Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The Love Dare - Day Twelve

Love Lets the Other Win

If you were asked to name three areas where you and your spouse disagree, you’d likely be able to do it without thinking very hard.  You might even be able to produce a top ten list if given a few more minutes.  And sadly, unless someone at your house starts doing some giving in, these same issues are going to keep popping up between you and your mate.

Unfortunately, stubbornness comes as standard feature on both husband and wife models.  Defending your rights and opinions is a foundational part of your nature and make-up.  It’s detrimental, though, inside a marriage relationship.  It can also cause great frustration for both of you.

Granted, being stubborn is not always bad.  Some things are worth standing up for and protecting. But too often we debate over piddling things, like the color of wall paint or the choice of restaurants.  Though these issues may not crop up every day, they keep resurfacing and don’t really go away.  You never seem to get any closer to a resolution or compromise.  The heels just keep digging in.  It’s like driving with parking brake on.

There’s only one way to get beyond stalemates like these, and that’s by finding a word that’s the opposite of stubbornness  That word is “willing.”  It’s an attitude and spirit of cooperation that should permeate our conversations.  It’s like a palm tree by the ocean that endures the greatest winds because it knows how to gracefully bend.

The wise and loving thing to do is to start approaching your disagreements with a willingness to not always insist on your own way.  That’s not to say your mate is necessarily right or being wise about a matter, but you are choosing to give strong consideration to their preference as a way of valuing them. Though the follow-through may cost you some pride and discomfort, you have made a loving, lasting investment in your marriage.

No, you won’t always see eye-to-eye.  You’re not supposed to be carbon copies of each other.  If you were, one of you would be unnecessary.  Two people who always share the same opinions and perspectives won’t have any balance or flavor to enhance the relationship.  Rather, your differences are for listening to and learning from.

Today’s Dare

Demonstrate love by willingly choosing to give in to an area of disagreement between you and your spouse.  Tell them you are putting their preference first.

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