“One gives freely, yet grows all the richer;
another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want.
Whoever brings blessing will be enriched,
and one who waters will himself be watered.”
– Proverbs 11:24-25
What a wonderful picture of a godly marriage.
The spouse who gives freely, not clinging to their rights, their preferences, but loves wholeheartedly in an unselfish way will in turn receive great riches. This isn’t a promise as much as it is a principle by which to live.
Think about the last time your spouse did something completely unexpected and thoughtful for you – to bless you or make your life a little easier. How did you feel? Didn’t it make your love and affection for them increase? It should have. Unless, of course, there are unresolved resentments, which taint even the best made efforts, but that’s another post.
This is the way Christ has loved us.
He surprises us with help right when we need it most. He gave His very life in order that we might have life in return. As we give our lives away to our spouse, not only do they receive the blessing, but we receive even more!
How do we water our marriages? As we drink from the Word of God and apply it to our lives, it affects the words we speak and the actions we take. It is as if we are watering the soil of our marriage. From a well-watered garden springs life and fruit. If water is cut off and no nutrients are given to the soil, the harvest will suffer for it. But if we do as these verses say and “give…bless…and water” our marriages can’t help but be affected for good. More than this these verses say we’ll “grow all the richer….and be enriched.”
On our flight home from California Tuesday, we were tired and ready to be home. We had delays and unexpected changes, which made the travel time not so enjoyable. But Tom did a couple of things to help me and to show his love and care. He surprised me with my favorite candy bar – a new version made with DARK chocolate, which he knew I’d love.
These two gestures on Tom’s part were small. It would be easy for me to overlook these kindnesses, but I’m learning to notice these moments and more importantly to express my gratefulness for them. It’s in the little, everyday moments that healthy marriages grow stronger and more intimate, but we have to be watching for them. Let’s purpose to catch our spouse doing something right. Give them praise and commend them often, instead of withholding our praise or worse – belittling and nagging them. Those who withhold, the Bible says, “will only suffer want.” Now this is certainly something no one wants to experience in marriage. But even if we ARE experiencing want – the answer is simple…start watering your marriage with praise and give of yourself unselfishly and watch the want turn to blessing and riches.
In what small ways has your spouse blessed you recently? What can you do today to make your spouse’s life a little better?
This is post #21 in The Ultimate Blog Challenge to post everyday in July.