Think of your spouse more highly than yourself. Putting your spouse’s needs above your own builds equity in any marriage.
Taking time to celebrate us and our “woness” is something we live to do. So yesterday, we had an opportunity for an outing and we took advantage of it.
We really didn’t make any plans and neither of us were feeling something extravagant, so we just went on an impromptu lunch date.
Great company, fun conversation and time in each other’s gaze was all we needed to invest in our relationship bank.
Valentine’s Day is a special day for couples, married or not. However, if Valentine’s Day is the only day where a married couple is celebrating their “woness,” something is wrong.
The cards, chocolates, heart pillows and teddy bears are fine. But all this should be an expression of what has been going on throughout the year. In other words, the Valentines kindness should be an overflow of the sacrificial, selfless love that characterizes a healthy marriage.
So today, let your gifts be not a high point of your union but a reminder of the love that daily makes your “woness” special.
People who know us well, know that I’m an extrovert and my wife is an introvert. I require longer periods of socializing whereas my dear wife, contrary to popular belief, does like social interaction, but has to have it in spurts and needs time to decompress after long periods of socializing.
So how do we, as polar opposites on the socializing scale, make our marriage work during this time of quarantine? This also applies to couples who don’t normally spend a great part of their day together. I offer a few suggestions:
- Respect Each Other’s Differences
Respecting one another’s differences is important at any time but when you’re in lockdown mode it’s extremely important. I have to be aware of not “suffocating” my spouse and she in turn connects with me after she’s had her alone times.
- Be Willing To Communicate
In times of a quarantine when social interaction is limited, it’s important not to isolate yourselves further. It’s vitally important for us to communicate with one another if we need hugs, space, kisses or conversation.
- Be Attentive To Your Spouse
No matter how much “alone time” a person enjoys, we all need some amount of socializing. When this is not possible, feelings of isolation, anxiety and fear can squeeze like a vice grip. So it’s up to each spouse to be attentive to each other’s needs.
- Be Patient With Each Other
Being around each other more can feel like your spouse is in front of you every turn you take. This can feel a little like deja vu. It’s important to be patient with one another and try to somehow have fun with these situations.
- Say I Love You
The most important way to survive a time of social distancing is to tell each other “I love you” often. These three words can never be said enough and are the foundation to Twobecomingwon!
What are other ways for a marriage to survive an increased time together?
She’s beautiful. The kind of beauty that radiates from the inside.
She loves life and loves speaking life to others!
She’s analytical. She’s often deep in thought about a lot of things.
She’s an introvert but she loves that even though I’m an extrovert, I respect her need to withdraw at times.
She loves family and would do anything for her family.
She’s a motivator and deeply enjoys helping others reach their personal and fitness goals one on one.
She has the loudest, cutest laugh in any room! But it’s a joy to see her enjoying herself.
She always has a sacrificial kind of love.
She always believes in me and makes me feel strong.
In short, I love her because she means everything to me!
So this past Mother’s Day, I tried to do more stuff around the house so that that my wife, and mother of our kids, could just relax. While my wife enjoyed her cards, flowers and lunch, she also had arranged her empty Clinique products on the bathroom counter for full display. “I don’t ask much, just for some observation,” she said as she swept her right hand as to uncover a prize.
At that moment, I felt like I was three days late for the prom! So I went into “fix it mode,” because that’s what men do, right? I told her that I would get new products but she told me not to bother, that she would do it.
This incident portrays a stark difference between men and women: women want men to notice things they need whereas men want to be told what women want or need.
A woman’s desire would be for her husband to be observant and proactive in both noticing and fulfilling some wants. This lets the woman know that she is being thought of. Unfortunately, most men aren’t wired this way. Most men would be happy to fill a need once they are asked.
Knowing and understanding these differences is of vital importance in a marriage. It prevents misunderstandings, unrealistic expectations and disappointments. It is also important to be able to discuss these differences with grace, patience and without setting ultimatums. This allows for healthy communication and may also help each person to be more sensitive to each other’s needs.
So how did this play out? Well, she never did go to get her Clinique products. So I assured her that I would take care of it and I did! Now she’s all set…and I’ll try to be more intentional on being observant.
My wife and I are passionate about marriages and would love to see all marriage relationships become strong and fruitful.
So how exactly do we allow this passion to be expressed? Well, we believe that one of the most meaningful ways in which our love for marriages is demonstrated is through prayer. I suppose there or two questions that can be asked to the above; one is “why do you pray” and the other is “what do you pray?”
To answer the why, we believe that as the creator and designer of marriages, God is intensely passionate about marriages. This is evidenced by the imagery depicted in scriptures of the church being the bride of Christ, who is the groom.
As far as the what, there are actually three main areas for which we pray when we come to God:
1. That God bless marriages
2. That God would put a stop to the enemy’s attack on marriages
3. That God would strengthen struggling, strained and broken marriages with His hand of restoration.
We hope that our commitment to see marriages become victorious gives you some degree of comfort. We hope and pray that your marriage is healthy and strong.
What is your prayer for marriages?
Gentleness, kindness, and self-control will produce more fruit in a marriage as a post to sarcasm.
Being the first to apologize after an argument shows more strength as opposed to expecting your spouse to do it first.
Occasionally in the hustle and bustle of everyday life couples can forget the seemingly small, insignificant stuff. However, there are three words that should, without a doubt be said multiple times a day to each other.
Saying “I love you” daily is good for yourself, your spouse and for your “woness.” So whatever you do, start and finish the day with these three important words.