By David & Angie Benjamin, Contributing Writers
I was planning to post a different article on a different topic, but the Lord really impressed my heart regarding this issue.
How many times do we take our spouses for granted? How often do we trivialize the good things that they do and assume that that all they do is after all ‘their responsibility’ or ‘what is expected of them’. As it is with everything in life, when trivialize what our spouses do well, we fall into the trap paying attention to all the things we wish things were different about them. We spend our time complaining and slipping into bitterness and lose sight of the greatness that is in them.
But have you ever stopped to really analyze all what your spouse does, “because he/she has to” yet many actually don’t do it? Have ever thought of the fact that not every wife/husband lives up to their responsibilities and do what your spouse does.
Let me give you some examples:
Suppose my husband has some difficulties in expressing himself and does not communicate in a way I would like him to or like it was previously the case he works long hours and is always busy. The tendency and perhaps the human, flesh influenced reaction is to complain and focus my attention on my desire to change in these areas. These would in turn make me lose sight of the things that he does well (which although some maybe his responsibilities, not every wife is blessed enough to have a husband who does) such as the fact that HE IS HOME! (he could be somewhere else, with friends or having fun…alone, on his own); He’s a great dad and he’s always involved in taking care of our daughter, from feeding her, changing her, giving her a bath and playing with her (despite being tired, he always has a smile for me or for her). Whenever he’s home he’s so involved and willing to help. He’s a great dad not because that’s what “a dad does” or what “a dad has to do”…because I know he could chose to not to.
Conversely, I might not be the perfect homemaker, the best cook (I don’t consider myself a good cook at all, though Dave might say otherwise), I might not always communicate with the best attitude or in the best way. The easiest thing would be for my husband to focus on these weaknesses and forget strengths and things that I have done sacrificially such as the fact I decided to put my career on hold and start a family. I still decided to be a stay at home mom and raise our children. Not because I have to, because I want to. The bible urges us in Philippians 4:6 to not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
So what would happen if we change our perspectives on our spouses’ attitudes and actions? What would happen if we stop taking things for granted? Thinking that that’s the way it should work, and that’s what “PEOPLE DO”.
Wouldn’t we find contentment and a deep feeling of a gratitude would flow from our heart?
1 Chronicles 16:34 NIV
Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.