If you were baking a chocolate cake there would be some key ingredients you would need. Most of those ingredients wouldn’t taste good by themselves (except chocolate!). It’s only after the ingredients have been properly prepared that the dish turns out as it’s intended.
In a similar way, there are a number of different “ingredients” that make our commitment to our spouse sweeter in the “mix” of our marriage. Blended together they yield a wonderful outcome.
There are plenty of other ingredients we might include, but here are four you don’t want to miss!
Having a mindset that is focused on serving your spouse softens your heart and draws them toward you. You are letting your spouse know that they have value to you. You are showing that what is on their heart matters to you as well.
In the daily things of life, serving may mean simply clearing your spouse’s place after dinner. It could be as simple as offering to get something from the kitchen. Maybe it’s a tender neck rub while watching a show. Or offering to run an errand for your spouse when their schedule is maxed out.
Being considerate means seeing the world through your spouse’s eyes. If they are watching a show that is important to them, wait until the commercial to ask a question. if they prefer the toilet paper to come one way off the roll :), then thoughtfully put it on the way they like it! If they need to get out with some friends, offer to stay home and watch the children so they can get a break.
The Apostle Peter told husbands to “be considerate as you live with your wives” (1 Peter 3:7). The Apostle Paul expanded that by writing that all Christians are to “be peaceable and considerate” (Titus 3:2). Being considerate of your spouse means being aware of their surroundings and desires. If your Christian walk isn’t working at home then it isn’t working at all!
Everyone desires respect. In a world that increasingly devalues human life and dignity, you have the opportunity to treat your spouse with admiration.
What has your spouse accomplished in their life that you admire? Have you observed traits in their character that is praiseworthy? Tell them! What might you say to your children or friends– in front of your spouse–that would let others know how much you respect and love them?
Grace is the decision to give what isn’t deserved. There will be times when we will feel that something is owed to us. It may be an apology. It could be recognition. But in those moments, our first response is to give grace and not make demands.
Marriage is an intimate relationship. There will be things your spouse has a tendency to do that may bug you. Grace lets it go.
There will be offenses that may merit a righteous anger. But grace says, “I forgive you.” Show grace to your spouse on a daily basis.
These are four ingredients for loving your spouse that, when baked in daily, will help the two of you build your marriage!