By Sarah Lundgren
“We should remember that saying ‘I love you’ is only the beginning. We need to say it, we need to mean it, and most importantly we need consistently to show it.” ~David A. Bednar
A few years ago, my hubby and I had slipped into a bit of rut in our relationship. Our differing work schedules made us like two ships passing in the night, and somewhere along the line we let autopilot take the wheel.
The words “I love you” had started to sound more like a conversation filler rather than a genuine declaration of emotion, and it felt as though we were acting out of habit instead of intentionally choosing to love each other well. I was desperately aching for more, while still trying to be content with the abundant blessings I had in front of me. My husband was already sweet, kind, and doting. What more could I want? It felt wrong to want more, and yet my heart ached.
Then one day, I just broke, and through my tears I said to that sweet man of mine, “I know you love me, but I just don’t feel loved lately.”
We had an honest conversation that night, and we agreed things needed to change. It was a hard truth to realize we had both made the mistake of getting so comfortable in our relationship that we weren’t actively pursuing each other’s hearts. We knew it was time to stop, regroup, and seek our heavenly Father. With humbled hearts, we grabbed each other’s hands and prayed that God would teach us how to love each other more intentionally.
A few days later, I woke up to find a new notebook on my nightstand with a little love note written on the first page. As I read his message, I could see my husband’s love in action, and I realized he had truly heard my heart’s cry. My heart exploded with unexpected joy, and I went through my day inspired to find ways to intentionally love him back. Every morning for the next week I woke up to find another love note written in the notebook. Two weeks, a month, six months, and now two years later, that sweet little notebook is almost full.
Those love notes are the first thing I read each morning, and they remind me of how deeply my husband and my God love me. However, that notebook did more than show me how much I am loved. It reminded me how transformational love can be when we partner with God and choose to love with humility and intention.
Not all of us will need daily love notes to make our marriages flourish, but we do all need to partner with God to love our spouses well. God is love. This makes him the absolute expert on the subject. When we seek him first, he can teach us how to love our spouses with pure hearts and purpose.
Lord, thank you so much for being our perfect example of true love. You are patient, kind, and never failing. Teach us how to speak love with a genuine heart and how to show love with humility and intention. May we also remember that you are the true source of the love we seek and the love we give. Amen.
Scriptures for Reflection
“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” (1 John 4:7-8)
“Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:12)
“Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the spirit through the bond of peace.” (Ephesians 4:2-3)
Reach for More
This week’s challenge is to intentionally love your significant other. If you’re not married or in a romantic relationship, prayerfully choose a family member or close friend to bless with intentional love. Start by seeking God and asking him to guide you, then find small tangible ways to share your heart. Does your love enjoy chocolate chip cookies? Surprise him and make a batch! Does he take his work to lunch? Sneak a little love note into his lunch bag before he leaves! Wherever God leads you, remember to love with humility and intention.
Dear friends, we can do this. Be courageous, and let’s be brave enough to partner with God and love with purpose!
Please, come back and leave a comment telling us about how God spoke to you this week, or share your progress on social media using the hashtag #tgtreachformore. We would love to hear from you.
Sarah Lundgren has a passion for all things sparkly, loves God with her whole heart, and is known to love Starbucks chai lattes a whole lot, too. Sarah is currently snuggled in the heart of Grand Rapids, Michigan with her sweet hubby, J, and her full-time job is making pretty things all day long for her Etsy business, so sarah designs, but she also loves writing devotional content here at The Glorious Table.