Kate says . . .
When I say the word “initiate” what do you think ?
When wives hear the word initiate, sex is one of the top things that comes to mind, understandably so. And yet, there are so many other ways that we can initiate in our marriage. I believe stepping up and being the initiator in your marriage will not only change your marriage for the good, but it will also bless your hubby like crazy.
Ask and Listen
When your hubby gets home from work, initiate asking him about his day. Regardless of what your hubby does for a living, much of his identity is wrapped up in work and providing for the family. It is a God thing, and even though we may struggle to relate, because God wired us very differently, we can choose to believe God designed our husband that way, for His good purposes. So when your hubby comes home, give him a hug and a kiss and ask him what happened in his day. Make sure you are being an active listener and ask more questions when you can. It is also nice to thank your hubby for all that he does for the family, these conversations give great opportunities to do just that.
Take 15 minutes
I know I can see it on Brad’s face when he could use a few minutes to himself. Perhaps it is to recharge, to calm down, to take a power nap or just to relax for a bit. Be the initiator in inviting your hubby to take that time when you see that he needs it. And sometimes initiate him taking that time just because it would bless him. I know that I used to always think about how I needed 15 minutes to myself and how hard I worked and how tired I was. That selfishness used to stew in me to the point where it would want to boil over. Through God’s refining, I started to look at what Brad needed and see how I could be attentive to that, instead of being stuck in my own selfishness. You know what happened when I initiated and encouraged Brad to take 15 minutes for himself? He started looking for opportunities to do the same for me! Amazing how that God given principle works,that when we put the other before us, they will reciprocate.
Never-ever underestimate the power of touch
Studies have shown in babies and children, that if we omit touch, there are many ramifications emotionally and relationally. Even if touch is not high on either of your love language scales, be an initiator of touch. You know all the stuff you NEVER wanted to stop doing while dating/engaged. Be intentional about touching your hubby. During meals, while taking a walk with your family (that’s right, hold your hubby’s hand first, then your kids), driving in the car, in bed, sitting in church and on dates! I am always amazed at how many spouses are out and about together and don’t touch-at all! Be the initiator of touch in your marriage.
Initiate making love together
As always it made the list! It is pretty simple . . . if both spouses took initiative in initiating sex, we would still have hurdles, but it would be very different. Even aside from that, if we as wives step up and initiate and are intentional about making sex a priority in our marriage, we are acknowledging God’s design for sex in marriage. Not only should we initiate sex, we should be initiating communicating with our hubby where sex is concerned. I know these are often hard things, but often times hard things are worth it-as is the case with marriage and intimacy. You are the wife and you can only do your part, don’t concern yourself with his part-that is not yours to worry about!
How many times in our marriages will we ask for forgiveness? Many I am sure. But the more important question is, how many times should we have humbled ourselves in front of our husband and asked for forgiveness but held back? Often it is pride keeping us from doing so! Be the initiator of admitting your part and asking forgiveness-whether it was intentional or not. In the same way, be the initiator in extending grace and forgiveness to your husband. It WILL make a difference!
It is so stinkin easy to sit and wait for our hubby to be the initiator. Then it can be a stubborn thing. Cast those things aside and be the initiator in your marriage. Do it with humility and the intent to love your husband above yourself and your own needs. It is radical and goes against all that our sinful nature seeks, but it is the way Jesus loved. He was an initiator!
How have you seen the principle of initiating in your marriage change and grow your relationship? What would you add to my list?
Photo courtesy of Ned White and © photoxpress