The idea of grace has been on my mind and slightly bit of a theme lately.
There were 8 definitions for grace. Here’s a few I thought appropriate in marriage.
- a temporary exemption
- disposition to or an act or instance of kindness, courtesy, or clemency
- a special favor
Yesterday I was asked to give advice at a baby shower for the new mom-to-be. I wrote quite a few things down and ended with encouraging her to give her husband and herself grace in the midst of a newborn.
In our marriage the best thing I can give William is grace when I expect something that doesn’t happen.
I think there’s wisdom in looking at a situation that may not have turned out like you expected and give the other person grace.
So…in my life, when I give grace to William, it looks like me shutting my mouth and not talking. In other words I choose not to remind him when something’s not done (or done my way) in my opinion.
As scripture says, “God opposses the proud; but give grace to the humble.”
I’ve been thinking often of the “favors” I do for Will. Not like the things he asks me to do. The things he doesn’t ask. Like picking up the dirty laundry and giving him a foot rub after work or bringing lunch to him when he’s working around the house. (I’ve been thinking of these because I often wonder if I’m expressive enough with him.)
In my experience, I’ve found that the more I seek out ways to bless him, the more I want to. Maybe it’s because by doing it, I’m asking myself why I’m doing such and such…and the answer seems to always come back to something like, he works tirelessly for our family. He works without grumbling or seeking reward. Oh ya, and he always has a great attitude!
More often than not we can turn someone’s day around with one little act of kindness. Be it a favorite coffee beverage, foot rub, eye contact and words of affirmation, a love note, a home cooked meal. It’s my encouragement to you to see what you can do or what you can say to your spouse today that’ll make their heart smile! Sometimes by doing it, we’re just as excited as they are.
a : fairness and straightforwardness of conduct b : adherence to the facts : sincerity
(defined from Mirriam Webster dictionary)
In our marriage, honestly is of upmost importance. And we value it as that. I’ve always thought it better to be straightforward than have to cover something up for day, months, years. By that point the truth has been so muddled it hurts even more to be honest.
So my encouragement today is try to be honest. With you spouse and with yourself. Don’t muddle the waters when they don’t need to be. Don’t create issues that arise from gossip. Always try to be honest.
When Will & I were dating, I think I laughed at just about everything he said. Was he funny or was I trying to flirt? It’s a toss-up.
Today, he’s still pretty funny. I think it’s attractive when he can make me laugh. I love laughing with him. And, with anyone for that matter. Laughing always lightens up the mood.
Being silly, smiling, laughing, joking are all fabulous traits. After all, much of life is taken too seriously. So, be silly a little bit more. Laugh a whole lot more! Teach your kids how to laugh. You’ll be so rewarded by it. That, I can promise!
I’ll be vulnerable enough to show this crazy pic of us. (Tracy S. – this pic was taken minutes before your “intimate” shower!)
I’ll be your best friend IF ….
Remember when we used to say that to get our way? Those were the days of being young & nieve.
On this marriage monday, I want to talk about making your spouse your best friend. By all means, yes, I do consider William by best friend. He knows me deeply and understands who I am. He loves and protects me as his wife and is thankful for me. We are committed to one another and are happy with each other. We want to encourage each other in our dreams as a family and as individuals. I love living life with my husband. He will always be my best friend.
However, I have another best friend, Tracy S. Tracy knows me well and we talk about different things together. She’s who I go to when I need to bounce ideas off of, or need encouragement when I’m overwhelmed, or talking about anything that has to do with babies. Tracy is an amazing listener and will be quick to help. We encourage one another in loving and praying for our husbands and our baby boys.
In my 3.5 years of marriage (& 2 years of dating), I know the best recipe of which best friend I reach out to for different issues. Early in our marriage, I realized when I tried to make William fill every role in my life, I was draining him. Therefore he didn’t have anything left when it came time to actually be my husband.
My husband is not my mall shopping friend or pedicure pal. My best friend Tracy fills that role.
Tracy is not someone who I am going to plan my son’s future with. William is.
What I’m trying to say, ladies, is I really encourage you to remember your girlfriends. Girlfriends are so important for us. They can help us be better women, better for ourselves & family. Allow your husband to be your husband and make some time for friends. You’ll soon see that blessing of friendship.
We all have different gifts, different passions we bring to the table. In our marriage, the gifts & passions William & I have can be great for us as long as we work on it.
Similarily, we both have a passion to develop a rock solid marriage. We work hard on our marriage and we love to be married to one another. From it we’ve seen the blessings we are for each other. For us, we believe it’s important to put forth effort into your spouse. With that being said, we’ve decided to dedicate Mondays to writing a small tidbit on something in our marriage that works (or doesn’t work) for us.
Let me preface with this. When asked for advice, I get a little nervous. I know my words have weight and the last thing I would want to do is hurt somebody needing help. So, I promise to be honest as long as you promise to take our advice with some salt because, remember this: We’ve been married 3 1/2 years. We don’t know everything but we know a few things really well! We’re only 29 & 30 so don’t expect too much wisdom. Now that my disclaimer is over, let’s start with this week’s Marriage Monday.
Less Gripe = More Joy
Give your spouse the gift today of not complaining. Sounds easy, right? Try it. Try to go for one day, then two days, and so on. That is one of the best gifts I can give to William.
When I see dirty socks on the floor I do one of two things. Pick them up and put them in the laundry room or think to myself, I’m going to leave ’em there and let them pile up until he gets them! The latter approach is a moment when I’ve got to put it in perspective! So, here’s what I do. I remember, William starts work at 5am and goes until 5-7pm. HMMM…I think I can handle the socks going to the laundry room and not gripe about it to him.
On the flip side, when toys are scattered everywhere it irritates me. I’m not a mom who wants every room of my home to be a play room. So I have an organization system. The systems fails on days when I’m exhausted. When the toys everywhere starts to bug me, William either picks them up himself without being asked or he asks me if we could try to pick them up together. The thing that I like about his approach is that he’s really kind when he asks me.
Leave a comment if you will. I’m curious to know if we’re the only ones who work on “Less Gripe = More Joy”