Monthly Archives: February 2015

Things Are About to Get Better

Today’s post is different than most. First some news then a chance for you to give your opinion.

The News You Need

Over the next 90-120 days we will be making significant improvements to We will still have our regular husband focused blog but we will be adding many other great resources. Possibly a second blog that is not just for the guys that includes marriage and personal growth material.

We are looking at perhaps a set of recommended resources that Troy has been using. This may include books, podcasts, events and such. Even tips for taking care of your body may be included.

We really want to turn the into a destination to grow your marriage, your spirit and your health. In addition we will be offering marriage coaching packages to take our personal experience and work directly with you to help you have an AMAZING marriage!

Did I mention a total website redesign is also in the works?

Where You Come In

We have ideas and are praying…but we are looking for input. If you have suggestions or thoughts about content or would like to see some specific topic(s) covered then we want to know!

The first change will start right away. We will be modifying the days we release new blog posts. So no more Wednesday and Sunday posts…our studies show that to reach and help more people Monday and Tuesday are the best days. So look for our next new post this coming Monday!

To give us your input just comment below, hit me up on Twitter @happierhusband or

I am VERY excited about the improvements you are all going to see!

Thanks and love you all!



Are You Living in Fear…of Your Spouse?

My wife is 5 feet tall. Not 5’9”, 5’7”, 5’5” or even 5’3”. She is 5 feet even. When we stand she fits perfectly under my chin. I have bench pressed more than her weight. She is beautiful, sweet, kind and loving…and small. I love her size, it fits her perfectly.

You Wouldn’t Think

With the above description you would never think I could fear her. Not that she isn’t strong; she works out and has some significant muscle mass. But there are times when I have fear related to her. Not physical fear but fear just the same.

The Story

Recently I’ve been reading Dan Miller’s book 48 Days to the Work You Love. It is a great way to learn how to find work that is fulfilling and matches up with your passions and skills. I’ve learned very much and have begun listening to Dan’s podcast. It is filled with success stories of people who have found work they love as well as answers to questions for those still looking.

If you were reading this blog back in September of 2014 you know that my lovely bride and I went on a personal focus retreat with a small group from our church. One big take away from that retreat was that marriage coaching is an area that I need to move into. Since then we have done marriage mentoring certification with a Les and Leslie Parrott program and it was great! But we haven’t really done much on the coaching side.

What I Want to Do

The podcast and website for Dan Miller both referred to a live event called, “Coaching with Excellence”. It is two days of intensive coaching training with experts and about 40 other people from around the world. Do you know it is just south of Nashville, Tennessee in a beautiful country area inside of a converted barn called “The Sanctuary”? Plus it’s in late May, a perfect time to be in Tennessee. Not to mention the fact that we could stay a couple of extra days and celebrate our anniversary there. Are you waiting for the catch? Here it is: after everything the total cost will be a significant amount of money.

The Reason for My Fear

I KNOW we don’t just have that extra money lying around. But I firmly believe that long term the money will be an investment to help many other couples have amazing marriages. In addition I know that by serving others in this way and honoring His gift in our marriage by sharing it that God will bless us. However I was afraid to talk to Sally. She works hard to keep our financial house in order and does a fantastic job! I didn’t want to cause her difficulty and I knew we had a budget. So the fear was simply about doing something that would throw us off balance and make it harder on her.

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord you God will be with you wherever you go.

-Joshua 1:9

The Conversation

I danced around the issue for some time. Then we were both given free access to a recording of a conference call that explained more about the live event. It was very compelling to me. I could hear the Lord speaking through that recording that we needed to go to the event. So in the evening I asked if she had a chance to listen to the recording and she had. I then told her I thought we needed to go. Do you know what she said? She told me where to get the money to pay for it. She was all in! In fact she started working on the pre-event packet even before I did.  It was so cool. Clearly God was in this.

What Cured the Fear?

Do you know what cured the fear? Belief. Just belief. I believed that it was going to help others, it would help us and it would honor God. We need to all remember how we grow as people. Our beliefs determine our actions and our actions determine our results. If your beliefs are strong enough then you can’t hold back!

The Wrap Up

I think there are three important points to take from this experience:

  1. Sometimes you will feel fear when you need to talk to your spouse.
  2. The strength of your beliefs will allow you to overcome the fear.
  3. The conversation will almost never turn out the way you fear.

So the next time you strongly believe that something needs to be changed or you feel God calling you into an area I’ll give you a suggestion. Just start the conversation immediately.

Fear feeds on time.

-Grant Cardone in The 10X Rule.

Your spouse loves you and wants the best for you and your family. So jump in and talk…perhaps you will change the future of many people!

Love you all!


What Do You See?

I want you to think back to when you first met the woman who would become your wife. What did you notice? A beautiful smile? An alluring figure? Eyes filled with kindness? An irresistible laugh? Perhaps more than one of the above.

Let your wife be a fountain of blessing for you. Rejoice in the wife of your youth.

-Proverbs 5:18

Beauty is Not in the Eye

One of the challenges of being a man is seeing beyond the looks of another person. We are by default drawn to physical beauty. It is in fact highly likely that one of the primary reasons you asked your wife-to-be on your first date…because she caught your eye. There are many beautiful women in the world and you are married to one. It doesn’t matter whether she is 19 or 99, she is a beautiful person. It’s not what you see with your eye that matters, it’s what you know in your heart to be true.

Charm is deceptive and beauty fleeting, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
-Proverbs 31:30

A Reputation…and a T-Shirt

I have a reputation with Sally’s family in Michigan. You see I frequently refer to my lovely bride as “hot”. A few years ago we were gathered together at their cottage near Kalkaska, MI (if you are ever looking for the cottage I believe it is right next to Heaven) exchanging early Christmas gifts over Thanksgiving weekend. When I opened my present I laughed out loud! It was a t-shirt that said,”I Love My Hot Wife”. But that wasn’t the end. When Sally opened her gift it was also a t-shirt, that said “I’m Troy’s Hot Wife.” Too funny!


Where True Beauty Lives

My wife IS a beautiful woman. She works hard every day with her eating habits and regular exercise to maintain the amazing body that the Lord has given her for this life. But true beauty isn’t in a lovely face or a stellar figure. True beauty lives in the spirit of a person. As most of you know I am a firm believer in good health and maintaining the physical strength that the Lord has given you for as long as possible. But a person is so much more than the body they inhabit. Every person is a child of the Most High King.

The Love of Your Life

Your wife is not her body, but her body is important to you and to her. You need to love her as a whole person, body, soul and spirit. Tell her how beautiful she is, compliment her on her love for others, encourage her as she volunteers her time for service. Never let a change in a person’s physical health or appearance keep you from finding the beauty inside. We are all spiritual beings living in physical shells. It is critically important to care for the whole person. Don’t only pay attention to the body, but love the spirit inside.

Help Her Grow in Beauty

As you and your bride watch the days and months of your marriage turn into years and decades things will change in both of your bodies. You can do many things to improve the process…in fact in our 40s Sally and I are both in MUCH better health and shape than we were in our 20s. But one of the interesting things about aging is this: to the world people lose their beauty as they grow older…but if we spend more time in the Presence of the Lord then as we age we become more and more beautiful in spirit. I challenge you as the spiritual leader in your home to do everything you can to help her grow in beauty, while you do the same.

A wife of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.
Her husband has full confidence in her
and lacks nothing of value.
She brings him good, not harm,
all the days of her life
-Proverbs 31:10-12

Love you all!



Don’t Break Her Heart…or the Bank

This post is being written on Valentine’s Day. I have to start by saying that I’m not a fan. Not that I don’t like love and romance, but I don’t enjoy the pressure of having a specific day dictated by society for them.

A Typical Valentine’s Day

As you know my lovely bride and I are deeply and wildly in love. But we have never been huge into Valentine’s Day. As a general rule we go out for dinner, get each other nice cards expressing sincere sentiment and exchange some small gifts.

This Year

Interestingly enough this year was different…but only in a single aspect and we both were pleased. We still went out for a meal and I gave her a small gift, while she gave me a few small gifts. But I was so excited to give mine to her because it was attached to a card. But not just any card, I made this card myself. I channeled my inner 3rd grade boy, cut out colored paper hearts, wrote in multiple marker colors and made silly kid-type jokes. Oh, I also taped a plastic spoon to the back (because attached was a gift card to an ice cream shop).

The Kicker

I was excited to be a little kid giving away a handmade card to the girl I love. But here is the REALLY fun part. In the basket with the gifts she gave me was a card…handmade as well! It was decked out with a heart made of half lace and construction paper, had words and phrases from sections cut out of magazine ads and even a picture of flowers. She went all out! I loved it!! (Note that she called the card she made “Stalker Style”…it’s an inside joke J)

The Point

It really doesn’t have to be an expensive proposition to express heartfelt love. I would treasure a card from her own hand much more than one someone else wrote. In addition it showed her individual personality and whimsical style, two things about her that I love greatly. When the occasion arises, whether a holiday or any other precious day with your lady give her a gift. But don’t worry about the cost…only that it is a true gift from your heart.

The Card

The first picture is the front and back, the second picture is the inside. It makes me feel very happy and loved!




Love you all!



How to a Have a Dynamic Marriage

Early this morning I was reading from the Gospel of Luke and in part of the passage the following words of Jesus were recorded, “And so I tell you, keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.” – Luke 11:9-10

This is an important passage to me and many other Christians. It is Jesus teaching on the subject of persistence in prayer. Here Jesus teaches me to keep asking in prayer…even beyond when I feel like quitting. I’m learning and growing in this principle.

Before That

Even before reading that section of scripture I had already done a Joyce Meyer devotional based on Psalm 17:22 with the title, “A Happy Heart is Good Medicine.” Between the devotional and the passage above I watched two short (less than two minutes each) YouTube Christian motivational videos.

During the Day

While driving to the gym and work I listened to a podcast on how to grow an Internet business from Jeremy Frandsen and Jason Van Orden. During a couple of periods of down time I was reading the book, The Answer by John Assaraf. Oh! I almost forgot that I read two blog posts, one from Dan Miller called “Jobs Come and Go – But Beauty and Grace Continue” and “Stop Waiting to Make Perfect Decisions” by Jon Acuff.

A Bit of Sally’s Day

Today Sally spent time reading scriptures. She is also reading a wonderful book by Lysa Terkuerst titled, “Your Best Yes.” Like me she listened to a podcast Jeremy and Jason. She read the same blog posts from Jon Acuff and Dan Miller. Tonight we will take some quiet time together to do a devotional for married couples before we pray and go to sleep.

Both of us are regularly reading, listening to and or watching information that will help us grow personally. In addition we have written down goals and posted things we plan to do together.

What We Talk About

Do you know what we talk about? We talk about the normal things, jobs, money, what to have for dinner, our workouts, errands that must be run and groceries that must be purchased. Do you know what else we talk about? We talk about the exciting things we learned from watching, reading and listening. We talk about goals and dreams and specific plans to accomplish them.

The Result

We have some times where things are a bit down and challenging. But honestly all of the growing and sharing keeps our marriage fresh and new! As you probably already know Sally is my best friend. I love spending time with her, talking and sharing. In addition my greatest periods of growth have occurred because she helps me to move past obstacles. When I am at my weakest times I open my heart and she fills me with encouragement and hope. As she grows and learns she shares what she has discovered to help me grow. Not only our relationship but our finances and business plans are improved because of this continual personal and spiritual growth.

What About You?

Is your marriage a dynamic event? Do you and your spouse share about things you are learning and discovering during your personal times of study and growth? Or perhaps all of your conversations revolve around the mundane daily details of life. Now, those conversations are necessary. Dishes must be done, children must be chauffeured, meals must be made and clothes must be washed. But are you both, individually and as a couple, intentionally growing as you move throughout your days? Are you purposefully seeking out materials that will make you a stronger Christian, better spouse and parent, more efficient in your work or business, and learning better how to help others? If you are then let me applaud you! No kidding…I just applauded you out loud (good thing Sally isn’t here right now, she might think I’m losing it :-)).

It’s Time to Grow

If you aren’t growing and sharing about your growth it’s not hard to change. Start small, read a few passages in the Bible and ask the Lord to help you grow. Read at least 10 minutes a day in a book that will improve some aspect of your life. Instead of listening to sports, music or talk radio as you drive play a podcast or audio book to help you develop. Sit down and come up with a goal you would like to accomplish together and write it down. Take a few minutes at night to read a devotional and pray together. These activities can take an average marriage and turn it into one that is fun, intellectually stimulating, financially improving and spiritually powerful. They can give you the dynamic marriage you crave!

You can do it!

Love you all!


Who Are You Talking To?

Earlier today Sally and I were at a dinner following a funeral for the mother of a close friend. At one point I walked up to her talking to another person as Sally said, “There is very little that Troy and I don’t do together.” She is absolutely correct and the reason is that she is not only my wife, she is my best friend.

Best Friends?

Let me ask you a question. Who is your best friend? No, no, no, not the one you tell everyone. Who is REALLY your best friend? Do you know the simple way to tell a person’s best friend? With whom do they voluntarily spend time? Who is their go-to person? That is their best friend, no matter what they say. I pray it is your wife.

What About the Guys?

There is nothing wrong with having friends who are not your spouse. It’s incredibly healthy to have a good group of friends. But here is what isn’t healthy: complaining about your wife to your friends.

The Unjustified Justification

Let me guess what you may be thinking, “When I get together with my friends we all talk about our wives. It’s just what guys do.” Well it’s true that is what many men do. It is very common. If you want an average marriage (or worse) then feel free to keep whining about what your wife does or does not do to everyone but her.

If another believer sins against you, go privately and point out the offense. If the other person listens and confesses it, you have won that person back.

-Matthew 18:15

The Better Way

In the above verse Jesus says the first step in conflict resolution is to talk to the person with whom you have the conflict. If there is something in your marriage that is bothering you then go to your wife…not another person. You likely wouldn’t go gossiping nor complaining about your best guy friend to other guys, shouldn’t you show the love of your life even more respect and courtesy?

In Transition

I know this one is a bit hard hitting but it’s an important issue. In television you often see men sitting around putting their wives down. It’s almost a contest to see who has the worst story. You don’t want to be that guy.

Wrap Up

I honestly think you should talk about your wife when she isn’t around. I think you should go out of your way to do so. But it needs to always be uplifting and complimentary. Others need to know how much you love and appreciate her. Especially your children. You want to be a great dad? Tell your kids how much you love their mother! Show them by your actions. Be THAT guy!

Now go talk up your wife.

Love you all!


What Does She Know?

Sally (my lovely bride) and I have a lot of conversations. Well, that should be obvious as we ARE happily married. But I don’t mean conversations about the normal day to day activities. We certainly have those. Something interesting has been happening in our conversations in the past year and a half or so and I really like it.

The Background

Over the course of our 23+ years of marriage we have moved through times of high busyness and other, slower periods. Raising children took (and still occasionally takes) a lot of time, effort and emotional energy. Other areas in life, work, church, home based businesses, time with family and friends also had similar requirements. We have always been close and made it a priority to care for and love each other but we didn’t always have great depth of conversations.

Things Change

As regular followers of this blog know the two of us are in a transitional phase of our lives. God has removed some things which used to have great focus and is moving us into new directions without a lot of details. It feels something like what Matthew must have experienced:

As Jesus went on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector’s booth. “Follow me,” he told him, and Matthew got up and followed him.
-Matthew 9:9

The Bible doesn’t indicate that Matthew asked any questions but I just have to wonder, did Matthew consider where he was going? Did he question where Jesus might lead? Was he excited, apprehensive, filled with anticipation or fearful? Or did he simply trust in the One?

We find ourselves in a “follow Me” moment and are working through the ramifications. It’s an interesting time. But that’s not the complete point of this post.

An Unexpected Result

One of the areas Sally and I have been very intentional about over the last several months is praying together. If you’d like to see why this is critically important check out the post 22 Years of Failure. The regular prayer, along with the life changes have led to an unexpected but wonderful result. We spend more time talking about not only our current circumstances, but also our future hopes and dreams. In addition we are both opening up in a deeper way about things outside of our relationship. Things that are good and things that are challenges.

You Need to Know

Now I’m not saying that Sally and I never had these kinds of conversations. But the difference is simple…we have them very often now. It’s pretty amazing. Let me ask you a question. Do you know your spouse’s secret hopes and dreams? The ones they are almost afraid to admit to themselves because they don’t believe they are even possible. Do you know her passions? The things that really get her excited to accomplish? You need to know them. Recently Sally and I were having a couple of deep discussions which had three results. 1) I learned things that she really enjoys that even she had not really remembered and 2) I explained an area that she knew I was struggling with but she didn’t really understand why. 3) I found out something she has regretted never completing for many years.

Be the Catalyst

Here is why you MUST have conversations about where you have frustrations as well as your hopes and dreams. First, you can help to relieve areas of frustration. Just sharing them with Sally eased the burden somewhat. In addition she was all for making whatever change is necessary to remove the problem. This had nothing to do with our relationship, but because it was important to me it was important to her. In addition your wonderful wife may have given up on her private hopes and dreams. She may have resigned herself to a life of mediocrity and acceptance that what she so passionately desires, a dream given to her by God will never happen. But YOU can believe for her. You can tell her that it is possible. You can hold her hand and start down the path together. You can be the catalyst for her dreams!

Cheerleader in Chief

Marriage isn’t just about love and devotion. Marriage is also about support and encouragement. You need to be your spouse’s biggest cheerleader! But in order to do so you need to know what she really dreams about. That’s why you need to have these conversations. You don’t really know a person until you know what they ache for that no one else understands.

In Closing

In order for a marriage to grow both parties need to grow individually and as a couple. People grow by going through challenges and accomplishing goals and dreams. You will grow closer to each other by giving hope and being an encourager for your spouse. When you know her dreams you know her. When you help her reach them you show her more love!

Love you all!






The End of Compromise

The following post is an updated version of the second ever post that was published on I think this is a tremendously important topic and so wanted all of our new readers (and the original clan) to get a fresh new look at it!

The Premise

This is going to really annoy a lot of marriage counselors and relationship experts.  I don’t think compromise is healthy in a marriage.  Ah.  At this point YOU are annoyed and thinking, “This guy has lost his mind!”  All of your life you’ve been told that relationships require compromise.  I give a little, you give a little and it’s all good. But in my experience it is NOT all good. If you want a truly happy marriage with little or no resentment then compromise is a no go. Read on…

What is Compromise?

According to Merriam-Webster compromise is: “a way of reaching agreement in which each person or group gives up something that was wanted in order to end an argument or dispute.”  Sound like how you want to run your marriage?  ”Ok honey, last time I gave up something, now it’s your turn.” or “Someone needs to watch the kids, so I don’t go play softball with the guys this week and next week you don’t get to see your sister.”  Really?  I don’t think so.

Don’t Compromise – Serve

Here is the heart of the issue.  Compromise means what I want is just as important, or more important than what you want.  In a compromise situation no one comes out happy.  Do you want a happy marriage?  Stop compromising and start serving.

Being a servant means the other person’s needs and wants come before your own, whether you like it or not…at first.  Let’s take a look at scripture.  In Matthew 26:39 we find this prayer from Jesus to the Father:

Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.

Jesus Didn’t Compromise…True Servants Never Do

Jesus asked the Father more than once to not go to the cross.  He knew what was coming, the pain, rejection, abandonment and finally death.  But He was a Servant.  A servant doesn’t compromise, a servant serves.  A servant does what the Master requires whether he or she likes it or not…at first.  Do you think that when Judas came with the crowd to arrest Jesus that He said, “Ok Father, I’ll take the arrest and the trial, even the whips, but the cross is just too much.  Let’s compromise.”  No, no, a thousand times no!  Jesus served God and us by NOT compromising.

Keeping Your Covenant

Let’s bring this home.  You married a wonderful woman.  You promised something along the lines of, “love honor and cherish.”  Did you promise to compromise?  Nope.  When you marry someone, when you make that covenant, you are saying, in essence, “I choose to serve you.”

You are the man.  According to Paul husbands are “love your wives as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her.”  So stop compromising and start giving yourself up for her.  I promise you will get more back than you EVER would by compromising.

Note: Compromise IS important in some relationships, such as keeping countries from going to war or between political parties, but these relationships are not based on love.  That’s the difference.

Now go love and serve her!