A few days ago, we celebrated something we call Thanksgiving Day. What a blessed time of peaceable celebrating! This is an official holiday where we pause to give God thanks for our many blessings.
Personally, it was a great day for us with family and friends. But we learned an important lesson. We need to pare back on trying to prep all the food in one day. It’s too exhausting! Thank you, Lord for this reminder that we need to set better limits! Next year: new plan!
In the meantime, we’re all about continuing the celebration (without all the food prep)! Here’s a great way to do that:
“Count Your Blessings. Every day, take some time to think about all the things you’re thankful for. Even better, tell your spouse all the ways you’re thankful for them.” (Drs Les & Leslie Parrott)
Here are a few suggestions for doing that:
• “First, tell your spouse how valuable they are to you. That’s so simple and obvious! You assume they already know it; but don’t assume. Like a bulb that doesn’t light due to a break in the electric circuit, a family member who isn’t told she or he is valuable may never shine bright. Until you complete the circuit with your words, the light of honor may never glow in her or his life.” (Dr Gary Smalley)
To do this:
“Think about your husband [or your wife] for a minute. Quickly list three things that you love about him [or about her]. Now go and tell him.” [If it’s your wife, tell her.] (Lori Byerly) “Appreciation can make a day, even change a life. Your willingness to put it into words is all that is necessary.” (Margaret Cousins)
Concerning Peaceable Celebrating we’re told:
“Be joyful always. Pray continually. Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.“ (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)
Along this line, here’s a tip that can bring great joy:
• “After being away from each other for a while, meet again with an affectionate welcome. The 10 second kiss ‘rule’ is a great one for a happy marriage. It’s something to look forward to all day after you leave the house in the morning.
Also, we wouldn’t want to be ‘guilty’ of disobeying God’s word. See what Solomon says in Song of Solomon 1:2: ‘Kiss me again and again, your love is sweeter than wine.‘ Do yourself a favor. Try the 10 second kiss!” (Steve Wright, Marriage Missions)
Did you know?
• “A kiss is definitely more than a kiss. Here are a few facts about smooching: • A one minute kiss works off 26 calories. • Our brains have special neurons that help us find our mate’s mouth in the dark. • A passionate kiss quickens your heart rate to 100 beats per minute. • Kissing reduces tooth decay because the extra saliva generated by a lip-lock cleans your teeth. • Nine out of ten couples in happy relationships kiss before bed.” (Redbook, January 2006)
So, make it a point to:
“Greet one another with a holy kiss.“ (Romans 16:16)
Remember, showing love to your spouse is a God-sanctioned action!
Additional Tips for Your Peaceable Celebrating:
• “Never discuss sensitive subjects when you’re hungry. On an empty stomach, we tend to be more irritable and cranky, compromising our ability to focus. If you need to discuss something serious with your mate, check his/her appetite first.” (Sheryl Kurland)
Also, you might want to check out Timing Your Talks to read about the H.A.L.T. Theory.
Biblically, we’re told:
“Do you see a man who speaks in haste? There is more hope for a fool than for him.“ (Proverbs 29:20)
Here’s another tip:
• “Eat marshmallows to improve communication. If you have a mouthful of marshmallows, the one thing you absolutely cannot do is ‘talk.’ That’s precisely the point! Communication is more about listening than talking.” (Sheryl Kurland)
“When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise.” (Proverbs 10:19) “He who answers before listening—that is his folly and shame.“ (Proverbs 18:13)
• “Family gatherings can be danger zones. Make a list of what not to talk about at these events.” (Sheryl Kurland, from article “Humorous Tips”)
“Do not be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God. God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few.“ (Ecclesiastes 5:2)
Lest we forget:
• “Married life teaches one valuable lesson: to think of things far enough ahead not to say them.” (Jefferson Machamer)
To achieve a peaceable celebration every day, remember:
• “When there’s a fork in the road … If there are two ways to interpret something your spouse said to you and one makes you unhappy or angry; pick the other one.” (Sheryl Kurland)
“Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable —if anything is excellent or praiseworthy —think about such things.“ (Philippians 4:8)
“If you’re looking for an offense, you’re going to find it. If you’re looking for the good in a situation, you will find that also. There is good and bad in every situation. Choose to look for the good and be a dispenser of grace whenever possible.”
Keep in mind:
“Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam; so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out.” (Proverbs 17:14)
You may want to:
• “Mimic your kids. Give yourselves a ‘time-out’ when the ‘relationship’ is misbehaving. Time-outs work equally well for adults. When the two of you are in the heat of a disagreement, one person needs to say ‘stop.’ Set an alarm clock for 30 minutes. Go your separate ways. Cool off. Think about the problem. Re-focus. Regain your composure. When the alarm rings, sit down together and have a civil discussion, get to the root of the matter, find a resolution and move on.” (Sheryl Kurland, from her article, “Humorous Tips”)
Live out these principles:
“…Live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle. Be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.“ (Ephesians 4:1-3)
• “Let [your husband] know that he’s your hero. Generally speaking, household tasks that women consider ordinary to do, such as loading and unloading the dishwasher, folding laundry, wiping down counter tops, vacuuming, etc., are quite EXTRAORDINARY for men. On a point scale of 1 to 100, for a wife they are worth about 2 points. To a husband, EACH is worth 99.9 points! Wives, find it in yourself to say ‘thank you,’ give him a big hug, tell him how much you appreciate what he did. You will get more in return than every imagined.” (Sheryl Kurland)
And men—this is important for you to do also:
Thank your wife for things that are important to you—all those little things that make your life easier. Don’t take her for granted. There is nothing written in your marriage license that says she has to do these things. Please realize that saying, ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ for even little things is like giving her little care packages of the heart. Also, thank your wife sometimes for NOT doing something, which is important to you that she didn’t do. An example of that would be, for NOT embarrassing you in front of others when you did something you wish you hadn’t, etc. All of this is vitally important to grow her love for you and your love for each other.
“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.“ (Colossians 3:15)
Both of you: Make it a point to:
• “Strive to out-please each other. Out-pleasing each other means putting your spouse’s happiness first —especially in the mundane moments of life. But don’t keep score. Marriage breaks down when you constantly compare your sacrifices to your mate’s. Concentrate on giving and you will become one.” (Jim Magruder)
“May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.“ (Romans 15:5-6)
That is our hope for you—that you will glorify God in how you treat each other—now, and in the years to come.
Cindy and Steve Wright.
— ADDITIONALLY —
To help you further, we give a lot of personal stories, humor, and more practical tips in our book, 7 ESSENTIALS to Grow Your Marriage. We hope you will pick up a copy for yourself. (It’s available both electronically and in print form.) Plus, it can make a great gift for someone else. It gives you the opportunity to help them grow their marriage. And who doesn’t need that? Just click on the linked title or the picture below:
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