When people first get married, they make typical sweet gestures, like giving flowers and chocolates.
But after years of marriage, their needs change. Those earlier romantic actions may still bring a smile to your spouse’s face, but if you hand over a bunch of flowers and walk out of the room while the kids are screaming, she may think, “What on earth am I supposed to do with these?”
There are more practical things you can do to show your spouse you love him or her. Here are a few.
Emphasize acts of service.
Deal with the children. Make dinner. While it’s fine to have certain defined roles, you should go above and beyond to share the load. Sticking too rigidly to your prescribed tasks could place an undue burden on your spouse.
Ask what you can do to show your love.
Sometimes you have the best intentions and jump in to “help” a spouse — only to find you’re making a situation worse.
Clear communication will help you avoid this. One example: Tell your spouse, “When you do (this action), I know it’s you loving me.” You’ll be surprised at how much conflict can be avoided by this simple gesture.
Don’t forget to pray for each other.
This may seem obvious, but in the heat of the moment, it’s easy to think about your own uncomfortable feelings. You may forget to pray or decide you don’t feel like it.
But saying a quick, quiet prayer should be one of the first things you do. Just don’t use that as an excuse to avoid physically helping your spouse! Prayer should lead to action.
Much of married life is learning to sacrifice yourself for the other person, even in times of stress. That’s how we imitate Christ’s love for us. And even then, we don’t have to go as far as He did. You’re not dying on a cross for the sins of the world, so you can certainly shoulder your share of the household responsibilities.