In the early stages of courtship and even into marriage couples are most often kind and often go out of their way to please one another. The initial dates always find the couple on their best behavior. There are many small kindnesses shown, They dress up for one another, groom, say kind and considerate things and are very careful as to how they express themselves. As courtship continues some of these begin to fade away. After engagements arguments may often ensure about the upcoming wedding. But generally there are still many kindnesses and patience shown. The early stages of the marriage often feature joyful and new experiences (unless they’d been shacking up). 😉
But it seems to me that far too many marriages devolve into a sort of unkindness that can set up between the spouses. They start to get impatient and grouchy and often accumulate resentments about each other. Some very mean things start to get said and many little kindnesses disappear. Grooming gives way to an overly casual even sloppy appearance around the house. Little pleasantries like “please” and “thank you” fade away, “I’m sorry” and “excuse me,” go away, and even affectionate terms like “dear”.
Read and heed carefully what Colossians has to say:
12Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. 15Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. 17And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. (Col 3: 12-17)
Not bad advice at all. Husbands, show your wife kindness and manifest compassion. Tell her you love her, that she is beautiful and you’re glad you married her. Bring her flowers for no particular reason. Help her carry the burdens of the household and children. Support her in her vocation as mother. Wives, encourage your husband. Tell him you are proud to have him as a husband. Praise him once and a while for what he does well and show him affection. Encourage him to be a father and a leader.
Well you get the point. Now I’m not asking you to lie, but you should ask the Lord to show you and remind you of what you really like about your spouse. Focus on these things. What you feed grows, so feed the positive and starve the negative. Above all, get on your knees and beg God to help your really love your spouse with a deep and abiding love. God can do this for you.
It’s also good to share a little humor along the way. This video presents a rather silly list of the things you shouldn’t say to your wife. So pay attention men, take notes. Wives, I don’t have a video to offer you but I figure you already know what not to say 🙂