as well.

Jen Thorn 

 Visit Jen at her blog, “Adorned.”

64 Comments

  • Heather

    Thank you so much for this post! I am convicted that I don’t pray enough for my husband and with the right focus. I will take these 5 areas and start lifting him in prayer and will see where God leads me from there. Thank you for being bold enough to share with us…you are a blessing!

  • Lindsay

    Wow. The first paragraph made me cry. I love this. I just need to stick with it. I’ll do good for a week, then just trail off and stop praying all together. Thank you for this. It hit home big time.

    • Renee Nieland

      Thank you for this! I always feel like my prayers for my husband are so repetitive and basic….this is going to be a great help in my prayer life! I am like one lady had said,I’ll do good for a week,praying every day and then life happens and I slip right back into “self” and feel like it’s all coming undone. The moment I remember to stop&pray I have peace again over whatever life issues I may be dealing with. If you read this,could you please pray for me? Thanks again for these 5 tips to better pray for my husband!

  • islem

    AWESOME post! WOW!! I am printing this out and placing it in my Bible. Praise be to God for the words He gives faithful women of faith to encourage the rest of us in the pursuit of a godly life and servanthood. What a joy!

    Quick question, in this sentence, did you mean *wife* of his youth?
    “A man like that knows that outside of Jesus Christ his greatest earthly treasures are found in his home, in the *life* of his youth and the children given to him by the Lord.”

    Grace to you!

  • Kris

    This message is speaking to my heart. I Needed to read these! Thank you for encouraging us to lift our Husbands up to The Lord.

  • Ted

    I am convicted of the need for the holy spirit in my life, and I ask my wife to read and pray in this manner for me. It’s true that no matter how great my love for her, if I fail to be sensitive to sin in my heart or fail to remain humble, I can not give her the love Christ commands of me. Thank you for this post from a Husband.

  • Ross

    First visit to the blog, but a very encouraging one. Thanks much for the well-written and very thoughtful article.

  • Liz

    How I needed this today. God is always on time. Thank you for these words! They have lifted me and pointed me in the direction. Thanks so much!

  • angela

    I am touched and inspired..just when i needed how to pray especially #convictionofsin.indeed i am starting a new path of prayers on my husby.thank you so much for this.

  • Becky

    I just purchased Lord Help Me 32 Ways to Pray for Your Husband. I haven’t finished it yet but I do like having more tools in my arsenal when it comes to praying for my husband. He’s not on the path I know God wants him on. I have been praying hard for that. Thank you for this. It’s much appreciated to have reference when words are lacking.

  • Annie

    I love this message content and though twas my boyfriend who sent me this link, I know I can start praying for him to be a better man who yearns for the Lord so by the time we are settled, the Lord will perfect all things in our lives.

  • Kay

    I agree with all of your points and appreciate this so much! I must admit that I am afraid tpmpray some of these. If God really gets my husbands attention I am afraid he will lose his job and our entire world willbe rocked. I know that is selfish but I have seen it before.

  • Sandy

    This is close to what I pray for my husband and our many sons. Along with Scripture…I love praying the Psalms over them…Blessed is Mark who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers…but his delight is in the law of the Lord and His law he meditates both day and night…Ps 1. I love Psalms 112 also.
    Thanks for sharing, praying for our husbands and children is so important.

  • Ruby Patterson

    when I became a Christian, I “prayed” the following for my husband:
    Ephesians chapters 1-4 and Philippians chapters 1-2, replacing certain pronouns with his name. For example, Ephesians 1:3, Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ who hath blessed ____ with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: (4) According as he hath chosen ____ in him before the foundation of the world, that ____ should be holy and without blame before him in love:
    The results were amazing!

  • Peter

    As a man of God and husband i agree that this is a good and encouraging article overall, but i have a couple problems with it.

    Though, it is true that I DO want ALL the things mentioned in your list, to me, it sounds more like a shopping list a wife wants for her husband than what a husband wants for himself.
    Again, as a man of God, as a husband, I DO want all those attributes that were mentioned, but the list seemed to have a negative tone throughout it. IE, either how the husband SHOULD be, SHOULDN’T be, how he should be corrected, convicted, and /or humbled.

    If i were to rewrite this list in a more positive way, i would make these 5 things the top 5 things to pray for.

    #1 Love for God
    (taken directly from #4 in the original article ) Yes indeed, that is my top priority in life – to love God more than anyone and anything else! Wives, please pray that your husband loves God the most, and that more importantly that he knows how much God loves him with so much eternal love and grace. When a person know how much God loves them, they will respond with love for God in return!

    #2 Divine encouragement. Wives, as you know, your husband has a tough job to be all that God calls him to be. IE, a godly man at work, in the community, in marriage, for the kids, in private….. and in order for him to be all that he is called to be, he needs the divine encouragement and empowerment that comes from God alone. God is the only true source of strength that enables a man to be a godly man. Pray that your husband recieves that daily encouragement/ empowerment from God and His Word that he needs. (Romans 15:4)

    #3 Stand strong. Every godly man wants to stand strong for what is most valuable to him. In essence, that sums up what it means to be a man no matter what walk of life : Standing strong for what is important. Not all men have bodily fortitude (aka muscles, muscles, muscles…) which is often the pride of a man to enable him to stand strong and enforce what he cherishes (ie, protect family, self, and values….)(And dont get me wrong, i dont believe that having muscles makes a man a MAN. i’m just using this as an example…) BUT … every man has strong conviction to some degree, and a will to stand strong for what he believes is important! There is true strength. Every man has a will, and no matter wht his physical stature, or how assertive he is, or lack of either quality, he WILL stand strong for what is important to him – and that will be his strength and glory! He DESIRES deep in his masculine heart to stand strong for what is important to him even against temptations and distractions. (Romans 5:1,2 … Ephesians 6:10) Wives, pray for your husbands that their desire to stand strong for wht is important ( ie Jesus Christ, their walk with God and their daily responsibilities, their marriage, family….) would stay strong in Christ!

    #4 Servant Leaders. Humility is more than a lack of pride, it is a heart attitude before God in relationship to Him. God calls all people to have the same mind/heart as our great Servant Leader, Christ Jesus (phil 2). Yet, men hear this call and respond in a special way – in their desire to be the best type of man and leader they can possibly be. Often times in the Bible, the word “calling” is defined by ‘an invitation to a bountiful feast’. And THAT is the calling to Servant Leadership in Christ. It is a bountiful feast of godliness, and godly men desire to take part in it by being a servant leader in all areas of life. Knowingly and often unknowingly, a man’s greatest desire is to hear the praise of their heavenly master over their life, “well done good and faithful servant!” This is truly a man’s greatest desire, and a godly man who knows it will live a life of humility willingly in servant leadership to hear those precious words spoken over his life . Wives, pray that Jesus Christ would be your husband’s greatest desire, that he would be hungry in every way to be like our great Servant Leader, Jesus Christ, and pray that your husband would be satisfied in his desire for great leadership in the bountiful feast of Christ-likeness.

    #5 A life of discipleship. One of the greatest calls Christ gives to all people is a life of discipleship in Him. Often times, “discipline” is thought of as punishment. But that is not correct. “Discipline” aka “discipleship” defined by God, even in light of correction, is always edification in Christ-likeness. As the writer describes in Hebrews chapter 12:1-13, God’s discipline of us(Christians) is as : sons/daughters, joy set before us , is for our encourgement in righteousness, is out of God’s love for us, for eternal life, for holiness, for our strengthening in Christ-likeness, and more! A man of God will pursue Christ, desires to serve Him, and will willingly take up his cross to recieve training in dicipleship – as an apprentice of Christ! Wives, pray for your husbands that their desire to be trained by Christ would be great! Pray that your husband would have a greater desire for a life of discipleship in Christ, and he will walk the walk, talk the talk, and love people as he should – under Christ.

    If you pray these 5 things for your your husband, you will see your husband as a growing man of God, and not as a man who needs to change.

    God bless!
    ~Peter

    • S

      I agree with Peter… This list does seem a little negative, and seems more of what a wife wants for a husband, rather than what is best to be a Godly husband. Love for God must come first.

  • Crystal

    Great list. #4 – I think you meant “wife of his youth”… Not life of his youth. Important distinction for readers. Love!

  • Susan

    Dear Jen,
    Thank you, so much, for allowing the Holy Spirit to work through your words. I have felt convicted about the prayers I have been praying for my husband for years. Generic is the perfect word to describe them. And I wonder why he is not as strong a Christian as I ‘think’ he should be.
    The 5 Hard Prayers are exactly what I should be praying for my husband. I will be printing this out and keeping it close, so that, I can pray for him throughout the day, effectively.
    Blessings on you and your home,
    Susan

  • Deana

    I’m so glad this popped up on my Facebook feed today. I’ve been concerned about my husband for quite some time now. He has bipolar disorder and is on disability for it — has been for over 16 years, and this is a man who used to work 50 + hours a week regularly. Since then, he has just STOPPED, pretty much. He has grown overweight, has stopped going to church (long ago), and mostly sits on the couch, watching TV, while I go out to work and our boys go to school (21-year-old to college, 16-year-old to high school). It’s like he has just given up and seems to expect me to do the bulk of everything sometimes. Sometimes he is good about helping out, but at other times, it’s like he just wants to be taken care of. Because of this, he seems to have abdicated his God-ordained status as head of the house. The boys have now fallen off on their church attendance too, so I am the only one going now (I play keyboard and sing in the choir too). I know that when he can’t/won’t be a proper husband to me, I must look to Jesus as my “head,” but I so want my own husband to be that “head” and to take his proper role. I understand that he can’t work outside the home anymore, and I understand this probably causes him depression, which is exacerbated by the mood disorder, but there are all sorts of things he COULD do around the house while I am at work, if only he would. I was telling God just this morning that I am often not sure HOW to pray for him, but God knows what we need before we even ask.

  • Eileen

    Great insight! We hear these things, but it’s nice to hear these very important messages in this way.

  • Jayne

    I am going to share this with my Bible study group. We meet to encourage each other in our marriages.

  • Kim

    It’s true I am feeling a little extra emotional these days but this made me cry because I realize the amazing potential and power if I commit to praying these things for my husband.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts – I’m sure we will meet up in Heaven some day so you can hear all about the fruits of these prayers!

  • Damaris Scalzi

    This post was divinely placed in my view. I appreciate the wise words and encouragement to pray more specific for my husbands needs in life. I would pray for a desire to live a balanced and harmonious life of order….especially because he’s in ministry. God, marriage, children then ministry to others outside the immediate family. God is glorified in His order not our own…and His blessing are never withheld to those that obey Him.

  • Corrine

    Thank you so much for this post. I have found that I to lack in my prayer life, like so many others. I hardly pray for myself or for my husband. Our church life has become nothing in the last several years. That is very sad to me. It started with my husband. He has MS and it affects many different things. But with these 5 prayers to pray for your husband… I will start now and see how thing change in our life. I will not only pray for my husband but for myself as well. Thank you so much for your insight.

  • Esther

    May I tell you that it IS truly possible for a man to exemply and live these traits? I have been married for over 55 years to a godly man who is my best friend, fun to be with, but is a very mature Christian who lives his life from very pure motives and wants, above all, to please the Lord…who has a consistent, rewarded prayer life…who goes the extra mile to show kindness to me….who is a caring friend to many…who makes things right when God prompts him….. who comforts me, prays with me, counsels me, in my struggles….is respected by many. I am most fortunate. And we have such men in several generations of our families–men a lot like him. So don’t give up; know that such men exist.

  • Ruth Drews

    Thank you for this recent post that got on my FB timeline somehow (divine intervention). I have been a christian all of my life. I have been a praying woman but when it comes to my husband, not in the way you have specifically noted. What you posted is not something new, but how you posted it has refocused my thinking/prayers; not just for my husband but also for my christians friends, family and myself. When you study the characteristics of God and how we are to mirror his character, then we should take each character trait and be praying that over our loved ones and self.

    Thank you for the reminder and the refocus on how to pray Christ-like…..

  • Viki

    I didn’t take the time to read ALL the comments, so it could have been mentioned already, but after scanning the article I believe we shouldn’t only pray these things for the husband we have, but if someone is single these prayers should be said for the HUSBAND-TO-BE . . . waaaaaay before you even meet him ! ! !

  • Susan

    We have been married for 48 years and this post taught me many things I should be praying for my dear husband. My partner for life and my heart. I have younger wives ask me for advice and thankfully I have learned a few things because a wife should be teachable and humble even when she doesn’t feel like it. (especially when she doesn’t feel like it). I am blessed to have a wonderful husband who knows me almost as well as God and almost always puts me ahead of himself. And he has a heart for others. This blog would be wonderful for engaged couples to learn. It would help a lot, especially in that first year.

    God bless you for sharing this in your post. Will be eagerly waiting for more.

    (John 14:27)

  • Blossom

    Thanks Jenny. Big thanks to Peter for his input. As a husband and minister, I admit he is right and expressed our hearts as many of us will not want to admit up front.
    Blossom

  • Morgan Russell

    I’m a 23 year old male married for 3 years and have been with my wife for 6, and I always assumed I knew what was right for me and my wife and the conviction from this has opened my eyes. I assumed I was always untouchable by life after my tour to Afghanistan. This I think is for men to read to and to translate into five points a man should pray for their wife. Thank you for your God inspired words.

  • Michelle Caskey

    Excellent post! Patience is such a hard (and scary) thing to pray for… But if we’re honest, most of us probably need more of it!

    Thanks for sharing these! 🙂

  • Iverna McAnulty

    Not only for our husbands, but for ourselves. Quite honestly, this sort of thing was MY ‘wish list’ for a long time while I agonized over my husband drinking himself to death. Mostly, for him, I prayed that someone would find a way to persuade him to find help. After 10 years of increasingly heavy drinking (I know now it was closer to 15 years), a church helped us get through the winter by delivering some firewood. One of the men who delivered the firewood asked questions, listened without condemning, and took the risk of inviting us to a Bible study at his house. I was shocked when I came home and my husband said he’d committed us to this Bible study! I left a church for a lot of reasons, but one of the biggies was that the pastor, who condemned not only my husband but me and our children for associating with him, kept urging (nagging) me to leave. I’d never condemn another woman for leaving. But my choice was based on my own understanding that I could, in the strength of God, endure an unhappy marriage because the purpose of marriage is to glorify God. After a few months, the Bible study held an intervention. There were many other factors, but I was finally given the words to say ‘as things stand, I don’t want to live with you’. He spent 18 months in a Christian, grace-based recovery program. I did not intend to spend that time jobless & homeless, nor did I have any idea that I’d have an accident that would shatter my right ankle (which hasn’t healed right), so I can’t even look for work…. but that’s what my cost was. Would I do the last 10-12 years again, if I knew what I know now? God only knows! That list did happen, but it certainly wasn’t my doing! Learning how to put things back together, God’s way, is not easy, and it’s slow, but we working at it.

  • Julie

    I am going to print this off and pray these prayers for my husband and include myself, also. We are both strong willed independent individuals and have forgotten those characteristics were positive early in our relationship, but can be stumbling blocks. We keep stumbling over them….over and over again.

  • Mary

    A friend sent this to me because I am in a trobked marriage. It has been long and hard. Deliverance, accountability and disciipline is needed for my husband. Confrontation has been done in past to no avail. I am praying the prayers you have posted similar t ones I have prayed in the past. Thank you. God DOES hear our prayers. It has been difficult on the receiving end, but G

  • Heath

    Great to pray for each other, but not like this. Not sure on a number of your points, but let’s pick at one in particular. The Holy Spirit does not convict a believer of sin (unbeliever…yes). He convinces him (believer) of his righteousness. We don’t live under the law, when live under grace. No way either of us would pray for each other is this way. Pray Hard? Praying is praying. You either belive what you talk to Jesus about, or you trying so hard to convince yourself and twist Gods arm! Again living under the law. So much more to say on this, but please please think again what you have typed on here. Love each other, encourage each other, edify one another, point each other to Jesus.

  • Lisa

    Thank you so much for this post!! I have been praying this prayer since you have posted it, and it has changed ME!! 🙂 I know a lot of times when we pray for someone else or something to change, the change really starts with us. But I have been so amazed at how I have been able to be more patient with my husband and children! God is working miracles!!

  • vickie foster

    Interestingly, these are the same points that I also pray for my children. I’ve been praying them randomly for my husband as well, for some time. Like one responder said above, a husband could pray them for his wife, but in the absence of that, I need to pray them for myself—not randomly, but written down in a list and hit upon systematically, as a soldier would gun down an enemy—because he is there, no doubt!

  • Kim Collins

    Excellent and very thought provoking…..
    I was wondering why do you consider these things as “hard”?
    Just a question.

  • Heshimu

    Pray for your own submission. This is vital. Everything else is rejected,unless wives pray for this,just as a husbands prayers are hindered,if he dirsnt seek love for his wife. 1 Pet 3:1-8

  • Maria

    I will pray this for my husband he has file for divorce, he is having an affair and needs of lots of prayers we have been marry 15 years we have 2 children I don’t want a divorce I want to save my marriage can you suggest any other prayers that will help.

  • Mandy

    I know what you mean! My husband and I were both unhealthy and together we worked to have a healthier lifestyle. Praying about our lives together truly transformed our motivation. I blog about it a lot and would love for you to check it out!

  • Claudia Mais

    This is just outstanding!! I’ve printed it to refer to and will keep it in my daily devotional to cross reference. I’ve been happily married for 25 years to my best friend and soul mate, but no marriage or person is perfect, so this will be a wonderful praying piecel. I even printed out copies to send to 2 dear friends, who have both been happily married to their spouses for almost 30 years. Thank you!!!!!!!

  • Elizabeth

    Thank you so much for the blog on praying for your husband. I don’t know if you can get a letter changed in the blog but life should be wife of him. For those not familiar with the passage in the Bible it could b confusing. Again thank you and may our God continue to Bless you as you write for Him to honor Him.

    • Darlene Schacht

      I think I see what you mean. I didn’t write the post, but looking at it now, I’m sure she meant to say, “wife of his youth.” I hope that’s what you meant. I have corrected it.

  • Feliz Buizon

    Thank you for sharing this. My challenge today is to identify one thing I will do daily to fight for my marriage. And to pray for my husband is it. Your post helped me do that today. Appreciated what you shared and also how it felt as I read, like you were just beside me. God bless you.

  • Laverna Stoll

    So when you told him that as things stand you couldn’t live with him, did you move out? And do you think that you became homeless and jobless because you were not supposed to move out? I ask because I’m in the same position. My husband has been either a heavy drinker or on drugs for 20 yrs. I’ve never felt I should leave him until lately and I’m wrestling with if this is from God or if it’s just because I’m so tired.