Monday, September 13, 2010

Dare 38

"Delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart." -Psalm 37:4
Love fulfills dreams. It brings me great sadness when I hear people talk about 'everything they had to give up' when they got married. Marriage should give you wings you didn't know you had. Not clip the ones you were growing crippling you from ever taking flight!
What is something your spouse would really, really love? It doesn't have to be something expensive. Fortunately, Zane likes inexpensive things (I say fortunately for our finances sake, but I do love giving gifts!). What he really loves is an unexpected kiss, or an excited smile on my face just to let him know I'm crazy about him even more now then back in college. I have a journal that I have kept since our first date. He gets a huge smile when he finds a new entry that he didn't know existed (as long as it includes something good...not a recent argument).
Sometimes in marriage, we can get so accustomed to saying 'no' that we can make our spouse feel worthless--like the opinion doesn't carry weight, and they don't have your respect. But love sometimes needs to be extravagant. Blessing because it wants to...blessing because that is what love does. Sometimes your love for your spouse may not feel like putting forth any effort...but let me allow Kendrick to put both of us in our place: "Hasn't God's love met needs in your heart that once seemed out of the question? You were living under such a load of sin and regret you thought you'd never earn your way back into His good graces. But He looked at you with love and said you didn't have to. He wanted you back. He wanted you to realize your need for Him, and that as you repented and turned to Him, He would love and forgive you." "God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, amde us alive together with Christ" Ephesians 2: 4-5. And another love letter in Romans 5, verse 8: "God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."
He's your model. He's the One your love is designed to imitate. Though you weren't a likely candidate for His love, He gave it anyway. He paid the price. (Kendrick) So even when you don't feel like loving, do it anyway. God calls us to. He demands it. And nothing He tells us to do does He make us do alone. He is by us willing and able to get our hearts into loving extravagantly!
1)love calls you to listen to what your mate is saying and hoping for
2)love calls you to remember the things that are unique to your relationship, the pleasures and enjoyments that bring a smile to the other's face
3)love calls you to give when it would be a lot more convenient to wait
4)love calls you to daydream about these opportunities so regularly that their desires become yours as well

Love dares you to think in terms of overwhelming your spouse with love!

Dare 38: Ask yourself what your mate would want if it was obtainable. Commit this to prayer, and start mapping out a plan for meeting some (if not all) of their desires, to whatever level you possibly can.

Dare 37: Pray together.

Dare 36: Read the Bible daily.

Dare 35: Seek guidance in a mentor.

Dare 34: Celebrate godliness.

(For previous dares, refer to earlier entries.)

--Inspired by Kendrick's "The Love Dare"

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