5 Ways to Love Your Spouse When Life Is Hard
1. Remind each other of the desire to come out stronger on the other side of the trial.
Trials can either make us or break us as individuals and they can also make or break our relationships. We must choose to encourage each other through a strength-building season.
2. Determine to forgive quickly and easily.
I know that some couples need to talk about every issue in detail. This is how they work through difficulties. And I get it. But ya’ll, at the Woj house, there is not enough time in the day to talk about every issue in detail. We often have to simply forgive one another and get over it. Period. When I’ve poured over the Bible and what Jesus said about forgiving, I could never find a clause that says something like “Forgive one another after you’ve received full explanation of the feelings involved.” Or “Forgive one another once all the trials have resolved.” No, the Word simply tells us “Forgive one another.” The quicker you forgive, the stronger you can live.
3. Accept the differences in your individual responses to sorrow and suffering.
People grieve at different times in different ways. We can’t control how we feel about issues, but we can control how we react to those feelings. However, we are all human. If your husband feels angry over unfair circumstances and you don’t, allow him time to process his feelings in place of condemning them. If your wife cries uncontrollably over what you feel is small in the bigger picture of the trial, give her the freedom to grieve in her own way. Recognize that you are two different people travelling a path together.
4. Remember to share both the burdens and the blessings.
I’ve found that one of the best ways to beat discouragement is to encourage someone else. Whenever I can find a glimmer of hope to be thankful for in the midst of our daughter’s terminal illness, I try to be purposeful to share it with my husband.
5. Spend time alone together whenever you can.
I wish I could give you an exact science to this statement. If only the perfect schedule for marriages existed, right? But we all know it doesn’t work that way. Whenever you possibly can, block out the distractions and connect with each other. Have dates. Drink coffee. Sit on the porch swing. Snuggle by the fire. Carve out time for each other between the necessary tasks of managing a difficult time in life. At times, it may be as simple as sharing a piece of chocolate over the kitchen sink or a brief kiss above the chaos.