Today Eric and I celebrate 8 months of marriage! Just a blip in time, should God see fit to give us decades, yet every day seems like a reason to celebrate since we know it is His grace that prospers our union. We know it's not of us that we can say the last 8 months have been beautiful, glorious, delightful, exciting, wonderful, etc. Sure there have been hard days, and moments when we miscommunicate, sin against each other, or just plain wonder how to do this "marriage thing." But the general pattern has been one of "happily ever after," and we're so thankful for the ways our Savior has taught us and covered over our sinfulness!
As I was pondering lessons learned over the last months, I confess I thought, "Why share anything? We're so inexperienced, and there are so many who know so much more!" But in the end, I realized that we who are in Christ are here to encourage each other, so even if the following thought was one you learned decades ago, perhaps we can inspire you once again!
I decided to pick one key learning from amongst many: one I need to live out every single day!
- Speak encouraging words to your spouse, no matter what you "feel."
Now I'm not saying you should lie to them, or avoid addressing issues or struggles, but it seems key and so Biblical to encourage them in the Word and also to choose to see good in them to build up.
"Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear." ~Ephesians 4:29
"Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God"
~ Colossians 3:17
"Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing."
~1 Thessalonians 5:11
A couple of fabulous results I've noticed when Eric and I seek to encourage each other and speak words that build up and don't tear down?
- We both become more excited and motivated to run our race as Christians better.
- It encourages humility as we focus on each other's good traits rather than our own.
- We feel safe with each other as we know we will both seek to use words that give life to the other and don't mock or destroy.
- We feel closer together and more eager to spend time together.
- The more we look for ways to encourage each other, the more we see to encourage.
I'm so thankful God has given me these months with Eric, and I hope and pray our marriage becomes more and more every day a reflection of Christ and His church!