We know that our spouses need love and respect and we know that our marriages need commitment and attention. But we rarely stop to think about how our spouses long to know that we delight in them!
Delight is an essential part of a healthy marriage, but we often fail to express it. When the gift of delight is missing, husbands and wives can sometimes feel like these situations:
Mark knows that his wife is committed to him, but he doesn’t feel that she really enjoys being with him. Most of the time, he suspects that she is merely tolerating him. He is thankful for his marriage, but he often feels lonely. He is troubled by the thought that he is inadequate to make his wife happy.
Karen appreciates her husband’s commitment, but she fears that she can’t keep his interest. She often feels unknown and unvalued. At one time, she had hoped that her husband would see her as fascinating, but now she worries that he doesn’t see her at all.
What would happen if Mark’s wife began to show him that she enjoys his company? And if Karen could see that her husband delighted in her, wouldn’t that change everything?
We tend to think that our delight is our spouses’ responsibility. We sit around and wait for them to delight us. Perhaps we feel sorry for ourselves as we criticize them for not delighting us. But we have a far better option:
We can CHOOSE to delight in our spouses. If we will determine to enjoy our spouses, we will be giving the best gift ever!
Your husband wants you to enjoy being with him. Delight in the man that God created your husband to be. Take pleasure in his unique personality, his own perspectives, and his individual set of strengths. Your wife wants you to enjoy her simply being who she really is. Delight in the woman that God created your wife to be. Take pleasure in her unique personality, her own perspectives, and her individual set of strengths.
When you make a deliberate choice to delight in your spouse, you are giving a gift that both of you will enjoy. It will strengthen your friendship. It can transform your marriage.
God sets the example for us. He gives His bride the generous gifts of love, forgiveness, and commitment; but He does even more than that. He also gives us this amazing gift:
God delights in us.
God enjoys our friendship! He takes pleasure in us as His people in covenant with Him. It is a marvelous gift to know that God is not merely tolerating us. He actually delights in us. When we realize that, our relationship with God becomes deeper and richer.
Your God “will rejoice over you with gladness…. He will delight in you with shouts of joy.” (Zephaniah 3:17)
The LORD “takes pleasure in His people.” (Psalm 149:4)
If God delights in us, shouldn’t we delight in our spouses?
Not only does God delight in us, but He longs for us to delight in Him (Psalm 37:4). We will not have an intimate relationship with God if we do not delight in Him. In fact, we cannot fully worship God until we truly delight in Him.
In a similar way, our marriages will be hindered until we choose to delight in our spouses. When we decide to enjoy our spouses, our delight becomes a fantastic gift, not only to our spouses but also to ourselves and to our homes.