Feb 11 2014

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One Key to a Happy Marriage

happy marriage

One Key to a Happy Marriage

I used to keep my eyes on my husband and criticized him (in my head or sometimes out loud). With my eyes on him, I gave little to no attention to what I should be doing as a wife. Neither of us were perfect, but I magnified his faults and minimized mine. This created a greater rift between us–and I was the one making it wider by my misdirected attention. One key to a happy marriage is in knowing who you are–and keep your eyes on what you should be doing. This quote has a goal for the husband and for the wife.

Husband and Wife Goals

As I linger on the is quote, I feel embarrassed by how easily I gloss past the wife goal and focus on the husband goal. I start thinking of all the things a husband could do to make a wife sorry to see him go. I create a long, long mental list. This is because I know myself so well. I know my longings. I know what pleases me. (Self easily seeks to please self.) But as a wife, my goal is not to become more focused on my husband’s part in the dance of marriage. My goal is to know what makes him glad to come home. (Keep in mind that the concept is not exclusive to stay-at-home moms. It is more of what we do, within marriage, to draw each other into a deeper, closer, satisfying relationship.)

Wife Goals

So, since I am a wife, I must ask myself these questions:

  • What makes my husband glad to come home? Or, in what ways do I invite relationship that is enjoyable for him?
  • What efforts am I making to move in that direction? What is something I can do right now?
  • If I am not, what am I wait for? Or, what do I need from God to do what is right?

I write this having failed at this many times throughout my marriage. My responsibility rests wholly on my shoulders not on what my husband does or does not do. (I cannot give myself permission to behave badly if he has behaved badly. Nor should I imagine that his good behavior will propel me to do what is right. The choice is mine.)

Husband Goals

I am not the husband, but if he is to husband well, he must ask himself questions too:

  • What makes my wife sorry to see me leave? Or, in what ways do I demonstrate love to her in a way that is meaningful to her?
  • What efforts am I making to move in that direction? What is something I can do right now?
  • If I am not, what am I waiting for? Or, what do I need from God to do what is right?

Affirm the good

If you are going to focus on what your spouse is doing or not doing, look for the good–even if it is a small baby step in the right direction–and express your words of thanks. Your spouse can’t read your mind, and your words of affirmation might just stoke both of your feelings of love for each other.

This goal is not a Valentine’s Day goal, it is a marriage goal. If you started today, it could make for a happy marriage and a happier Valentine’s Day.

Three resources you can use

  1. 75 Ways to Respect Your Husband It’s a list. Wives, this list is a long list. Choose a few from the list and go do it. If nothing else, commit to #1.
  2. Love & Respect: The Love She Most Desires; The Respect He Desperately Needs (affiliate link) This book speaks to both husbands and wives.
  3. The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts (affiliate link) Another good book that identifies 5 different ways we give and receive love. Learn how to speak your spouse’s “love language.”

Would your marriage be better if you focused on your goal?

A happy marriage exists when both the husband and wife focus on their own goals. That is ideal. But even if only one spouse did, don’t you think the marriage would be better for it?

Note: I found the quote from brainyquote.com.

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Permanent link to this article: http://realinginlife.com/good-words-husband-and-wife-goals/


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