Executive Director at the HomeWord Center for Youth and Family at Azusa Pacific University and a partner at DownloadYouthMinistry.com
Served for more than 30 years as a Youth Pastor and Teaching Pastor for Mariners’ Church and Saddleback Church
Author of 50+ books, his latest, 7 Ways to Be Her Hero (2014), the award winning Purpose Driven Youth Ministry, and Your First Two Years in Youth Ministry
Married to Cathy for 30 years
3 grown children: Torie, Cody, and Cassie
MDiv from Fuller Theological Seminary
Doug Fields: 7 Ways to Be Her Hero
The 700 Club
Doug was in the 9th grade when he went to a Christian youth group because there was a comedian and cute girls there. When the comedian finished he described the difference between laughter and joy and invited people to find joy through relationship with Jesus. Doug went home and entered into a relationship with God. He read the New Testament cover to cover and was fascinated with Jesus and pursued Christian ministry. While working as a youth pastor, Doug met a girl named Cathy and soon after they were married. Doug went on to become a youth pastor and teaching pastor at Rick Warren’s Church, Saddleback Church and later Mariner’s Church. He stepped out of church ministry and became the executive director at the HomeWord Center for Youth and Family at Azusa Pacific University. Doug still wakes up every morning thinking about how he can help youth but he noticed that he can best help them more effectively by helping their parents. He realized that the best way to help youth’s parents was the help them with their marriages, the very core of the family. This inspired Doug to focus more of his time on helping couples make their marriages work.
BECOMING HER HERO
Doug believes that most men feel like they are decent at their jobs and being a parent, but they usually don’t feel like a good husband. He reveals there is a desire to be a good husband but most men just don’t know how. He puts it bluntly, “We know we suck, but we don’t want to suck any more. By the end of our lives we will be glad to know we were our bride’s occasional heroes and that we tried our best. That is the key theme of a hero. They try.” Doug points out that good marriages require effort from both people but if a man can become a better husband that it will significantly change the overall marriage. He reveals 7 ways that men can grow and become the hero they want to be.
MARRIAGE ADVICE FOR MEN
Falling in love comes naturally for most people but staying in love proves to be a much more difficult task. However, Doug believes that with some skills and a plan, marriages can thrive and not just survive. One of the key principles that he teaches is the importance of oneness; that God’s goal for marriage is for two people to become one. He labels it the one heart principal, saying that, “…in marriage, when I wound or hurt or trample on my wife’s heart, I am really doing the same to my own heart. Or the more positive way to look at it is this: when I enhance my spouse’s heart, I am really enhancing my own at the same time.” Doug also believes that it is extremely important to chase and continue to chase after your wife. He reveals how most men are chasing after success, more money, or promotions. He says, “...if you are chasing after anything else at the expense of oneness with your wife, you are chasing the wind. Chasing after the wind will leave you empty and unsatisfied with life and your marriage.” He believes that many people are overcommitted and under connected. In the past, husbands weren’t as interconnected through social media so when they came home they left work at the office.
Now, husbands come home and are still connected to work and it is more difficult for them to disconnect from work and engage their wives. Doug believes that busyness is usually a sign of brokenness because commitments point back to someone saying, “yes” to something. He reveals that whenever someone says “yes” to something they are saying no to something else. Marriages would benefit a lot more if people were not committing themselves to so many other things and were more focused on connecting with their spouses.
Another very important principal Doug highlights for husbands is; “Don’t say everything you think.” He teaches that not everything that comes into your mind needs to be said. He encourages men to be more careful with their words and to speak affirming words to their wives. He believes women have a need for unconditional love, which is fostered through communication and emotional intimacy. Part of that communication is listening. Doug teaches that it is important for men to listen to their wives, but that listening is more than just hearing. He teaches that listening is asking questions, paying attention to what is being said, showing receptive body language, and talking the right amount. Doug is also a huge believer that it is the small things that you do for your wife that really matter. He smartly states, “…the neglect of doing little things is likely what led to the big issues, and it is the little things that can lead to big change!” He charges men to not just do occasional extravagant acts but to focus on doing the smaller acts like going to dinner where she wants to go or helping her put away the groceries. The big things like buying her a car or taking her on an expensive vacation don’t require you to be a servant and are not always as meaningful. Doug talks about how pride is one of the largest issues men have in marriage. He reveals how many men will not humble themselves and be teachable or wrong. He believes that becoming humble is not only biblical but also very attractive to women, a sign of strength, and better helps connect two people. Lastly, Doug feels it is very important for a husband to shepherd his wife’s heart. He explains that shepherding is simply watching over and tending to her emotionally. Doug calls men to step up to the plate and be the husband that God is calling them to be and watch God give their marriage longevity and passion.
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