Thursday, January 26, 2012

Married Life, Day #195


This may not be the case for everyone, but for me, I have found that it's the little things that really seem to matter and impact me the most. I don't need grand gestures all the time; the simple day to day things that Mike does to let me know he loves me are what really melt my heart. Just knowing that he was thinking about me and is paying attention to the little things that I enjoy, or feeling like I'm being protected or taken care of in some way...well, it just fills my love tank  :)

Whether it's remembering some of my favorite things to surprise me with...

...or waking up early with me (even though he doesn't have to be up yet) and then making my lunch for me. With a sweet note attached. Every day...

No really- I have a drawer full of lunch notes.

...or coming home to learn I don't have to clean the house because he's already done it, or coming home to my bed "turned down" for me because he knows it has been a long day...

...yep. It's the little things that make all the difference in the world.

In any relationship, there is talk of love languages and how you best feel loved and show love. If you are familiar with the 5 love languages, I happen to be Acts of Service and Quality Time (could you have guessed?) Mike happens to be Words of Affirmation and Physical Touch. I actually think about these so-called "languages" a lot in our marriage. For me, words mean very little...not that they're not important, because they are. Hearing "I love you"or how Mike feels about me is definitely important to me. But at the end of the day, I want him to show me he loves me. My brain constantly thinks, "Actions speak louder than words. It's nice when you tell me that you love me, but I really know that you love me when you show me."

But while I may not value words as much, they're crucial for Mike. I constantly have to remind myself that it may be fine and dandy for me to be doing things to show him that I love him (which is my default and something easier for me, since I already speak that language). And don't get me wrong. Mike feels loved when I do things for him and when we spend time together. But at the end of the day, his brain constantly thinks, "It's nice that you did that for me, but it would mean so much more if you would tell me how you feel. Tell me that you're proud of me and why. And then be sure to hold my hand and hug me often."  :)

Please don't misunderstand me; I value the biblical description of love and how it calls us to act contrary to our flesh and put someone else before yourself.

"Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. 
It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 
it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things."
~1 Corinthians 13:4-7

As Christ-followers, we experience the ultimate form of love in the sacrifice and redemption of Jesus. And it's only because of Him that we are even capable of loving others in a way that brings glory to His name. The 1 Corinthians description of love is certainly not saying, love this way only if it comes naturally to you or is easy. The beauty of this love is that it is selfless. It requires us to think beyond ourselves and truly consider others first.

But I also believe the Lord has uniquely wired our human hearts to give and receive love in practical ways. I really want to be able to speak Mike's love language. I want to be sure that I'm not always trying to love him the way that makes sense to me (which is often what I end up doing). Instead, I want to love him the way that fills his love tank. And the truth is, that takes prayer, work, and selflessness. It's easier to love someone in a way that makes you feel loved. It's much more challenging to love someone in a way that has nothing to do with you. Mike's a lot better at speaking my love language than I am at speaking his, so I have some work to do. I need some practice in order to become more fluent in his love language, if you will (Might as well use the play on words. Go with me, here.) The fact of the matter is that I love Mike and think he's the greatest. But I need to work on telling him that way more often than I do. So that is my challenge: become fluent in Words of Affirmation and Physical Touch. Because I want my husband to really know how much I love him.


1 comment:

  1. This is a beautiful post. It's inspiring to read about how you genuinely strive to look at what the Bible teaches and live it out in real life.

    I am Words of Affirmation and Acts of Service... a mix of the two of you! :)