Heart eyes and kissy faces are how many marriages start. After all, you did just marry the most awesome, handsome, guy on the planet, right!? Shortly after the honeymoon reality sorta crashes the mood. Work and bills can start to build some friction.
Not to mention the little annoyances of living together every single day. And you’re discovering all the habits you had no idea existed previously. Can he just put his dirty clothes in the hamper for crying out loud? Or seriously, how hard is it to run the dishwasher.
Before we know it, this relationship called marriage isn’t quite what we pictured. It’s a bit messier, a bit more involved, and maybe just a tad less loving than we ever imagined. But, here’s some great news, it doesn’t have to be that way! Yes, marriage does take a lot of work. It’s this crazy relationship of both people giving 100% and a divine art of selflessness.And, at least for me, I’ve found one word that will transform your marriage.
Kindness. Yep. Was that what you were expected? This seemingly simple word has the incredible power to transform. Kindness is one of the first virtues that begin to dissolve in many marriages. Not on purpose. It just sort of happens in a quiet, unassuming way. Then, one morning you wake up and look at yourself in the mirror wondering, “What happened?”
The power of kindness is unlocked when you find yourself annoyed or even downright angry, and choosing to not speak hurtful words. The picking up dirty clothes for the hundredth time and doing the dishes without complaining or giving a guilt trip. Here’s one. Give your husband a genuine compliment.
It’s really not that difficult. But, kindness requires intentionality. And let me tell you this, I have found so much life-giving, powerful results in my words. Especially, the phrase, “Thank you.” which is a common courtesy and small kindness we bestow on complete strangers, can oftentimes become lost in our most precious relationship with your husband. Wives, when you sincerely tell your man “thank you” it not only conveys the magic of kindness but also profound love and respect.
Respect is so ultra important for men. I highly recommend the book, “Love and Respect” for every married couple. This book was one of our wedding presents and I am eternally grateful that I read it immediately. Yes, I realize respect is also important for women, but it’s not so hardwired into us like males.
Just as kindness is also important for husbands to give to their wives. To be completely honest, the first seven years of my marriage was a bit of minefield. There were still wonderful joys and lots of happiness, but navigating those early years was a feat I’m so thankful we survived. There were many contributing factors to our success, but I can tell you for certain that in crucial moments when my husband showed kindness were life-giving minutes. My husband’s kind words and actions drove a small stream in the desert. And the thing about kindness is that it not only refreshes but births new life and multiples.
Our kindness woven together made that tiny bit of hope grow into a river. The desert was no longer a desert and our relationship began to flourish. All because of a little bit of kindness.
And don’t just take it from me! If you look in the Bible you’ll find several verses that highlight the importance of this little word. Here’s a couple of my favorites:
“Never let loyalty and kindness leave you! Tie them around your neck as a reminder. Write them deep within your heart.” (Proverbs 3:3 NLT)
“The husband must fulfill his [marital] duty to his wife [with goodwill and kindness], and likewise the wife to her husband.” (1 Corinthians 7:3 AMP)
In case you’re feeling a bit stumped in expressing some good old fashioned kindness, no worries! Here are a handful of super easy ways to throw kindness around like confetti.
Write a “thank you” note and put it in your husband’s lunch or someplace he’ll see at work. You can thank him for something he’s done or just for being his awesome self.
Do one of “his” household chores. Without complaining or looking for praise.
Give your husband a back or foot rub.
Buy his favorite candy or snack.
Hand him the remote and snuggle up close.
What can you do today to show kindness to your husband? Don’t wait for him to make the first move! If you’ve got a great idea, we’d love for you to share it!