By Mandy Kelly, Contributing Writer
Remember when you were dating or just getting to know your spouse? You spent time learning all kinds of things about them – from their favorite color, favorite cookie, and goals and dreams for life. If you are your spouse were like my husband and I, we talked for hours about everything under the sun. I felt like I knew him better than anyone on the planet – and that there was no one who knew me better than him. He could surprise me with gifts on just the right day – and I knew the right days to get a card in the mail so that it got to him on the day he needed it the most. Yes, I knew my love very well. So, we got married.
I have made it my goal, from the day I said “Yes” with my sweet man down on one knee, until the day Jesus takes one of us home, that I will never stop studying my husband. I am thankful he still takes time to study me. Something we know is a basic fact – people change. Yes, your spouse is going to change. Yes, YOU are going to change! The beauty is, change is okay. Change can be good! However, when we don’t take the time to continually know, to study, our spouse, we often don’t see these changes as they are coming. We see them after the fact, and sometimes, when the change comes, we don’t know where it came from? How can we stay on top of these things in our spouses lives? How do we study our spouse?
1) Spend time together
Give your spouse quality time – even if that isn’t their love language! We need to spend time with our spouses! Not just time in the same room, with her nose in a book and his mind behind the television- no! We need time together! I know we all need time to let our brains relax, and reading, tv watching, Facebook, and other things are ways we do that.
However, we need to spend time together too. Make it a point, at some point in your day to have time with your spouse, preferably, without your children. Different ages and stages require for different times of this. Right now, we spend time together while I am fixing dinner and after the kids go to bed. We have found some things we have in common – and one is even a tv show- that we can spend time together! Make it a priority.
2) Have Conversation!
Now that we have started spending time together- take time to talk! Ask about each others day, what God is teaching them, even how you can pray for them! Being together is great – but if you don’t talk – if you don’t share your hearts, your struggles, and your dreams – you won;t connect at that heart level.
The more you talk – the more you will know about the areas where they are changing, and you can pray with them, for them, and understand what they are going through. Too often, a person in a relationship changes, the spouse has no clue – only because they didn’t talk and spend time together!
3) Plan frequent date times
These are different then your average day-to-day spending time together! Take time to just be a couple. To walk the mall holding hands, to go out to dinner, to be a couple! My husband and I try to go to lunch once a week. Not expensive. Not ultimately time-consuming. Yet, we connect as a couple weekly. It give us the feeling that we are still dating – and I love that!
4) Pay Attention
What I ultimately want from my husband, and what I know he wants from me, is my attention. He wants me to WANT to know him- not just assume I know the him he was the day we got married. He wants me to know the him that he is today. I need to pay attention to my husband – in what he says and does, and in what he doesn’t say and do! The more attention I pay to him, the more I can meet his needs.
I want to know my husbands heart more than anything. I want to know what makes it beat – especially the things that make it beat faster! The more I study him, spend time with him, and really know him – the more he trust me with his heart (Proverbs 31: 11) and wants to share it with me!
I want to spend the rest of my life getting to know, and tenderly loving, my husband – not just for who he was when got married, but the amazing man he is today!