It Will Be Fine!


Encouragement is critically important in marriage. Encourage your spouse by easing his or her stress.

But exhort one another daily, while it is called "Today," lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. Hebrews 3:13

David and I recently finished remodeling our home. There are a million decisions to make when you are remodeling, and none of them seems very easy. And if you are perfectionistic like I can be, each decision has to be absolutely right.

On more than a few occasions something wasn't done quite to my liking, and I found myself getting upset. You know, kind of a "this is the end of the world" reaction to something like a light fixture not being hung perfectly. Dozens of times David said, "It will be fine" when I was in one of those over-reactive moods. Those words were just what the doctor ordered, and I often found myself handling my feelings better because of his encouragement.

Such experiences give insight into why our marriage partners are often so different from us. Intense versus laid-back, reflective versus social, thinker versus doer, wait versus react—the list of differences seems endless, and we often miss their purposes.

Could it be that some of my spouse's differences are intended to be encouragements to me when I become extreme in my emotions? More than once, David's laid-back nature has tempered my extreme perfectionism. His tendencies to wait, reflect, and think have encouraged me at times when I was prepared to "Ready! Aim! Fire!" Because of that, I've grown and matured in curbing my inclination to react first and pick up the pieces later.

I appreciate David's calming influence when I am feeling troubled or upset. It means a lot to me to have his perspective and soothing words during those emotional storms I sometimes create. Those storms often calm because of what he does to help, and I am able to see things more clearly.

Encouragement—what a critically important need in marriage! Offer some to your spouse today.

In what ways can you encourage your spouse by easing his or her stress?

God help me be encouraging to my spouse, especially when times are stressful.

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