Thursday, March 5, 2009

Love Dare - Day 12

(Photo courtesy of All Posters)
Philippians 2:4 "Do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others."

Chapter highlights...

Defending your rights & opinions is a foundational part of your nature and make-up. It's detrimental, though, inside a marriage relationship & steals away time and productivity. It can also cause great frustration for both of you.

Some things are worth standing up for and protecting. Our priorities, morals and obedience to GOD should be guarded with great effort. But too often we debate over piddly things, like the color of wall paint or the choice of a restaurant.

There's only one way to get beyond stalemates like these, and that's by finding a word that's the opposite of stubborn...that word is "willing." Willingness is an attitude & spirit of cooperation that should permeate our conversations. It's like a palm tree by the ocean that endures the greatest winds because it knows how to gracefully bend.

All it takes for present arguments to continue is for both of you to stay entrenched & unbending. The very moment one of you says, "I'm willing to go your way on this one," the argument will be over. And though the follow through may cost you some pride & discomfort, you have made a loving, lasting investment in your marriage.

The wise & loving thing to do is to start approaching your disagreements with a willingness to not always insist on your own way. That's not to say that your mate is necessarily right or being wise about a matter, but you are choosing to give strong consideration to their preferences as a way of valuing them.

Instead of treating your spouse like an enemy or someone to be guarded against, start by treating them as your closest, most honored friend. Give their words full weight.

Now you won't see eye to eye. You're not supposed to be carbon copies of each other. Rather, your differences are for listening to and learning from.

If it doesn't matter in the long run, especially eternity, then give up your rights and choose to honor the one you love. It will be both good for you and good for your marriage.

Today's dare: Demonstrate love by willingly choosing to give in to an area of disagreement between you and your spouse. Tell them you are putting their preference first.

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