5 Things I’ve Learned About Marriage by Kay Schrock

1. Men love a happy wife.

Who doesn’t love a happy person, right? We all know people who we love to be around, simply because they are consistently happy. Our husbands feel the same way – they love living with a woman who is consistently happy. You don’t have to be a bubbly, happy-go-lucky person. All you need is the joy of the Lord in your heart, a smile on your lips, and pleasant words. A man can face the world a bit easier after a pleasant morning with his wife. A smile and a hug go a long ways. Men also need us to be cheerful and pleasant when they arrive home in the evening. It is a hard enough job being responsible for a family, without having to worry whether his wife will be grumpy or short-tempered when he gets home. Make a habit of being predictably happy. If you feel depressed and upset, start practicing thankfulness. Write out an actual list of things to thank God for. Thankfulness equals joy.

2. Be on the Same Team

Always, always, always be on the same team. Competitiveness in marriage opens the door to conflict and bickering. If you must compete with someone, find a sport or hobby that has that element. Don’t compete with your man. You should always strive to be on his side. Be his biggest supporter and fan. Encourage him in the things he is good at. Don’t feel like you have to ‘top’ him, or be right. Work together. Treasure your relationship and pour all your energy into building a team. Don’t waste energy on competition. It takes away time and effort from investing in your marriage.

3. He is a Man.

I know it sounds simplistic – but your husband is not another one of your girlfriends. He may not be interested in what scent the candles are, or which blanket you bought for the kids bed. Of course, some men are interested in those types of things, but many more aren’t. We shouldn’t feel neglected and hurt if he doesn’t want to spend all evening discussing paint samples or menu ideas. Talk to your girlfriends about those ideas. When your husband has free time, talk about things of mutual interest. Maybe your husband is like mine, and shows interest in anything that interests you. Don’t take advantage of that. Make sure you are showing the same attention to his ideas and dreams, as he does to yours.

4. Be Courteous.
When you live with someone for years, its easy to get too comfortable. Learn to be as courteous to your husband as you are to your friends and neighbors. We tend to treat others with the utmost politeness and deference, but with our husbands, we bark orders without so much a please or thank-you. Politeness makes things a bit easier to handle. Don’t think that since your family it doesn’t matter. It does. We all like to be treated like we’re special. Is your husband special to you? Act like it. Dress nice and speak softly. Don’t allow the hardships of life to reflect in your tone of voice or appearance. Courtesy goes along way in smoothing out the rough edges in a marriage.

5. I am Human Too.
Your husband is not the only one with faults in your marriage. If you have been focusing on him for a long time, it may be hard to accept, but its true. Sometimes we get so used to looking at him and his faults, that its easy to forget that we, too, have problems. We have annoying habits and self-serving hearts, just like our husband. When God showed me this truth, it changed my whole perspective of marriage. I began thinking of all the things about myself that were less than attractive, and realized that there were many. Its a two-way street; we both have faults. We both need the grace of God in our lives, and we both need forgiveness. Don’t be so attentive to his faults. Overlook little things. Its better to forgive quickly and let things go, than to waste your marriage on making sure he knows how wrong he is. If there is an area where he is lacking – pick up the slack. Grow a thick skin. Whatever it takes, quit finding fault with your man. Take a little time to examine your own life, and see if you don’t have faults as well. Then give him some grace. And while you’re at it, give him a hug!

Used with Permission. Copyright River of Life Christian Fellowship.

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