{merrily married} what you bring in

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

A few weeks ago, BH and I had a fun family home evening on marriage. We really enjoyed Elder L Whitney Clayton's April 2013 Conference talk "Watch and Learn". He described what a really wonderful marriage looked like and listed many things that happily married people do. So we decided to see how we measured up according to Elder Clayton's standard. We printed the talk and grabbed two highlighters, one pink and one green. We read the talk together and highlighted the things we felt we were doing well in green and the things we needed to work on in pink. I was feeling pretty good as we went through the talk and was making a lot of green marks until we hit a certain topic that took me a little aback. All of a sudden I was all pink. Can you guess which section it was?


I had just reaffirmed to my spouse that I cherished our marriage and prized it above anything in my life. We had shared with each other how important it was that our relationship be based on faith in the Lord and in each other and how strong our relationship was because of our common faith. We had shared experiences with each other on how repentance and the Atonement are big factors in our relationship and that we could get through anything and become anything we dreamed because we relied on the power of repentance to the Lord and to each other. Then came this little doosie:

Humility is the essence of repentance. Humility is selfless, not selfish. It doesn’t demand its own way or speak with moral superiority. Instead, humility answers softly 2 and listens kindly for understanding, not vindication. Humility recognizes that no one can change someone else, but with faith, effort, and the help of God, we can undergo our own mighty change of heart. 3  Experiencing the mighty change of heart causes us to treat others, especially our spouses, with meekness. 4 Humility means that both husbands and wives seek to bless, help, and lift each other, putting the other first in every decision. Watch and learn: repentance and humility build happy marriages.
 Whoa. I loved my Babe more than anything in the world, apparently, except myself. I had a habit of speaking with moral superiority, believing my beliefs to always be right. I looked back on our recent conversations and realized that I sought to vindicate my own position instead of really seeking to understand my husband's. I had been seeking to change his heart and mind instead of working on my own change of heart. And I certainly did not put him first in every decision. Suddenly the way I always handed him the glass with a little less juice showed my true intentions more than the gorgeous pictures on our walls of us on our wedding day, smiling brightly in front of the Salt Lake temple. I had turned from devoting myself to what was best for my hubby and family to what was best for me.

There I was with the answer to the question rolling around the back of my head for the past while; "Why after two years of marriage and pretty little baby was I finding it hard to hold my temper?" It wasn't because of the baby, though that added stress and drain on my resources was a real force to be reckoned with. It wasn't because the honeymoon period of our marriage was over and now we were just like everyone else. It wasn't because my hubby had started to become less forgiving. It was because I was being selfish!

I had never felt like BH and I were a just a normal everyday couple. We were special and exceptional. I refused to believe that it was okay to bicker and fight because that is what normal couples do. But I was surprised by what I found out, that we weren't exceptional because we had some special attribute or power, but that we were special because we treated each other that way. We treated each other like the magnificent people that Heavenly Father probably thought we could be.We treated our relationship like gold and that is what we got back from it.

My cute geek hubby wrote a beautiful best man speech for his ex-bandmate's wedding this last weekend, in which he quoted a master marriage counselor,
You find only what you bring in.   -Yoda
In our relationships we find the same that we bring in. If we bring selflessness and dedication to meeting others needs, we will find selflessness in others and our own needs will be met. If we bring openness and respect for others, we will find caring and kind responses from others.

Where my heart lies, there my treasure shall lie also and I want my treasure to be my family. So that is where I am going to focus my heart and my scripture study for the next little while. I'll share what I learn with you if you share what you know with me too! So tell me, what makes you cherish your marriage? What is your best advise to putting your marriage first? What do you do to keep yourself focused on your spouse and away from being selfish?

The past few days have been hard but rewarding as I work for my change of heart. But it's also been so fun to show BH how much he means to me. Sparkling cherry limeade went a long way with that ;)

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  1. Thanks, I've been struggling lately, (and potty-training isn't helping) but some humilty probably will.


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