May 13, 2012
I wanted us to (re)listen to the 4th CD of the Love and Respect Conference for Thursday’s act of love. When I suggested it, though, you said something to the effect that you were so exhausted that you only had enough energy to wash the dishes then go to bed. Tears formed in your eyes.
I was also exhausted. I’m talking about the head-throbbing, eye-burning, stomach-turning type. “It’d be nice if you could just skip the dishes and go to bed,” I said, “but they must be washed tonight.” You agreed. “What if I offer to wash them for her,” I thought. Everything inside me screamed “No!” at such a thought. Still, I blurted out, “Go to bed. I’ll wash the dishes.” “Are you sure?” “‘Yeah, I’m sure.” “I’ll tell you what. Why don’t you wash half the dishes, then I’ll wake up early to wash the rest,” you said. “Okay.” When you woke up in the morning, you were surprised that I actually took you up on your offer!
Before we got married, I never knew how much of a battle love is. It was certainly easy to “fall in love” with you. But when the intensity of those feelings faded, every day became an opportunity to decide who to put first, you or me. If I weren’t so self-seeking, perhaps willing the former would be easy. But, as it is, every day and even every hour is a battle to put your needs, desires, etc. first. To put you before me. May I stand strong in the midst of this battle.
April 3, 2012
We listened to the 3rd CD of the Love and Respect Conference on Friday night, which was about the Engergizing Cycle. Per this cycle, when a husband loves his wife, this motivates her to respect him, which respect motivates him to love her (though it’s not necessary for the cycle that it starts with the husband). Dr. Eggerichs, the speaker, offered husbands some advice on how to best love their wives. Though I enjoyed all of what he said, I was especially struck by what he said about loving your wife by listening to her. That’s something I need to work on, as I’ve discussed before in this blog. Sometimes (most of the time?), when you start talking to me about some problem you’re facing, I offer up a solution before you finish. Maybe you aren’t even looking for a solution, but a listening ear.
February 17, 2012
Tonight we listened to the second CD of the Love and Respect Conference. The Crazy Cycle, which perpetuates by the husband’s lack of love and the wife’s lack of respect, surfaces in our marriage every now and again. It’s good to be aware of it so that when we can stop it before it starts.
Lately, I’ve been a little inconsiderate in the way I relate to you. Honestly, in the back of my mind I’m thinking I can get away with it because of everything else I’m doing for you through 365. That’s not very kind. I’m going to work on that before it turns into something big.
February 4, 2012
For yesterday’s act of love, I wanted us to listen to the second Love and Respect CD. It’s been a long time since we listened to the first one, but I’m intent on finishing them all before 365’s up. You thought it was a great idea, but said you were so tired that you didn’t think you could concentrate on it. “What do you want to do instead?” I asked. “What do I want? A back massage,” you replied. I felt a tinge of disinclination, but said yes anyway. In the end, I quite enjoyed giving you a back massage and you quite enjoyed getting one.
November 28, 2011
Five years ago, we attended our first marriage conference: the Love and Respect Conference (loveandrespect.com). We loved it so much and it had such an impact on our marriage that we decided to attend a marriage conference every year; but, we haven’t attended one since (oops). We need to. Right now, we can’t because we have a newborn. Given that, I decided that we could at least listen to a conference from home. So, on Saturday I asked you if you wanted to start listening to the CDs from the Love and Respect Conference. You said yes. We listened to the first CD called “The Crazy Cycle.” At times, we definitely fall into to the Crazy Cycle: my lack of love fuels your lack of respect and vice versa. I’m anxious to listen to the CDs on the Energizing and Rewarded Cycles. Perhaps I’ll learn new ways to love you that I can incorporate into 365 Acts of Love.