I feel like I need to sit on this dare for a while.
Love seeks to understand. There are moments when it seems like I really need to share more than I do, but in the end, I need to create safe space for you to speak your heart and your mind.
I don’t need to be passive sharing my heart with you. Or my fears or stresses or even failings.
But this dare isn’t about my working through that particular issue. This dare is about you. It’s about my understanding and seeking to understand and being a student of you.
And why is that important? Because you are important. You are precious. You are a gift. You are worth hearing and listening to. You are wise. You have important things to say. Plus I just plain love you. And I’m called to hear you and listen to you.
If husbands love wives like Christ loves the church and He hears our prayers, how much more should I become better at hearing your heart?
I’m scared at what I might hear sometimes, but that’s a ‘me’ problem.
So… until I have the dinner that is called for in this dare (I’m supposed to cook for you, and I’m sure you won’t remember when this dinner took place because my goal is that you don’t see this blog until 5/14/2015 (our 10 year anniversary).
My goal.. my desire to make good on this dare, as I mostly laid out yesterday:
- Ask you questions: Good questions and not just one, but follow up questions. I’m not gonna let you wiggle off the hook. Not that you’re a worm that I’m going fishing with, but you get the picture.
- Listen to you: I’m not going to cut you off. I’m not going to go after a distraction.
- Pray: See God for better understanding if I don’t get it or if something you says touches something off in me.
- NOT solve problems unless you ask me to: I’m going to hold my tongue as long as possible in the solution area. There’ll be plenty of time for that later.
The point of understanding
You’ve suggested before that you, in the past, didn’t think your words or opinion mattered. Your emotions might get cut off. You might not feel totally heard or validated.
I want you to feel the complete opposite with me. Period.
I fell off the wagon on this project after Christmas.
And I’m not sure if it’s a good idea to jump in in the middle of the 40 days, but we’ll go for it. It can’t hurt.
I did this date a few months ago during my first attempt. By ‘a few months ago, it appears to have been over a year ago. Man I suck at this stuff!
So the dare is to prepare a special dinner at home, just for the two of us. I will do this tomorrow or Thursday or Friday (May 21, 22, or 23).
We have so much life going on right now – my dad’s surgery, the end of the school year, Memorial Day weekend.
The main point of the dare is to simply:
- Ask questions
- Ask God for discernment.
I don’t have to cook you dinner (although that’s fun for me) in order to do this dare.
What would be better for me to do is this:
- Put the phone on a shelf
- Make sure the kids are occupied.
- Etch out at least 10 minutes to ask you questions.
- Put fear on the shelf – because sometimes I’m scared to open certain topics. I need to do that, though.
If I want to know you, I can’t be afraid of talking about certain things. That’s so important. It’s a glitch with me: I never want to ruffle feathers. And maybe it’s something that if I don’t fear so much, then you’ll get practice talking about tough things, whether budget stuff or family stuff or faith stuff.
It’s time I start putting on the scuba gear and diving deep.
We’re going to see Matthew Perryman Jones tonight in Duluth.
He was gracious enough to play his song Lead Me to the Waters at our wedding a few days over 8 years ago.
It was nearly impossible to find this song online. It’s not really in his current rotation, I don’t believe. Still, I dropped a hint on his Facebook page in hopes he’ll decide to play it. Heck, we’re bringing 2 other couples who haven’t heard him before. That should count for something, right?
Plus… it’s a beautiful song. If the ‘You’ reading this isn’t my wife, then you should click on the link above. It’s a sweet song.
I can’t always love you because of something sweet, cute, fun, adorable, or whatever that you do.
Same goes from you to me. I know you’ve loved me through being quite the ass at times. I’m thankful for that.
This morning you were in a foul, foul mood. I wasn’t a fan, honestly. I was a little angry. I was a little frustrated at the end of it.
But I’m not called to love you when it’s all rainbows and unicorns and marshmallow clouds.
I’m called to love you even if you don’t want me to. I’m called to love you whether you are providing for my emotional needs at any given moment or not.
I’m simply called to love you. I’m always brought back to the Bible verse that commands me to love my wife like Christ loves the church. That’s unyielding, unflinching, through thick and thin love.
I don’t do it perfectly like Christ does, but I don’t have a choice to lower the standard either. It doesn’t say, “Husbands, love your wives like Christ loves the church when they are fulfilling all your needs and being perfect examples of biblical womanhood.” It’s an unconditional call.
So, sweetie, I love you today, even this morning at like 7:18 when we were having the moment. I love you.
Today is our anniversary. We’ve made it through 8 years.
You are a wonderful wife. You bring me joy. You help me to grow. You make me laugh.
You are a wonderful mother. You are creative. You are consistent. You are determined. You are loving.
We’ve been through a lot in these few years, and I’m thankful that we are still growing individually and together.
I know, for sure, that you have been used by God to help make me a better person: sometimes by your grace, sometimes by your encouragement, and, yes, sometimes by the fact that being married is hard work that requires us to allow the Holy Spirit to dig deep and change us.
You are lovely and beautiful. You make me smile. Sometimes life is a little stressful and hard. But it’s always worth it and it’s getting more and more wonderful.
I love you and look forward to what’s in store.
I don’t think I’ll risk losing the secrecy of this blog, so I’ll go ahead and post this picture. If you happen upon this and know us, feel free to contact me, but please don’t tell my sweet wife yet.
Happy Mother’s Day!
You are a wonderful mom.
You are a beautiful mom.
Your kids love you.
Your husband loves you.
You give who you are to us.
Know that we appreciate it and hope you know how much we realize that we are blessed.
I love you.
First of all, I’m really confused about capitalization and titles of posts. Just wanted to mention that. Which should be capitalized, which not?
I know we don’t always agree. And I know we are sometimes at odds, but in general we’re on the same page…
1. Our faith
2. Our approach to parenting
3. Our opinion about debt (although I need to work on the execution piece)
4. Our love of fun times over food
5. Our approach to keeping the house the way it needs to be
6. Our alignment as it relates to our families
I’m sure there’s a few more. So many married couples aren’t on the same page. I’m thankful we are.
We could probably use an argument here or there, though. Just for fun if not for anything else. Plus I think it might show us where we’re not on the same page. It’d be good to be aware of those things too.
That sound romantic, doesn’t it?
But it was really good. So were the homemade mashed potatoes and the sautéed green beans.
In my humble opinion, meatloaf is the world’s most underrated type of loaf. Better than olive or any other kind of loaf of which I’m familiar.
As a matter of fact, I just ate the leftovers for lunch. And I liked ‘em.
Knowing what I know about a lot of households these days, I’m thankful that you like to prep a solid meal and serve it up (and I’m guessing you enjoy the fact that I, too, enjoy cooking up meals for you).
It’s fun to share those duties and I love it when you get all into a home cooked meal.
I think it’s because I love to eat.
I don’t mean to make this blog about what you do for me. But sometimes what you do is an indicator of your heart.
For you to bring in the trash cans – traditionally my chore, traditionally a dude’s job, really reveals your servant’s heart. You had dirt and grime. We live on a big ginormous hill. You got plenty else to do without this little annoyance. Yet, the last few weeks, you’ve brought in the cans.
You are such a smart, strong woman, yet you serve me kindly and generously.
I only hope you feel half as served by me (bad sentence, but hopefully you get the point).
I love you!
We’re in Atlanta. The Storyline (Don Miller’s conference) will be in Nashville in October.
I’m so geeked out about wanting to go to this with you! I know you’re not as big of a conference freak as I am (as a matter of fact, since we’ve been married and had kids, I think I’ve not really gone to any), but I think it would be so much fun for the two of us.
So… I texted the parents and will probably make sure we go even if my parents can’t keep the kids that weekend. We got 6 months. I’m sure we can figure out something by way of childcare.
Question for others who might read this thing: How many of you have gone to a non-marriage conference with your spouse? Did it strengthen your relationship to go through that kind of thing, even if it wasn’t directly related to marriage? Just curious!