Deserving the Best

April 19, 2012

in the generous life

My husband shared a rather challenging and insightful post yesterday. I share part of it here ~

I suspect more than a few marriage problems boil down to husband and/or wife giving their spouse only as much as they think they “deserve”. They keep a mental record of things done right and things done wrong. They give only what they feel they must, or only what they think is required by what their spouse has done or not done. At the same time, such people calculate what they deserve from their spouse based on what they have and have not done for their spouse. Aside from the fact that this seems unbiblical, it is based on the false premise that we are a fair judge of ourselves and our spouse. Human nature is such most of us over rate ourselves, and underrate our spouse. If both husband and wife are giving only what they calculate is “deserved” then both will be giving less than their spouse feels they deserve, and that means each will lower what they think their spouse deserves. It’s easy to see how this ends, and it’s not pretty.

My choice, and it is a choice, is to see my wife as deserving the best I can give her, all the time. That means even when she has been bitchy, and even when I’ve had a long day. I don’t always succeed, but I do better and better as I keep working on it. Is my choice the best way to go? Frankly, I think the Bible more than hints that it’s how we are to treat others – not just our spouse, but all others in general and our spouse in particular. That aside, it’s certainly a more marriage positive and marriage building choice than trying to discern what she deserves.

I find that the “giving your spouse what they have earned” perspective is absolutely exhausting. Keeping track and sorting things out just takes too much time and effort. It’s really very freeing to simply choose to be generous. The other thing is that I want my behavior to be about who I am and a reflection of what God is doing in me, not some complicated equation of who has earned what.

Treat everyone with politeness, even those who are rude to you – not because they are nice, but because you are.   Author Unknown

Image credit (c) Mitarart | Dreamstime.com

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The sweetest post I’ve read in quite awhile ~ Burned Biscuits (from Square1 Ministries) This guy gets it.  

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Hoo, boy, “J” you are a crazy woman and I’m lovin’ it ~ Your Sex Life is Funny… So Laugh  (author of Hot, Holy & Humorous guest writing on Happily Married After) 

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Nice perspectives from Journey to Surrender ~ Own Your Own Happiness  This is one of those read and chew on it posts.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Karyl April 19, 2012 at 4:31 am

Great advice! Love the final quote.

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Sis April 19, 2012 at 7:55 am

We’ve been emailing each other the 3 positive things for 21 days idea that you had. I love it, I don’t think we’re going to quit after 21 days.

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