Thursday, January 24, 2013

Be My Valentine Challenge...Week One

Last night, something very interesting happened. I got the following text from my husband (who was in the room next to where I was):

I love you Baby. You are like an angel. Thank you for all you do. Love, Adam
If you read my introductory post for this Be My Valentine challenge, you might catch the significance. I mentioned a quote that I thought was going to be super important in our lives. At the very end it said that  "Only then does he recognize in her God’s angel of mercy. (JR Miller)” My husband has always been very loving and through most of our married life, I received a note every day. They only stopped once we swapped roles and it was him driving off to work in the mornings. He sure knows how to express himself, but seriously..."You are like an angel." ?!?

So let me let you in on a little of what has happened since starting this challenge.
First off...this weeks instruction is to "Take the Initiative! Look for ways to praise your husband verbally."
I have been praising my husband on Facebook, but I have also spent a lot of time encouraging him face to face. I think praise like "you did really good on ___" is great...but I think that I am learning something new about praise through all of these transitions.

I think when I say things like "I have full confidence that you are going to do a wonderful job at your store because you love people and have integrity," that it signifies praise in his past work while letting him know I am secure in our future. I can't have full confidence if he isn't doing good already, right? The thing about speaking words about your husband is that it becomes something to fall back on in trying times. When he makes a mistake, I can remember that he is a good-willed man...he isn't trying to do something that might hurt me.

So I think praising my man should center around the content of his character. That is what is most important. Circumstances are just that...circumstantial. He might be in a place where his character is rewarded. He might be in a place that his character causes him trouble (it's not like the world always likes dealing with men of integrity). If I can continue to focus on his character, it will change my perspectives and give so many more opportunities for real praise.

I'm trying to put action with my praises as well. The things I praise my husband for, I am thankful for. Since I am so thankful, I want to show him more. So I do a lot more to make his life easier and make him feel special. Getting up this week to fix his breakfast since the store hasn't opened yet was a minor sacrifice with a major significance for my husband. He has had the energy to get through the day, and he gets some extra time with his wife. We have shared wonderful conversations, and for some reason it feels a lot more like when we were dating in the mornings than at night after the boys go to bed.

So that simple statement "You are like an angel" meant a whole lot to me. It felt like God's stamp on our envelope. He could have said anything...but I was looking to be my husband's "angel of mercy" during this time. Glad to know that I am my husband's angel.

...and looking forward to many more opportunities to encourage and praise my sweet man.

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