Filling your spouse’s “love account”
So much of what married couples harbor against each other is stuffed internally. Later, when you don’t feel heard or validated by your spouse, it’s easy to throw those harbored offenses at each other in your nagging or fighting. But healing comes from a place of understanding and affirmation. When you allow your spouse the freedom to communicate what has pained him or her—and you validate that pain without becoming defensive or saying your spouse is wrong to feel it—you will be amazed at how quickly healing and forgiveness can come.
When you simultaneously implement all four of the above recommendations, you can see and experience healing in your marriage. Doing these things allows you to make more deposits than withdrawals to your spouse’s “love account.” Too many spouses “overdraw” their accounts. Men, in particular, have the propensity to come home after work and look for what their wife can do for them—making dinner, cleaning the house, caring for the children—even if their wife is working full time outside the home, too. Men far too often want to know what their wife can do to meet their needs each day rather than looking at what they can do to meet their wife’s needs. As a result, they make frequent withdrawals from their wife’s love account, and the account runs empty.
Both spouses need to put more into their relationship than they take out of it. When you wake up in the morning, and as you go about your day, ask yourself what you can do to make a deposit in your spouse’s love account. It doesn’t have to be huge, but it does need to be consistent. Life has a way of dictating the withdrawals—they’ll come whether you seek them out or not. So look for ways to make deposits. Otherwise, when forgiveness needs to be given, you will lack the emotional depth and relational harmony for it to be granted easily.
Taken from Kingdom Marriage, a Focus on the Family book published by Tyndale House Publishers. Copyright © 2016 by Tony Evans. Used by permission. All rights reserved.