Transform Your Thinking, Day 30
Tomorrow is the last official day of the 30 Dates in November Challenge! Congratulations for making it through the month of intentionally loving your husband and growing in your relationship with God. I don’t know about you, but this month has been intense. I’ve seen a lot of growth happen, and a lot of growth that still needs to happen in my marriage. I’ve been incredibly blessed to write for all of you. Thank you for embarking on this journey with me.
Today’s 30 Minute Challenge (Nov 30th): Transform Your Thinking
Guard your thoughts and words. Philippians 4:8 says to think about things that are… Pick 1-2 of these to work on today.
True – What do you truly love about your husband? Tell your husband one true thing you love about him today.
Noble – Do you exalt your husband in your thoughts and words? Pick one of the following things to do today. Karen Scalf Linamen, author of Pillow Talk, shares 7 ways to exalt your husband:
- Treat your husband at least as well as you treat your friends and colleagues. Treat your husband with the respect and dignity you give your friends, co-workers, acquaintances, and even strangers. “Do to others as you would have them do to you.” Luke 6:31
- Let your tone do the talking. You may be saying “yes” to sex with your husband but your tone is saying “argh! not again!” or “let’s get this over with,” and you might as well be screaming, “NO!” Use a loving tone and communicate respectfully, even if to speak unpleasant words. “Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.” Proverbs 16:24
- Watch your body language. Communicate love and respect to your husband through gentle touch. I often hold Adam’s hand when talking about something I’m upset about so he knows that I still love him. When I start to get frustrated, sometimes I just give him a hug. Offer him the gift of touch. “Let his left hand be under my head and his right hand embrace me.” Song of Solomon 2:6
- A little appreciation goes a long way. Express appreciation even in the little things. There have been many times my husband is stressed out when he comes home from work, and I show him I appreciate him by giving him a massage, offering to do something he enjoys, or reminding him that he’ s loved, and this has made all the difference in his mood. “Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs him down, but a kind word makes him glad.” Proverbs 12:25
- Admire his manly features. Gaze upon the love of your life. Tell him what you like about his body. Affirm the traits that set your husband apart as a man. Meditate on his body when he’s not around. “How handsome you are, my beloved!” Song of Solomon 1:16
- Don’t be funny at your husband’s expense. We live in a world where husbands are often the butt of dumb jokes. Just watch a sit-com for five minutes and you’ll probably hear some comment about a lazy, incompetent, bumbling husband. But this is not what God has called us to do. Your husband’s heart is precious. Don’t wound your husband by using destructive humor. “Set a guard over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips.” Psalm 141:3
- Perspective can make the man. Karen writes, “effective exaltation isn’t rooted in the things you say [but] in your overall attitude.” Look at your husband through the lens of Christ. “The God who created your husband knows that you are married to a creation of inestimable worth and value, ripe with potential, a melting pot of skills, gifts, and abilities,” she writes. Love your husband by practicing an attitude of respect. “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.” 1 John 4:7
Right – Micah 6:8 says, The Lord “has shown you what is good [right] and what does the Lord require of you? To act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.” Think about a way to exercise fairness, mercy, and humility in your marriage today.
Pure – As I shared on Day 24, Impure thoughts hinder your prayers, make you unclean, and lead you to destructive behavior. That’s why you have to ask God to daily search and purify your mind and heart. Pray Psalm 139:13-14 for your marriage today.
Lovely – In Psalm 84:1, David writes, “How lovely is Your dwelling place, Lord, Almighty.” Invite Jesus into Your presence and focus on His lovely heart today. If you haven’t been doing Day 1’s Take it a Step Further challenge, start today. Read through the Gospels and get to know the heart of Jesus. Look at how Jesus interacts with people. Start with the calling of the first disciples and healing the leper, the Samaritan woman at the well, the bleeding woman & the dead girl, or the woman who anoints Jesus.
Respectful – Disrespect starts in your thoughts. You may be thinking, “Well that was a dumb thing to do so I must punish him,” or “I deserve better.” Wrong. It is not your place to punish him when he’s hurt your feelings or made you angry. It is not a matter of what you deserve but a matter of what he deserves – your respect and submission. Devote yourself to prayer about your thought life. “Commit your works to the Lord, and your thoughts will be established.” Proverbs 16:3.
5 Minute Marathon
Write out today’s Bible verse – Philippians 4:8 – and pray the verse for your marriage.
Lord, I lift up my eyes to You for help. It’s so easy to think negatively about things in my marriage when they aren’t going my way. Forgive me. Lord, transform my mind. I want to think true thoughts about my husband. Bathe our marriage in truth. I want to think noble thoughts. Help me to exalt my husband in my thoughts, words, and actions. I want to think right thoughts. Help me to exercise fairness, mercy, and humility in my marriage. I want to think pure thoughts. Purify my heart and mind and cleanse me from all unrighteousness. I want to think lovely thoughts. I invite Your presence here, Lord. Help me to dwell on You. Help me to to love my husband like You love me. I want to think respectful thoughts. Help me to respect my husband even in my mind. May my thoughts be pleasing and honoring to You. In Your Name, Amen.
Take it a Step Further
Keep a thoughts journal for the next month. Write down one thing you are thankful for about your husband every day. Journal your thoughts. Keep track of the things you tend to dwell upon – good and bad. Pay attention to your emotions toward your husband. Write down your prayer requests and include answers to those prayers when you see them. Write down your reasons to praise God. At the end of the month of December or in early January, use your thoughts journal to write down praises and prayers for the new year, and to make resolutions – things you want to see changed in 2014 in your thought life, emotions, marriage, or relationship with God.
Share with Us
How do you guard your thoughts? Share one good thing about your husband today.
Today is Day 30 of the 30 Dates in November Challenge. This post included revised parts from Respecting the Marriage Bed, Part 2. See related posts – Guard Your Mind, Extending Kindness in the Bedroom, Do I Delight in Evil?, Think on Things of God, and Put Sin to Death, Part 1.