Here are five easy ways you can bless your spouse today.
There are fewer things that bring pleasure to my wife than when I buy her flowers or do something for her that makes her life easier. It might be washing the dishes or cleaning out the litter box, but I do respect her space and she’d prefer I not do the laundry, so one way you can bless your spouse is to surprise them with something they like, and it’s even better when there’s no special occasion, because they’re not expecting it. A friend of mine put an ad in the local paper, wishing his wife a happy birthday, and in the ad, he put a few things about her that made her special. She was embarrassed at first, but later, she cherished it and it found a place in her scrapbook. Some of life’s simplest pleasures are things like, “I’ve got that,” “I’ve done it already,” and “Why don’t I watch the kids while you take a nap.” That might look different for you since you know your spouse better than anyone, but the spouse usually knows what their mate loves, and that’s a great place to start. Life is full of little surprises, but sometimes it’s the little things mean a lot. They can bring precious moments like: “Oh thank you for thinking of me.”
Be a Good Listener
I found out the hard way that I needed to give my wife eye contact and sit quietly and listen to her when she’s talking. I discovered that I shouldn’t interrupt her, even when there’s a moment of silence, so one way to bless your spouse is to give them your full and undivided attention (and guys, turn off the TV…I know, I’m guilty too). When you give your spouse your full attention, it says that they matter to you. It means they are important enough to stop everything you’re doing and listen. It validates their feelings and allows them to open up about things. They say a joy shared is doubled, but a sorrow shared is halved. It does seem to help when you share your sorrow with others, so think about how it helps others. Be a sympathetic listener. And when we are talking to our spouse and we’re looking over their shoulder at someone or something else, it makes the feel that they’re not important enough to keep your attention….and that hurts. To bless your spouse, and those around you, be a good listener. Someday you might want someone to listen to you.
Brag on Them
Facebook gets a lot of posts….and lots of fake news, but few times do I see a spouse post or share something on Facebook that is positive or uplifting. If you want to bless your spouse, brag on them publically and this means in public; in front of your children, in front of your family, in front of your friends, in front of church members, in front of everyone. An encouraging word can give your spouses the private and public recognition they deserve. Brag on how much they do, how many they help, and just how great of a blessing they are. The Bible says, “encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing” (1st Thess 5:11). Words can tear down or words can build up, so never humiliate your spouse in public, and “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear” (Eph 4:29).
Gratitude changes attitude. I have no doubt about that. One day at a busy convenience store, a young lady looked overwhelmed by all the customers. When she waited on me, I said, “Thank you so much. You’re doing a great job handling so many customers…keep up the good work.” I glimpsed a smile and hoped it would help her make it through the rush. If that can help someone I don’t even know, think about how much our words of encouragement to our spouses can make a difference. To show thankfulness is to express thankfulness; both publically to those outside and inside of the home (see “Brag on Them” paragraph) and in private, face to face. When we tell our spouses, “Thank you,” it makes them feel that we’re not taking them for granted. It makes them feel that what they do is important. It validates their effort on behalf of the family, so to be thankful is to bless your spouse. One little “Thank you” can go a long, long way in a person’s life.
Reaffirm Your Love
I love anniversaries because they bring back so many happy memories, but why not fan that romantic flame again, rekindling the feelings you had in the beginning. Try to have a second honeymoon, revisit the place you used to love to go to as a couple, and keep reaffirming to them, “I love you and I would marry you again.” I don’t think anyone ever gets tired of hearing that. Perhaps the 7 most important words in the English language are; “I love you, thank you,” and “forgive me.” On one occasion, while waiting for my plane, I saw an older couple sitting together, holding hands. I sat next to them and ask them how long they’d been married, and they said for 58 years. I asked them what their secret was to a long marriage, and while the man thought about it, his wife jumped right in and she said, “Learn to forgive.” When we forgive our spouse for their imperfections (as they must ours), then we are reaffirming our love for them. We accept them just the way they are as they did us. Remember, the last thing you might say to your spouse is, “I love you,” so make it the first thing you say in the morning and the last thing you say at night (or before heading off to work).
If you want to bless your spouse, and why wouldn’t you? You must take the initiative. Good marriages just don’t happen; they take work and intentionality, so do something nice for them when they’re not expecting it; give them your full attention when they’re talking to you; brag on them to others; be thankful and reaffirm that love you have for them and express it in creative ways. This is a good way to bless your spouse.