Ways to Show Thankfulness to Your Spouse
I shared in my devotional post about being thankful, that I love the definition. To be conscious of benefit received.
As Christians we are told to thank God in all situations. I feel like this definition brings greater awareness to why we are supposed to thank God. Think of all the benefit we have received from Him!
When we view our world through the lens of a thankful heart we are more focused on our abundant blessings and God’s love that has been poured onto us.
Today I want to look at the same definition pertaining to our spouses.
Because too often I meet with married couples who are proficient at describing all of their spouse’s flaws. They can rattle off item after item as if they have practiced the list. Because they have. Whether they realize it or not, they have come to focus on the ‘wrongs’ of their spouse.
It can be easy to do when we lose sight of how we are supposed to love.
To be conscious of benefit received because of your spouse.
Thankfulness, gratitude and appreciation can go a long way with your spouse. It helps them to feel loved. And often they will do more of the thing you state you are thankful for.
Behaviorists will call this process classical conditioning.
In teaching social skills this is part of reciprocity.
As a Christian, I may be biased, but I prefer Jesus’ explanation. Luke 6:31 (NIV) Do to others as you would have them do to you.
Focusing on and showing gratitude towards your spouse also alters how you view them. When we set a positive intention towards something – our job, ourselves, our life circumstance, our spouse, etc. be begin seeing the positive aspects of that thing/person more readily. The result then is more positive thoughts, emotions, and behaviors towards the thing/person.
So first before you can show thankfulness to your spouse you have to know what you are thankful for!
Think about all aspects of your spouse and come up with at least one positive for each area. Definitely don’t stop at one if you can think of others but don’t skip over a category.
I’ve worked with lots of couples who have struggled and shed tears about this assignment. This may not be a task you can just sit down and bust out. Past hurts can cloud all positives so take your time.
If you are struggling in any area ask God to show you how He sees your spouse.
- Moral Character
- Spiritual Development
- Work Ethic
There may very well be other categories you can think of for your spouse. Feel free to add more but these will get you started.
Ways to show thankfulness to you spouse
Above were fourteen items so that’s two weeks worth of material for you use! So each day for two weeks pick one category and thank your spouse of one of the items you have listed.
Don’t just say, “I’m thankful you are a good…”
That might be okay for a day or two but two weeks of that and your spouse is going to feel like you are just completing a homework assignment. And there won’t be much movement in your heart or mind either.
Take time to think how you can creatively show your spouse you are thankful for them!
Here are some examples:
- Find a way to highlight the personality characteristic you enjoy. How has it been helpful, important, enduring, etc.
- Tell your spouse how their moral character has influenced and bettered you. Be specific.
- Get them a book or item in the area they enjoy learning about or are interested in.
- Thank your spouse for being your rock or for being willing to be vulnerable and letting you in. You can be as cheesy or as sentimental as you want.
- Find a bible verse that you think describes your spouse or you think they do well. Write out the verse or have it made on an item and give it to your spouse. Explain why you thought it fit them.
- This one should be pretty easy to share. Tell your spouse and even show them what you physically like about them.
- You may have to step out of your comfort zone with this one if you aren’t much of a verbal person pertaining to sex. But let your spouse know what you are thankful for in how they make love to you. Better yet, ask them to show you again.
- Thank your spouse for not being like other husbands/wives. Don’t turn it into a gossip session but highlight how/why you believe your spouse is different and why you appreciate it.
- You can even recruit the kids to help you with this one. Come up with a project for the kids to help you with so show how your spouse is a good parent.
- After your spouse gets off the phone with their parents or after you have visited them, tell your spouse what you admire about his/her interaction with his parents.
- Share with your spouse they ways they are a great friend to you or how you admire his friendships with others.
- Tell your spouse what about their communication style you like. (Do not take this time to tell them ways they could improve!)
- Let your spouse know the ways you feel he/she provides for the family and how beneficial it is to the family.
- Make a “get out of work” coupon thanking your spouse for how hard he/she works, in general, or on a specific task.
If you put in the effort, after two weeks you will hopefully notice a difference in how you view your spouse as well as how he/she interacts with you. Even if it’s a small difference. Celebrate small steps, too!
I pray that this post has been beneficial for you and reminded you to be conscious of your benefit received by having your spouse in your life!
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