As a spin off of yesterday’s post Is That OK?, I want to talk about respecting differences.
One of my mantras is “People are more important than things.”
If I demand that my husband stack the dishes in the dish drain the way I do, I have not treated him with love and respect. A stack of dishes is not more important than my husband. My preferences are not more important than my husband.
I realize that may be a bit hard to hear. We like to have things our way. It’s more comfortable for us and it works for us. However, we are not the only ones in the relationship. Our husband likes his way too. It’s more comfortable for him and it works better for him.
Navigating those differences can be hard. I won’t lie to you.
There is an element of sacrifice when it comes to love and respect. You are making room for another person. You are sometimes giving way to what he wants and what works for him. It may not be convenient or comfortable for you.
The thing about it is, when you are able to embrace him and his differences, you are opening a door for intimacy and growth as a couple. It’s healing. It’s mature. It’s loving. Like calls to like and your behavior will call to those same things in your husband. (Years ago when I started experimenting with generosity, I was shocked by my husband’s response. He caught it and answered back in generosity.)
Yes, the day to day personal sacrifice of making room for your spouse and their differences has a price tag, but it is worth the cost in what it does for each of you and your marriage relationship.
Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:4 ESV
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