I heard a radio program the other day on a researcher who had questioned thousands of couples about happiness. And she said, that without a doubt the number one thing the happiest couples had in common was that they believed the best about each other. The happiest couples believed that their spouses loved them and wanted what was best for them all of the time. They believed that their spouse was for them not themselves.
What would that be like? What if I looked at the actions of my family and my community through a lens of love and not of self?
The other day my husband was in charge of after dinner clean up and he didn’t do a thing. Nothing. Nada. Zip. Food left out, dishes with food cemented onto them, a stench in the house...all things I woke up to the next morning.
I felt unappreciated, disrespected, unseen, and unloved. I began my usual routine of letting my anger embitter me, making a list in my head of all the other ways my husband doesn’t see me, or appreciate me, or respect the things I do in our home. Then I remembered love.
I emailed my husband at work and asked about the kitchen...he was horrified he had forgotten. He was apologetic and humble. He loves me.
Is there a hurt right now that you are allowing to fester? Either from your family or community? Have you tried to look at their actions through the lens of love? Have you stopped to think for just one moment that maybe they were not out to hurt you, they may have forgotten something or been a little careless, but they didn’t intend bad for you.
I am committing to myself, and my husband, to begin looking at life through a lens of love. I will forgive faster, I will not doubt love, I will not let hurt feelings fester, and I will give grace as it has always been given to me.
The Message version of 1 Corinthians 13: 3-7 reads:
Love never gives up.
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.
Love doesn’t strut,
Doesn’t have a swelled head,
Doesn’t force itself on others,
Isn’t always “me first,”
Doesn’t fly off the handle,
Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn’t revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end."