Ephesians 5:10 says, "Figure out what will please Christ, and then do it." How does one live intentionally? How does one live with discipline?
My friend Monica over at The Homespun Heart is facing the same issues and topics and is faced with life changing decisions.
For me, learning to put my spouse ahead of myself hasn't come naturally. This is something that has taken time, guidance, and a pure commitment to my marriage.
Recently I read the following by Dr. Randy Carlson:
...You are to make the marriage - and your spouse - more important than yourself and your perceived needs. Get behind the eyes of your husband or wife. See life like they do. Sacrifice yourself for the benefit of the marriage. Ask your spouse, "What are some things you need from me than I am currently not providing for you?"
Well then, where do I go from here? How do I keep my priorities straight at work while keeping my marriage first? How do make time for my husband's needs while ensuring a tidy home and dinner on the table? Where do the kiddos fit into all of this? There must be a healthy balance, but what needs to happen today and what do I want to happen today. Big difference between the two.
Ah ha! This week I figured it out. It involves taking the first step- action.
We judge others by their actions while we judge ourselves by our intentions.
My hubby's needs can't be met without action. Surely he doesn't feel fulfilled by me making a list of to-dos yet not doing them.
Wednesday I called my hubby at work. "Can you meet me for an early dinner, before we need to pick up the kiddos?" He must have thought I was crazy, maybe pregnant, maybe I lost my job, or maybe I was doubting our relationship. The truth is, I needed him to see action, to spend time together to rekindle our friendship, I needed to take care of his needs by sharing my time. The time I could have spent carting laundry from room to room or picking up the family room or even organizing my coupons. No, he needed my attention. I will continue to hold on to the smile he gave as I pulled up for our just because early dinner.
Finding time for everything is going to take discipline. I looked up the word discipline and found the verb definition to be the best fit: to bring to a state of order and obedience by training and control; training expected to produce a specific character or pattern of behavior, especially training that produces moral or mental improvement; a state of order based on submission to rules and authority.
So let me get this straight... I must submit to rules and authority, train myself to get into the grove of producing a specific behavior, and discipline will bring a state of order and obedience through this training and self control. WOW! While this is a toughy, I think it's all coming together now.
I'll need to put action behind these findings. Without action, I can't even begin to judge success.