Little Things

June 4, 2014

in the generous life

Paul had a really tough day last week … lots of computer woes and a fair amount of physical work. By dinner time he was beat.

I fixed his dinner and brought it to the table. I pulled the tomatoes into the garage (we’re hardening them off and nights are still fairly cool here) and made jello with fruit (out usual evening treat). As I went through the evening, if there was something I could do that he normally did, I took care of it.

The next day he told me how much he appreciated that I took care of so many little things to make his day easier. He felt genuinely cared for and understood.

Being gracious and generous toward your husband doesn’t have to be huge or difficult. Sometimes it’s just about being aware and taking care of the little things.

It is the greatest of all mistakes to do nothing because you can only do little – do what you can.  Sydney Smith

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The Forgiven Wife: Journey of Change – I love stories and this 3-part story is sooo encouraging. In the BeginningGate-keeper to Refuser and Back Again and One Year of Change. Thanks, “Janna,” for your transparency.

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Happy Wives Club: 8 Crucial Things I Would Tell My Younger Self About Marriage This is one of those posts that needs ruminating. Each item on the list is solid.

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Are you shopping online this week? Please start on the Shop and Support TGW page. It won’t change your purchase price, but I will receive a small commission.

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Image courtesy of Simon Howden / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

IntimacySeeker June 4, 2014 at 10:38 am

Nice post. The seemingly small things can make a big difference in our relationships. We can carry this approach beyond our spouses and extend the same courtesies to children, colleagues, and so on. Thank you for nudging us toward greater generosity!

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Lori - The Generous Wife June 5, 2014 at 10:52 am

Definitely. All the other people in our lives need little bits of kindness too. :)

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libl June 5, 2014 at 2:58 am

Hi, Lori,

This is so true and something that seems to come naturally to me. I love doing things for hubby to ease his burdens, lighten his load and help him feel better. I love making him.feel better.

Unfortunately, it isn’t reciprocated. Not that I expect tit for tat, but after over a decade of marriage, I realized there is little to nothing in return. I chalk it up to personality and love language differences, but even when I point blank ask, I get deflected or he’ll have-baked put in the effort. I would come home from the hospital after giving birth to find all the chores waiting for me. Dishes piled in the sink, laundry heaped up, etc. I don’t feel well and let him know and he rattles off hi list of problems and ailments. I’ll be honest, after over a decade of this it takes an act of God to get me to be so giving to him. Instead of a natural response, it is a chosen act and I have to fight resentment.

I can’t make him be more giving. I can talk until I am blue in the face, but it won’t change him. So, how do I handle the boundaries, the resentment battles, and continue being generous?

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Lori - The Generous Wife June 5, 2014 at 10:50 am

The hard truth is that we live in a fallen world and we will sometimes suffer from the consequences of other folk’s bad behavior. We can’t change them, but we can decide who to be and live that out. Yes, his behavior feels selfish, but do you want to be selfish too? Don’t let what he does push you into being someone you don’t want to be.

I would encourage you to ask God for a picture of who you can be and ask Him to help you become that person.

Choose to speak kindly because you want to be kind. Chose a level of household responsibility that you can handle because you want a home that is relatively clean and hospitable. Chose what you can reasonably do. When you need help, ask for it (because that’s what reasonable people do). If he says no, then it goes undone for awhile.

I think also it’s important to speak the truth from time to time (he needs to know that his behavior is still hurting you). If you do it frequently, it becomes a nag, but not saying anything at all tends to communicate everything’s OK, when it’s not.

Realize that as you become more gracious and generous, his behavior becomes pretty bad by comparison. He may try to make it more difficult for you so that you will let off again. Let him fuss. Be the person you choose to be and let his behavior look like what it is.

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libl June 5, 2014 at 3:03 pm

Lori,

Thank you! I am going to write that down on my special board of inspiration in my kitchen: be the person you choose to be.

Your reply to me is a balm.

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