How to Encourage Your Spouse in Using Spiritual Gifts

This month, we’ve discussed love, both for God and for others. Today, as part of Marriage Monday, we’re going to narrow our focus to a specific way of loving our spouses: encouraging them to develop and use their spiritual gifts. Here are a few everyday ways to encourage your spouse in the area of spiritual gifts.

Encourage Him to Take Development Opportunities

When you see a class, conference, or book that could help him develop a sub-skill of his spiritual gift, encourage him to take the opportunity. Not, “You need to take that class! No excuses. Go sign up now!” That’s being pushy. Encouragement is affirming. “Honey, you are great at _____. I saw the way _____ responded last week. I think this could be a great opportunity for you to sharpen your skills.”

Sometimes my husband takes my suggestion and sometimes he doesn’t. The important part is really in the encouragement.

Pass Along Service Opportunities

If you hear of a service opportunity that really fits her giftedness, let her know. If it’s a better fit than some of the ministries she’s currently involved with, help her make room in her life and schedule to pursue the passions God’s placed on her heart. This is for everyone’s benefit.

Pray with and for Him about God’s Mission

Sometimes we assume that because God has placed us somewhere in the past, we’re always to remain there. Biblical record gives plenty of examples to the contrary. Your spouse’s spiritual gifts aren’t going to change, but God’s “assignment” for where and how those gifts are used may. Encourage your spouse to continually pray about God’s mission for him, to ask God if he is where God wants him. Be ready for change if the answer is no.

Offer to Do Legwork or Fill a Support Role

Maybe she’d really like to attend that training session, but she’s too busy with the kids to make the phone calls or buy her ticket. Offer to make arrangements for her.

Or maybe he’s finally going to finish his college degree. Let him know you can print off his application or buy his textbooks.

I recently began leading a small group for teen girls at our church. My husband isn’t involved with the group, but I see it as his ministry, too, because he takes on full-time dad duty when the group meets. I am confident that my daughter will be OK, so I can give my attention to the girls.

Affirm His Effectiveness

My primary love language is words of affirmation. So I feel good all over when someone takes the time to detail their appreciation of me or my service. But even those who thrive on other love languages sometimes need to hear they are doing well.

Tell him how his spiritual gifts have affected someone else in the church. Or observe how his gifts have blessed your family or any other group of Christians. Basically, you’re saying, “You’re gifted at _____. Here’s how I know.” Be specific.

9 thoughts on “How to Encourage Your Spouse in Using Spiritual Gifts

  1. So nice to meet you Rachelle!

    Recognizing our spouse’s gifts and encouraging them to use their gifts is a privilege we all have in marriage. After all, we know our spouses better than anyone!

    Thanks for joining us for Marriage Monday today.

    Blessings, e-Mom

  2. These are really helpful reminders, Rachelle. We really need to show support for the full development of our spouse’s gifts.

    I can say that affirmation is indeed an effective love language.

    Thank you for sharing your words of wisdom. God bless!

  3. You really make some great points! Encouragement is foundational to us as human beings, how much moreso then to our spouses! Ministry callings are definitely a team effort. Dave has natural athletic abilities, I on the other hand do not have an athletic bone in my body. Dave has a sports ministry, coaching a men’s softball team which has led to mentoring, etc. I go to all his games, cheering him on, chatting with the wives and support him in his ministry. Could he do it without me? Certainly, but it’s an opportunity to share something together, support him and encourage his heart to continue serving.

    You are so right in knowing where to practice your gift. A person can grow discouraged and frustrated if they’re not in the right fit. A person might have the gift of teaching but it might not necessarily be teaching 5 year olds! Evaluating our personality and the season of life we are in, are important if we want to be effective in kingdom building!

    Have a blessed Thanksgiving,

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