Today is day seven of the Love Dare book. The book talks about how love believes the best and how there are two rooms in our hearts. One room is the appreciation room and the other the depreciation room.
As I read todays reading I was again convicted about my behavior. I am ashamed to admit that in my marriage, I have dwelt in the depreciation room more than the appreciation room. Recently the Lord spoke to my heart about this very issue. The Lord asked me to write a list of things that make my husband valuable.
As I sat down and begin to write the list it quickly filled three pages. Here are some of those reasons: he is a believer in Jesus, he is a leader in our home, he is loving and kind. He is gentle and patient. He is very forgiving and he never quits, he never gives up. He is faithful and honest and he exudes integrity. He is handsome and smart and he doesn’t know a stranger. This list was easy for me to write I didn’t have to think very hard to come up with the many attributes my husband has that are wonderful.
The Lord spoke to my heart about this list, and that I am supposed to meditate on it and read it when I get offended or we have an argument. By reading the truth about my husband and why he is valuable and lovable these things begin to fill my heart with appreciation. Any bitterness or anger begins to disappear, where there was once an offense, now forgiveness is given. I don’t do it always but I do it more now than before. Slowly God is showing me how to appreciate my husband more and how to control my thoughts when I am hurt or offended.
When I am tempted to replay in my mind my past hurts or frustrations about my husband I am reminded to pray for him instead. I forget how powerful prayer can be especially when we choose to love our husbands through it. Prayer changes our hearts and our thinking. I may start off upset when I pray but when I am done I am more at peace than when I first began.
I don’t do any of this well, or as much as I should. I struggle daily to control my mouth and to take my thoughts captive when I am hurting. What I do know is this, God is changing me and showing me I can’t do any of this without His spirit leading me. I will never be able to change in my own strength. When I start to move without God’s leading I find my love falls short and is filled with false motives and great intentions. I need Jesus to be my navigator, to direct me how to love my husband unconditionally.
1 Corinthians 13:8 Love never fails.
Many of us probably know the verse above or at least have seen it or heard it several times. It’s so simple, yet powerfully profound. We have read it, we know it but do we believe it? Do we really believe LOVE NEVER FAILS? Think about it for a minute. If we believe that Love never fails, then that means we would fully love our husbands knowing love never fails. I question today do I really believe it? Do my actions show I believe it?
Over the years I have come to believe a lie about love. In part to what I was taught and in part to what I have witnessed in the lives of other Christians around me. I saw love being withheld in the name of Christ, because of a person’s actions. Today the truth is being spoken to me, over me, by God’s word the one and only authority and truth. God is love and His love never fails, never quits and is never dependent on our behavior. I can mess up everyday, all day for the rest of my life and God still loves me.
If you have been doing this dare without picking up your Bible and thinking you’re going to change or hoping your husband will change or your marriage will get better, STOP!
Although this book is great and offers great ideas and scripture, nothing can satisfy, change or heal other than God himself and His word. We need the Bible to be our foundation, the first thing we go to, not a person, another book or study. No matter how good those things are or how smart or wise a person may be, they won’t satisfy like only His love can.
Lord please help us today to not only read your word but believe it when we do. Reveal yourself to us each personally, open our eyes and restore our sight, unlock our deaf ears and show yourself to us. Remove false religion and give us real authentic faith to believe. Give us strength to walk this narrow path and show us how to love our husbands. On the inside of our hearts and minds permanently burn the positive attributes of our husbands. Show us characteristics about our spouses that attracted us to them long ago. Ignite in us a passion to explore our husbands inch by inch. Help us to be more diligent to pray for our husbands in all areas. Jesus protect our marriages as we move forward today with you as our guide amen.