Monday, October 12, 2015

One Important Thing

If you could choose one attribute in your spouse or significant other as being the most important, what would it be? I've been married for over 30 yrs and lately I've been doing a lot of thinking about this very subject. It's probably because our one and only daughter is going to be married on Dec. 19th. 

Today her father, who is also her pastor, met with her and Isaac, her fiancé for some premarital counselling. They each had a ten page questionnaire to answer and then my husband compared their answers and they discussed each subject area. There were many questions and as parents we were happy that they had the same point of view on them all.

While they were completing their questionnaires I kept thinking about the qualities that are the most important to me and I guess I would have to say that it would be kindness. Kindness is something that is sadly lacking in our world today and as a pastor who has had the opportunity on many occasions to sit with and council troubled couples, it is one of the most often neglected qualities in many relationships. 

Just imagine how different the world would be if we all showed kindness every day. Imagine how different relationships and marriages would be. Just a little kindness, that's all it takes. But it seems like something from long ago. Something from a simpler time when men still tipped their hat if a lady walked by or quickly rose to offer their seat. A time when people went out of their way to help a stranger in need. 

Many couples fall into the habit of speaking roughly to each other. Disrespect is rampant in their home and the words 'cherish', 'honor' and 'love' from their wedding vows are long forgotten. They've forgotten kindness. Kindness is treating others with respect, treating them like you'd like to be treated or better yet, how you'd treat an important stranger who came to visit. 

God expects us to be kind. Ephesians 4:32 tells us to 'be kind to one another'. It goes on to say that we are to forgive one another. Many times it is the most hateful, unkind person who is actually the most hurt person on the inside. They hold on to a hurt and it changes them into someone who is angry and bitter instead of offering forgiveness and kindness to that person who has hurt them. 

When we get married we have stars in our eyes and we can't imagine a time when the light of those stars would ever go out, but sometimes it can. Maybe the passion of young love fades and when it does what will you be left with? Hopefully you'll have built a relationship on things like love and kindness. 

I am so thankful that our daughter is marrying a kind man. I believe that quality will stand them in good stead and will be an important building block in their marriage. We all could practice being a little kinder every day especially towards our family but even outside of our homes. We need to be kind to everyone we meet and by doing so we will be showing the love of God to a hurting world.

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