Previously we spoke about your relationship being like a plant that needs water every day to flourish and stay green and beautiful. Let’s expand upon that.
Let’s pretend that you and your spouse are like “people plants”. You’re both standing in large pots with beautiful dark soil and you look like leafy green ivy growing strong and tall. Each of you has a large watering can with a spout and your pots are close enough that you can reach over and water your spouse’s soil. Now let’s further imagine that your watering can has the exact additives that your spouse’s plant needs to flourish, including the nitrogen, and the perfect dash of phosphate, potash, zinc and iron. In other words, you have the perfect mixture of ingredients uniquely blended and balanced to make your spouse grow beautiful and strong and green. The best looking spouse plant on the whole block.
What happens when we withhold water from a plant? It begins to turn brown and the leaves begin to fall. It becomes limp and weak. Withholding nutrients will eventually cause the plant to die. And remember this: When you properly provide nutrients to your spouse, they then have the strength to be able to give back to you the nutrients that you need. It’s a cycle – water them and they are strong enough to water you.
I believe that God wants each of us to have a watering pot uniquely blended with the exact nutrients and ingredients to enable our spouse to flourish, grow, and blossom. We need to take seriously our responsibility to figure out what those unique things are that our spouse needs. For example, the book The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts by Gary Chapman talks about how each of us has a special love language. We can express and receive love through quality time, words of affirmation, gifts, acts of service, or physical touch. When you know which of these five love languages your spouse prefers, you can begin to express your love for them in their unique language.
Seek to understand your spouse. Know what their particular needs are and what fills them with joy. Does she prefer a red rose or help with the dishes? Does he prefer to chat about his day when he comes home from work, or does he appreciate 15 – 20 minutes of quiet time to unwind? How do you know? You can know because you can ask. Agree with your spouse to take a few minutes and write down ten things that your spouse could do on a daily or weekly basis that would make you feel really special. “I really appreciate it when you_________. It makes me feel so loved by you”. Discuss the lists with each other and really listen to your spouse. You could also read The 5 Love Languages book together. Work at it every day. What can I do to bless you today? After all, I love it when you get all green and leafy!!!