This is going to be some journey as I attempt to follow the ‘rules’ and go through each of the forty days’ suggestions. I cannot, however, resist making a few comments.
I’ve skimmed through the book — but I’ve intentionally not read through the whole thing… so that I will approach each day with an open mind. I understand why the authors have chosen some of the headings or topics – as they follow 1Corinthians 13 in presenting some of the days challenges or “love dares.” I also want to point out a thought expressed in the introduction: “If you accept this dare, you must take the view that instead of following your heart, you are choosing to lead it. The world says follow your heart, but if you are not leading it, then someone or something else is.” (and then Jeremiah 17.9 is noted) They admonished to choose instead to “lead your heart to that which is best in the long run…”
So, Day 1 Love is Patient
This chapter is sort of the foundation for the book or the ‘dares.’ They say, “Love is built on two pillars that best define what it is. Those pillars are patience and kindness.” I would have said the two pillars of love are: Faith and Mercy. But I didn’t write The Love Dare… And so the first dare is the dare to be patient.
Here are a few of the chapter quotes: “Patience is a deep breath. It clears the air. It stops foolishness from whipping its scorpion tail all over the room.” And a few others: “Patience, however, makes us wise… helps you give your spouse permission to be human… it understands that everyone fails…” This is why I would say one of the pillars of love is mercy — it’s the gift of God’s mercy that enables us to be patient and so on.
The Dare (in part): For the next day, resolve to demonstrate patience and to say nothing negative to your spouse at all…”
Each day’s entry has this exercise following ‘dare’ “_____Check here when you’ve completed today’s dare. ”
A couple of questions prompts recollection of the day and reactions to situations.
Well… I can happily say I’ve been patient with my husband. This is very easy bcz he is very easy to live with and years have taught me to rest in his care for me. But I have thought on other days when I was impatient with a decision he was making or not making and I couldn’t see why he was doing thus and so. Interestingly, very seldom has he been ‘wrong’ in a decision or a plan — he might disagree — but I see with 20/20 hindsight why he did some of the things I initially thought weren’t the wisest decisions. And I shudder to think where we’d be had my plan been agreed to or whatever when we had two different views on a decision. It’s very, very rare that we have different views on a decision — as opinionated as I am, I can pretty readily see his side or idea and can see the wisdom in it.
We had a situation come up over the weekend that needed to be handled this morning and I knew my husband would take care of it… and I smiled as I knew this day’s dare… I genuinely rested in whatever he needed to do today because I had predetermined to be patient! no matter what! ;o) What a blessing it was to just watch the situation be resolved so well and know that the LORD is glorified by a resolve to trust in Him.
I notice that I am not patient when I don’t have my ‘stuff done’ or when I have neglected to do what I ought — when I feel threatened by a situation or something. It’s sort of the precursor to a defensive answer when responding to why I should do something or why I haven’t done something or when I am nervous about what “someone might think” — then I might be impatient with him (or my children or myself!!) — but, again, time and experience has really taught me to listen to what he has (or they have) to say and why he’s (or they’re) saying it.
A blessing: the determination and decision to BE patient — to be a patient wife (and mother)! It’s been hard today to simply use this dare specifically for Wes and not also for the rest of my family and my thoughts… but I’ll take that as an admonition from the LORD. Other parts of this book *are* just for Wes. ;o)
By the way… this book is a forty day journey — but it’s really intended to be a launching of a lifetime lifestyle of genuine love for one’s spouse.
It’s been a good day — a sunny day here. Tomorrow: Day 2 — Love is Kind