In my weekly hunt to find marriage teachings and encouragements I can present to our marriage class, I came across this absolute gem that has the power to transform any marriage. It comes from Gary Thomas and the website Homeward.
Gary has a new book entitled “Cherish: The One Word That Changes Everything for your Marriage”. While working on the book, Gary interviewed a woman who told him about an amazing marital “exercise” she put into practice. She spent an entire year working on her husband’s Christmas present. She kept a journal that recorded something she was thankful for about her husband that particular day. These were very specific, day-by-day accounts of what the husband did and why she was thankful to be married to him: things like, putting up the Christmas lights when it was very cold, coming home and playing with the kids after a long business trip even though he was obviously tired, that kind of thing.
When she gave her husband the journal he immediately sat down and read it in one sitting. Later, when recounting this gift to a friend, he told him, “Reading that journal makes me aspire to be the man she thinks I am.”
So, you’d think that the real winner here is the recipient of the journal. But, if take a closer look, you might think differently. See, Gary tried this little marital “exercise” himself, taking a few minutes each day to write down something positive about his wife for which he was thankful.
Gary says that because he had to find something new to write about every day, he had to watch his wife throughout the day, trying to “catch” her doing something wonderful, or making sure he remembered something positive that she said. So, he was always on the lookout for the best, her most excellent qualities and characteristics. If he saw something displeasing, it wasn’t relevant to me, so he’d forget it and keep looking for the good.
He says it changed the way he thought about, looked at, acted toward, and spoke about his wife. He says it was an early gift to his wife because it changed the way he treated her, appreciated her, and spoke to and about her. And it was a gift to him to be reminded and filled with such gratitude that he’s blessed to be married to a woman who gives him something new to praise every day.
As you might remember from THIS post of mine, there is so much good to see in others, in circumstances, in everything, IF we just take the time to look for it. And if you take the few minutes to write down, every day, the positives you can find in your spouse, you just may take your marriage to the next level. Try it!!