In my last post in What to Pray to Find the Right Spouse, I mentioned that there were two ways to get the perfect spouse: find the right person and allow them to become the right person. This post will tackle the second option.
When I got engaged, I loved my wife as best as I knew, but as I look back I think the major motivation was to find someone who made me feel loved. I had a deep hole and I latched on to the person that made even a small effort to fill it. I can see now how I set myself up for major issues in marriage, therefore I am constantly encouraged by the wife God did give me.
However, there have been several things I had done right after the wedding vows. Early on in our marriage we started the habit of praying together every night before going to bed. I also prayed on my own for our marriage, specifically that our marriage would reflect Christ’s love for His Church. We attended marriage conferences and read marriage books to give priority to getting all that God had for us out of our marriage. Therefore while my motives may not have been pure going in, we developed our marriage well. Here are some areas for your to consider as you develop your own marriage.
7 Ways to Develop a Perfect Spouse
Spending time with God with your spouse and alone is the greatest thing you can do for your marriage. God delights in your marriage and offers help to make sure you experience every blessing He has hidden there. Commit your marriage to God.
Love requires a submission of our interests to that of our spouse. Mutual submission creates a place of life-giving love. This is not a call to think that you are not important, but it is a call to place an importance on your spouse’s interests.
Your spouse is an individual with complex motivations, emotions, feelings, and interests. Enter into their lives and draw them out. Just when you think you know them, they will surprise you. Marriage is enjoyed together and communication creates togetherness.
“You can’t have quality time without quantity time.” If you spouse never sees you except when you lay down in bed beside them, they can never know you. Your spouse was created to be a help-mate—wives and husbands. Share your life with them by spending time with them. Turn off the TV. Get off Facebook. Allow them to see your face and realize that you have love in your eyes for them.
This may seem counter intuitive, but your spouse cannot carry the weight of all your relational needs. You need friends that will build into you and support your marriage. You need people to help you process things about your marriage. They can help you see potential problems within your marriage without condemning either of you.
Make a commitment never to say unkind words to your spouse or about your spouse to others. You have the power to build a powerful ally or a consistent thorn in the flesh, and your words are the tools to get you there. Honor your spouse with your words and you will be well on the way towards a happy life.
Remember the power of marriage created one flesh between you and your spouse. Blessing your spouse is a blessing for yourself. Ask God how He sees your spouse and determine to see them the same way. Speak those same words over them and create a home where life is continually given.
There is no way I have exhausted this list. What would you add? Please leave comments on things you have found helpful in building into your marriage.
-Loose all expectations. This leads to higher levels of appreciation.
It will be hard for someone to loose all expectations, and I’m not sure that will be all good. However, I completely agree with your second point. Especially forgiving your spouse when they don’t meet your expectations. 🙂