Friday, September 13, 2013

#261 - Part 1: Fueling a Marriage That Will LAST!

Proverbs 31:12 - She comforts, encourages, and does him only good as long as there is life within her.
Proverbs 31:17 - She girds herself with strength [spiritual, mental, and physical fitness for her God-given task] and makes her arms strong and firm. 
In a recent conversation, my husband was telling me about a minister he was listening to. This minister said, "I love God more than I love my wife. But....... she also loves God more than she loves me!"

It is the key ingredient to a long & successful marriage. How would you respond if I posed the question to you? "Do you love God more than you love your spouse? Your children?"

Why is it so important to love God first? When you love God first and foremost, you will love your spouse how God would want you to love them, even on those days when they may be unbecoming, unattractive, frustrating. When you love God first and foremost, you will find ways to show love to your spouse, to make them feel special, to meet their needs.

THIS IS CRUCIAL! Sure, we can only control our own love for the Lord... we cannot control our spouse, and their commitment and time they spend with the Lord. BUT we can CONTROL ourself! When we LOVE the Lord first, it WILL spill off into all other relationships in our life. His love will overflow into our relationship with our spouse, our co-workers, our children. When we love God first, HE will give us wisdom HOW TO love! Maybe it's loving in a way that we would not have thought of on our own. Maybe, unbeknownst to us, our spouse is really feeling like he/she needs a break. He/she would feel loved just by having a weekend getaway to recoup. Fishing. Chilling. Sleeping. In a mountain cabin. Alone or with you. SO... because we love the LORD first, the Holy Spirit leads us to send them on a little 1, 2, 3 day getaway to refresh (no kids allowed!). Maybe it's something as simple as, our spouse would feel loved by having some of their favorite fresh baked cookies when they get home from a long day at work. Maybe it's the new "technology" piece they were eye-balling at BestBuy, or a new shirt? Maybe it's just walking in the house to a wife with make-up on, her hair done & in clothes other than sweatpants & a T-shirt?

FUELING your marriage is IMPORTANT! You cannot get a return on investment if you do not invest!! That could mean a regular weekly, or monthly date night. A husband/wife retreat to getaway without kids... once or twice a year. It doesn't have to be too fancy, but investing in the babysitter, the lodging, the meals could REAP GREAT DIVIDENDS into a long, healthy and happy marriage!!!

Some days it's about the little things. The little things DO matter. Saving the curly chips for them, because those are their favorites. Pulling the covers up and tucking them in when it's time for bed, because they like their covers tight. Filling up their coffee cup for a refill so they don't have to get out of their comfy seat. Peeling their tomato that you put on their sandwich, because it shows you went the extra step - and it's just how grandma did for them! Loving them. Saying kind words. Not nagging. Serving their favorite foods. Showing love how THEY receive love the best! If you need help in this area, a great book to read and RE-read is, "The Five Love Languages." ----- And friend, let me remind you of the principle of sowing and reaping. When you SOW these good seeds into your spouse, you WILL REAP a harvest in return! Don't fret! If you feel like you are doing all the giving and sowing, continue sowing with a good attitude, GOD SEE'S! Your good deeds will not go unnoticed!

Finally, the Proverbs 31 woman girds herself with spiritual strength. FRIEND, YOU need to be renewed and refreshed! YOU need to have YOUR batteries recharged too. This may mean TAKING SOME THINGS OFF YOUR PLATE, OFF YOUR CALENDAR! Her physical fitness strength gives her the extra energy she needs to keep up, to keep her metabolism high and give her those endorphins (the happy chemical her body makes!)! Her mental strength keeps her sharp, because she invests time into reading books to help her grow mentally versus wasting countless hours watching TV, on Facebook or playing mindless games on her iPhone. She finds ways to STAY SHARP, stay mentally strong, to be an iron-sharpener to her husband.

It's OUR job to get OURSELF right. Let's begin today. What are some ways we can FUEL our marriage today??? I'd love to hear ONE way that YOU fuel your marriage? Feel free to share! :)

Have a blessed day!

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