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I'm a mother of two beautiful girls. I think Sarcasm is a spiritual gift, even Jesus was sarcastic. I have no patience for people who are not real. I'm a Christian, but I hate how so many Christians have made that a bad word. My goal is to be a strong woman who loves God and encourages other women to do the same. I love upcycling and building things from repurposed items and reclaimed wood. We as women don't always see ourselves for the amazing women we are. It took me a lot of pain and hard work to find out who I am and what I am passionate about. I want other women to find their passions and not let others hold them back. Maybe some of my posts and projects that I will post will encourage other women to be who God wants them to be.

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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Where's the love? Its not enough!

Time and again I meet couples who have been married 7, 10, 13 + years and they tell me that the love has faded in their marriage. First off let me say this is totally normal. That new love feeling in the first few years of a relationship does not last. As great as that feeling is it can't last. That love is a chemical reaction in our bodies, an adrenaline rush, but over time our body adjusts and no longer releases the adrenaline from that feeling. So then what? Is that the end of the marriage? For some people yeah it is, but it does not have to be.

When that love fades we can choose to continue to love our spouse. Each morning I get up and choose to love my husband. It is easy to do now, but a few years ago I didn't even understand what that meant. I had to make it a habit.

Have you ever tried to stop a bad habit? Whether that habit was smoking, not exercising, or eating poorly that bad habit did not go away over night. In most cases you have to replace that bad habit with a good one. The same thing holds true with marriage you have to replace the bad habit of just expecting to feel love with choosing to love. The first few weeks of making that choice it can feel awkward, unnatural even, but the more you do it the easier it gets.

So what does choosing to love look like? Well, it is not getting up each morning, looking at your spouse and going, "love you" and going on with your day. . Choosing to love your spouse is putting them before yourself. This can mean husbands watching the kids so your wife can have a girls night out once a month. Or wives this can mean making a nice food spread before he watches the game with his friends. It obviously varies with each couple. What shows love to you and your and your spouse is going to be different than what another couple does. The key here is that you are making an effort to show love, not for what you can get back in return, but because it is the loving thing to do.

Now you may be asking yourself, but what if I don't feel like I love them anymore? You may have heard the expression "fake it till you make it" well that is sometimes what you have to do when you are choosing to love. When my husband and I nearly divorced a few years ago, he asked a friend of his what he was supposed to do since he didn't feel any love for me. His friend asked him if he had asked God to give him that love back. My husband said he had never thought of that before, but he started praying that prayer and choosing to love me and eventually he was able to find that love again. Before i started choosing to love my husband, I pretty much took him for granted. I loved him, but didn't really take any time to let him know that I loved him. According to him, it didn't even show on my face. However, once we went through our "junk" I was so sure of my love for him that I began to make the effort to choose to love him everyday. Before that you probably could have asked him if he was sure of my love for him and he may have said no, but now you would get a definitive YES.

So take the time this week to choose to love your spouse. Stop waiting for those feelings to be there and replace a bad habit with a good one. Don't expect things to improve over night and don't expect immediate love returned from your spouse, especially if your marriage is in a slump season, but just see how it affects your marriage. God can and will show up and show off.


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