Focusing on being an intentional wife during February…..the month that we associate with love….was completely unintentional (pun totally intended!) It just happens that after God, the next important area in my life that I want to focus my intention and attention on is my husband.
When I think about being intentional to Mike I think about loving him on purpose, doing things for him that makes him realize that he is on my mind and in my heart, that he is a priority in my life. I think that Mike and I are in the stage of marriage where raising our little family takes every bit of energy that we have. He is busy making a living in order to provide an income as a Ranch Broker as well as helping his dad run the family ranch, and making sure that he carves out time to spend with each of the kids; and I spend every last resource of mental, physical and emotional energy on making sure that we all have clean clothes, a clean space to call home, healthy meals that everyone likes (an endeavor that I have come to the conclusion is almost impossible!), make sure that everyone is up to date on dentist and doctor appointments, as well as helping with ranch work…..etc., etc., etc. My point is that life is busy, and why is it that the thing that ends up being the last priority is our spouse?
I remember the days when being intentional about showing my love to Mike was easy, and really didn’t require much thought because all of my thoughts, all of my emotions, my whole life was pretty much focused on him. Those days of new love when everything that he did was sweet and endearing and not at all irritating. Those days before kids when every minute of my day belonged to him and him alone. Those days when the stress and strain of daily life were few and easily handled. In those early days of our marriage it was easy to give him all of my attention. A perfect example is that when Mike and I were first married I began the habit of bringing a cup of coffee to him to wake him up in the morning. I have always been more of a morning person so I am the first one awake and it was such a joy to be able to wake my husband up with a kiss and coffee. I don’t know at what point this no longer was a habit; occasionally it will be an afterthought, but I generally don’t wake Mike up this way any longer. More often than not I catch myself snapping at him to get his own coffee!! In the beginning, during that honeymoon phase, paying special attention to Mike was easy…..and now fast forward 20 years it takes a bit more of an effort!
This is where I feel that God is really convicting my heart. I have fallen short in making my husband feel that he is priority….that he is deserving of my intention and attention. And I desire to change that because the fact of the matter is that I want my marriage to thrive and not just survive. Mike and I are committed to each other, we are in this for the long-haul, and there is no question in either of our minds about that. Almost 20 years ago we stood before family and friends and God and we promised to love each other for better or worse, in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer. We made a covenant that is more binding than anything else in our lives. We’ve survived some hard things in those 20 years, and have come out stronger and closer to one another because of those struggles. What is tough is dealing with the tiny, seemingly insignificant and mundane details of the day in and day out parts of our lives. Those are the “little foxes” that work to destroy our marriage.
If I don’t work on loving my husband with intention then those little, seemingly insignificant problems will grow into big and very significant ones. Here’s the deal with loving intentionally…..it requires being selfless, it means putting my husband’s needs above my own. This is so good in theory but soooo hard in reality! I do know that the more that I give of myself to be intentional in showing love to Mike, it goes a long way in making all of those little foxes disappear!