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Knowing Our Spouse

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One of the great gifts God has tucked into the aspect of “becoming one flesh” in marriage is the opportunity to be known.

“I need an hour of your time tomorrow,” my husband said with a smile. He had just returned from exploring some new sections of a mountainside creek near our home. Intrigued, and excited by the prospect of an hour together sans kids, I agreed.

The next day, we hopped in the car for our little mystery adventure. After a short drive, he led us to a trail I had never seen before. Since my husband is a landscape photographer, I assumed he was probably taking me to some new grand vista, or maybe a roaring waterfall he had found (he loves waterfalls). Instead, we followed the twists and turns of a brisk, bubbling creek, scrambled over boulders and ducked under low branches until we arrived at a hidden hillside bursting with tiny, perfectly ripe wild strawberries.

Tears stung the corners of my eyes. I love strawberries … but that’s not what got to me. I was grinning ear to ear because my husband braved muggy heat and mosquitoes to make my soul smile. My heart melted because he knew this simple adventure would be my favorite “date.”

I stared first at the strawberry patch, then at my husband, and then back at the strawberries. At that moment, I was struck by a powerful thought: My husband knows me. Ephesians 5:31-33 came to mind:

“‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’ This is a profound mystery — but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself.”

One of the great gifts God has tucked into the aspect of “becoming one flesh” in marriage is the opportunity to be known. God knows us intimately and wants to be known in return. And He has designed marriage to tangibly display this kind of intimate relationship for the world to see. So how can we foster that kind of knowing with our spouse?

  • Be a student. We are all works in progress, growing and changing as we age, mature and experience life’s ups and downs. If we want to know our spouse, it will take an ongoing commitment to study him or her through every life stage.
  • Champion your spouse’s interests. Philippians 2:4 says that we should look out for others’ interests, not just our own. We show that we know our spouse when we can anticipate what they’d prefer and then make the choice to sacrifice our own desires or preferences for them.
  • Focus on the good. Knowing our spouse means we’ll also become acquainted with their shortcomings. Focusing on their strengths and accomplishments, and being patient with the rest, is a tremendous gift to our spouse. A gift we’d love to receive in return!

Think about your marriage. How has your spouse changed in the past five years? Think of one of your spouse’s strengths you can recognize and show appreciation for today.

As the sun sank low behind the western hills, we picked the strawberries, and then laughed and ate until our fingers were sticky and the patch was bare. That night I reveled in the deep, satisfying gift of being known and pondered how to return the favor.

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Your Teen Needs You Most of All

No parent of teens is perfect and even the best can learn how to better connect with their son or daughter. Get practical action steps to better connect with your teenager in 8 Essential Tips for Parenting Your Teen in this FREE video series!

There Is Still Hope for Your Marriage

You may feel that there is no hope for your marriage and the hurt is too deep to restore the relationship and love that you once had. The truth is, your life and marriage can be better and stronger than it was before. In fact, thousands of marriages, situations as complex and painful as yours, have been transformed with the help of professionals who understand where you are right now and care deeply about you and your spouse’s future. You can restore and rebuild your marriage through a personalized, faith-based, intimate program called, Hope Restored.

There Is Still Hope for Your Marriage

You may feel that there is no hope for your marriage and the hurt is too deep to restore the relationship and love that you once had. The truth is, your life and marriage can be better and stronger than it was before. In fact, thousands of marriages, situations as complex and painful as yours, have been transformed with the help of professionals who understand where you are right now and care deeply about you and your spouse’s future. You can restore and rebuild your marriage through a personalized, faith-based, intimate program called, Hope Restored.

There Is Still Hope for Your Marriage

You may feel that there is no hope for your marriage and the hurt is too deep to restore the relationship and love that you once had. The truth is, your life and marriage can be better and stronger than it was before. In fact, thousands of marriages, situations as complex and painful as yours, have been transformed with the help of professionals who understand where you are right now and care deeply about you and your spouse’s future. You can restore and rebuild your marriage through a personalized, faith-based, intimate program called, Hope Restored.
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Understand How to Respect and Love your Son Well

Why doesn’t my son listen to me? Have you ever asked that question? The truth is, how you see your son and talk to him has a significant effect on how he thinks and acts. That’s why we want to help you. In fact, we’ve created a free five-part video series called “Recognizing Your Son’s Need for Respect” that will help you understand how showing respect, rather than shaming and badgering, will serve to motivate and guide your son.

Reconnected: The Digital Experience

Is the love there, but not the spark? Reawaken fun in your marriage and move from roommates to soulmates again with the help of this 7-part online video experience. Learn how to connect emotionally and spiritually as husband and wife using techniques such as dreaming together and establishing deep, heartfelt communication. The Digital Experience includes 7 teaching videos, an online study guide and access to additional tools and resources to help spouses reconnect.

Next Steps: Marriage Assessment

We want your marriage to be thriving and healthy. Take the free Marriage Assessment from Focus on the Family to learn how to strengthen your bond with your spouse and get the tools to help you need to grow closer together. 

Next Steps: Fruit of the Spirit Devotionals for Couples

The Fruit of the Spirit Devotional is a free series of nine short videos to get you into God’s Word and inspire you to seek the Holy Spirit’s help in loving your spouse.

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