We have discussed the importance of being intentional about investing time in your spouse. Of equal importance is attitude. An attitude of service and sacrifice—the "I'm Third" philosophy—is an indisputable marriage builder.
Jesus gave us a classic example of service when He washed His disciples’ feet and told them to do the same for one another. Is it time for some symbolic "foot washing" in your marriage? Try it!
Each of us has a heartfelt need to be honored and respected. All too often, however, we take our spouses for granted.
Your partner is a jack-of-all-trades who brings a host of skills to your marriage: provider, short-order cook, nurse, counselor, financial planner, gardener, arbiter of sibling disputes, spiritual leader, comforter, and much more. We encourage you to show your appreciation for these talents and services. Tell your wife how much you enjoy her cooking. Send your husband to work with a note praising him for his good judgment with the family budget. In front of guests, compliment her taste in home decor and his wise guidance of the children.
If we don't make our mate feel honored and respected, we may find our partner looking for recognition somewhere else.
Scripture is clear regarding this matter. The apostle Paul says, "Honor one another above yourselves" (Romans 12:10). There's no better place to apply this verse than in your home—with the husband or wife sitting next to you.
If you're the father in the home, I encourage you to remind your kids how hard their mother works and how wonderful she is. And if you're the mother, praise your husband's courage and principles in front of the children. Kids will quickly recognize and mirror the respect fathers and mothers give each other. Showing honor now will pay off for years to come.