Abundant life, Encouragement, Leadership, marriage enrichment, Salvation, Soul Winning

Ignite the Spark

Valentines Day is tomorrow so I hope all of you have practiced these romantic ideas all week.  If you haven’t and just can’t seem to jump the hurdle to be romantic because you think it is to no end to boredom then I suggest an idea that may take up to three weeks to work.  It is the love language called, “Acts of Service”.

If you really want to damage a relationship and increase the pain and misery in your marriage, then be selfish.  If you look at the root causes of the majority of reasons people give for divorce, you will find both are being selfish.  If what you really want out of life is an unhealthy and unhappy marriage, then be selfish.  You can use excuses for instance, “He don’t ever, She don’t do this, He needs to do more, I am tired of doing everything, I deserve to be happy, and the list goes on.  Selfishness is in one degree or another is a part of all of us and it is in our nature to be selfish so we have to work against that.  The pleasure we may gain about ourselves may make us feel good but the consequences are not.  Being selfish will drive people away.  We tend to hide our selfish desires while dating but we get married we let our selfish tendencies loose.  People try to keep selfishness under control but when it will continue to grow like a poison as soon as you exhibit selfish behavior.

How can we learn to control selfish tendencies so that it doesn’t destroy your most treasured relationship?  The antidote to selfishness is service. It is difficult to be selfish when you are serving your spouse.  Service forces you to put the needs of your spouse in front of your needs.  They key to a strong marriage is the mindset of thinking of your spouse’s needs before your own.  When you use this key a spirit of service will soon begin to permeate your relationship.  The spirit of service is contagious.  On average, it takes 3 weeks for a spouse to return the service.  What happens when one starts to give give give and it seems like it didn’t work it is usually because they stop giving to soon.  Consistent in demonstrating your love by acts of service will ignite the spark to a more fulfilling relationship.

As you both serve each other by eliminating selfish behaviors, you will experience joy and happiness that accompanies service and less empty pleasure followed by pain and misery that accompanies selfishness.  Think of things right now that you can do for your spouse that you wouldn’t normally do.  Like I said yesterday, I get up early in the mornings to fix breakfast, coffee and write, so when my husband gets up last, he makes the bed up.  I return the favor by fixing him coffee and welcoming him with a good morning kiss.  Sound mushy to you and think your spouse would never do that?  Try serving for three weeks and see what happens!  My marriage is not always perfect but we have harmony in which a spark never has to go out because of acts of service.  Jeff’s love language is acts of service so to feel loved it is as if he says, “Cut the talk and do something around here”.  You may think that criticism is something you wouldn’t put up with but if your spouse criticizes you in this manner then maybe his love language is acts of service.  If he comes home and the house is a mess it doesn’t matter what you do to please him in the bedroom, his love bank will be close to empty because he doesn’t feel love in the home.  You can take this test online at http://www.fivelovelanguages.com.

Now I know what some of you may be thinking, “I don’t want to be a slave”.  Acts of services should be given freely not made to.  Demands will stop the flow of love.  Learning to speak this love language may require some of us to re-examine our stereotypes of the roles of husbands and wives and can be difficult but can be done!

Jesus gave simple but profound illustration of expressing love by an act of service when He washed the feet of His disciples.  In a culture where people wore sandals and walked on dirt streets, it was customary for the servant to wash feet.  It was something that no one thought he would do.  So think about some things today you could do that just might surprise your spouse.  So, don’t be surprised when they return the favor and let the sparks fly.  You will wake up on Valentines Day with a flame of passion burning within, then I think you know what to do with that!

Prayer:  Lord help us to understand it is about You and sharing your love by displaying your love through acts of service.  Jesus remove the selfishness in my heart and replace it with a tender giving heart.  Let your creative ways be implanted into my heart to do the things that show your love and giving.  In Jesus Name.  Amen

John 3:16 New International Version (©1984)
“For God so loved the world that he GAVE  his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

God GAVE = GIVING ALWAYS – extending the acts of service to promote life

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