Thank you for reading Post 1 of the Anniversary series, enjoy Post 2. Here we will talk about making a marriage work and in Post 3, dating your husband and keeping the marriage alive. (This is all from our experience and doesn’t mean it’s the gospel truth and we could be very wrong;), but we are learning.
Remember, this is not me teaching or instructing but humbly sharing what we have learned in hopes it will be a blessing to your family. I wish I had books and blogs to go to when we were starting our journey as one. We didn’t!
creating an atmosphere-
Regardless how hectic our day may be, there is a time for everything. Welcome your hubby home from work, let him unload, enjoy a warm meal, and wait for the time to put your load on him (food does amazing things to a man, hehe). He too is drained, and very exhausted. Put yourself in his shoes, how would you like to be treated if you worked a long exhausting day?
We as wise women who build our homes really are to be creating a home that is a place of refuge, almost a haven from the everyday chaos (Prov 14:1). A place for all of the family members to unwind. Am I creating an atmosphere my husband and children are eager to come home to or vice versa, eager to flee?
lord change him-
It’s no secret, we are all different, very different. Two people come together from different upbringings, different family sizes and beliefs. Serious struggles may arise. Often we take it upon ourselves to change our spouse and nag at him.
Instead of trying to change whatever you want changed, pray about it and search yourself. Maybe it’s not him at all. I cannot tell you the amount of times over the course of our marriage I wanted to change something about my spouse myself. I felt my way was the right way (cheeks burning). I remember I was reading a book once on the power of prayer and my perspective on this topic changed. If there is something I really feel needs changed, I want God to change his heart on the matter. Friends, when God changes him, the change will be beneficial to the whole family with no going back!. Do I really want him to change for my sake or change because God has spoken to his heart? I think all of us will agree, let God be the instrument of his change. Then there was also times during prayer, God showed me it was me who needed changed, not him at all, ouch!.
Can you imagine working like your husband does, day in and day out? Especially we stay at home moms. It’s so important, on a regular basis, to tell him how much you appreciate what he puts into your family. Whether its work, or something he fixed around the home, or a chore you really needed done and he finally got to it, show him your appreciation.
-Add a sticky note on his side of the mirror, or where he changes, or in his wallet. Run out the morning before he leaves and put your “thanks for fixing the faucet last night babe” sticky note on his dash. Or if you pack his lunch, add a little sweet note in acknowledgement. He will be so warmed by the gesture and next time you need something done, it won’t take 4 weeks to get to it ;).
I am not sure if this will be helpful but those never ending chores or fixes that need done around the home, I like to just keep a list of them in our kitchen. When something new comes up, I just add them there. He knows the list is there and gets to cross it out when he is done. We love this. Seeing the crossed our projects adds pleasure and boosts his ego to do new ones (with the affirmation from me telling him how much I appreciate his work). Men really are rather simple; here is the problem and this is how I fix it, so lists work GREAT.
No matter how difficult the conversation needs to be, how much pain or disappointment it may cause, be honest and open with each other. Sooner or later, the situation that needed to be discussed will bring its ugly head into your marriage and it won’t be pretty. Having an honest relationship will only strengthen your marriage and build trust.
Don’t go to sleep with an argument unsettled. Yes, even if that means it takes hours to work it out. This was advice someone gave to us before we got married and we stuck to it. Did you know it’s medically proven that going to sleep with an argument or in anger has effects on you physically? =-) So.. work it out and enjoy a good night!
We had Bible school at our church, at one of the lessons, the professor drew this outline and I absolutely love it. As you see in this outline, the closer we come to God (at the same rate), the stronger bond will be and the stronger our marriage will be.
Looking back on our marriage, it was at times we did things for God that really strengthened our marriage. Over discussions that formed our faith, or how to serve others, or over mission work. The things of this world are temporary and passing, that is why when our marriage is on Biblical grounds, based around our faith in God, it will thrive.
as a wife I-
Focus on your husband’s strong points rather than his flaws.
Encourage him rather criticizing, we all make mistakes. When something decided doesn’t go right, I still stick by his side, just like I stick by him when things go very right and I am proud of him. He needs me most when doesn’t go right. When I stick by him, we can get through anything. I can tell you stories after stories of mistakes each of us made, yet the other stuck by encouraging and reassuring we will get through this.
Leave the gossip as far from our home as possible. (I am not talking about when you are abused physically or verbally and you need intervention. I am talking about a healthy relationship.) How would you like it if your hubby discussed you over tea in a negative way with his friends or family? Prayer is powerful, tell God all that is on your heart! When questioning if you are taking too much out of your home, question yourself how you’d feel if your husband shared this info in the matter you are about to share it with someone?
Don’t bring up the mistake of the past, keep them there! Just as Christ puts our sins, transgressions and mistakes behind us upon forgiving us, oh how we too should stop criticizing our spouse for past faults.
Saying sorry first is not a sign of weakness, it’s a battle won before anyone is hurt and wounds need bandaged that take time to heal.
As much as I love my family, they cannot bring my husband down, or talk negatively of him. We are one!
he completes me-
One of the biggest misconceptions I had to get over was that my husband completes me! I would always say that and truly always felt that way. The more I read the Bible and get to know God on an intimate level, I see that isn’t true at all. My husband is imperfect, just like I am very, very flawed. If I truly believe he completes me, it’s almost idolatry in a spiritual sense. I am complete in Christ, and Christ alone (Col 2:10). When I expect my spouse to be that perfect completion of me, I am setting myself up for a lot of disappointment. No human can ever live up to the expectations of another. Yes, he is my best friend, knows me like no other. However, I am complete in Chris, he is complete in Christ and there is no competition for that spot that cannot be filled by either of us. Let that sink in my friends, and can I get an Amen!
marriage is a garden-
Marriage is like a garden, to enjoy the fruit of your labor, you both must put a great amount of effort into it. Chose a good soil, fertilize, constantly weeding, watering, fertilize, keep out the bugs and don’t let your fruit over ripen. Lastly, enjoy the fruit of your labor.
Good soil- Foundation on God, wise woman builds
Fertilize- Word of God, creating an atmosphere
Weeding- Remove gossip, past mistake, keep away arguments as these will only spread like a weed and double if not removed
Watering- Acknowledgement, encouragement, support
Bugs- As soon as the problem is evident, kill it off
Don’t let fruit over ripen- Don’t get too caught up in the children and household to enjoy the fruit a healthy marriage can bring
Enjoy fruit- Date each other, fall in love over and over and grow stronger
What do you guys have to add? I’d love to hear from you. We love listening to stories. Much of what we know is from advice of other wise people who are willing to share their experience.
I am so thrilled to share Post 3 on dating your husband. I think that is the best one, do you agree?