4/21/16: Say It; Show It
In order to effectively communicate with someone emotionally, it’s necessary to speak his or her language. I’m bilingual when it comes to the love languages* I best understand. I’m a wordsmith, so it makes sense that hearing words of affirmation mean the most to me. If you want me to know you love me, appreciate me, or need me, tell me. But right up there, coming in neck-and-neck at the wire of importance to me is acts of service. In addition to telling me what I need to hear, show me how much you care by what you do for me. When my husband does either one of these, I actually blush, I can’t help smiling, and I remember why I married him!
Believe it or not, it takes some work to maintain a loving environment in all relationships. Don’t be like the man in the joke. When his wife complained that he hadn’t told her that he loved her since their wedding day, he responded, “I told you once; I’ll let you know when I change my mind.” What are we doing on a day-to-day basis to keep our relationships fresh and vibrant? The little things speak volumes. Change the light bulb, keep the car cleaned out and running smoothly, send an “I love you” text message, fill the copier with paper, clean out the break room refrigerator.
When on the receiving end of gestures such as these, don’t miss them. Don’t disregard a kindness as an expectation. It is said that people don’t have to be nice, and they certainly don’t have to be nice to you. We need to be careful to pick up on the nice things our spouse, friends, and family members do for us. The prodigal son’s brother had missed this idea. He complained when his father threw a party for his wayward brother, saying that the father had never thrown a party for him although he had faithfully stayed and hadn’t broken his father’s heart. The father replied, “Son, you are always with me, and all that I have is yours” Luke 15:31 (NKJ).
Realize that our spouse, friends, and family members are there for us. We’re blessed to have them. Let’s be grateful today for the day-to-day love of the ones we love.
*According to Gary Chapman, the five love languages are:
- Words of Affirmation
- Acts of Service
- Physical Touch
- Quality Time
- Receiving Gifts From The Four Seasons of Marriage, published by Tyndale House Publishers. Copyright © 2005 by Gary Chapman.
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