>> Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Day 2: Love is kind
Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
In addition to saying nothing negative to your spouse again today, do at least one unexpected gesture as an act of kindness.
Well that dare looks easy enough doesn't it? I mean really, how hard can it be to do something nice for the person you love, right? Yes, looks can be deceiving. Let me share with you a little of what is in the book that makes this dare so difficult for me.
"Kindness is love in action. If patience is how love reacts in order to minimize a negative circumstance, kindness is how love acts to maximize a positive circumstance. Patience avoids a problem, kindness creates a blessing...For me, this dare so much harder than day one. This dare showed me how my own attitude and what I think really does effect how I show my love to my spouse. When I read this dare I thought "great, I already do so much, now I have to think of something else to do." How kind is that? Not very. I don't mean to say that my husband does nothing. He does do things, he goes to work all day and I appreciate that. I appreciate the fact that he works hard all day and for the time being I am able to stay home with the kids. When he comes home he does do things if I ask him to do something. I cook, I clean, I look after the kids, make their lunches, do the laundry, and on and on and now you want to me do something more. What about me? Hmmm looks like I'm missing some of the ingredients for kindness.
...break kindness down into four basic core ingredients:
Gentleness. When you're operating from kindness, you're careful how you treat your spouse, never being unnecessarily harsh. You're sensitive. Tender. Even if you need to say hard things you bend over backwards to make your rebuke or challenge as easy to hear as possible. You speak the truth in love.
Helpfulness. Being kind means you meet the needs of the moment...Kindness graces a wife with the ability to serve her husband without worrying about her rights...
Willingness. Kindness inspires you to be agreeable...stay flexible...Rather than complaining and making excuses you look for reasons to compromise and accommodate.
Initiative. Kindness thinks ahead and takes the first step....They don't require the other to get his or her act together before showing love...You see the need and make the move. First.
So now I'm seeing this dare is so much more than just picking some random thing and calling it my "nice thing I did for you dear". This dare is about changing my heart. Doing something truly from the kindness of my heart. Without worrying about what about me, without thinking "if he would just do ____ then I would be more than happy to do ____". It's not about him and what he does or doesn't do. It's about me being kind to him because I love him.
It took me most of the day to think of something I could do that really came from my heart. Something that I wasn't doing because I felt a sense of duty or being a martyr doing. He has been saying how sore his back has been lately, so after I got the baby to sleep I gave him a nice back rub. It was nice to sit with him and talk, it didn't take long time (I can't use that excuse "oh it takes so long, I'm so tired"...you know the lines) and he really enjoyed it. Afterward he said how much better that made him feel and how nice it was to have a back rub. And you know what? I felt good doing something nice and really and truly out of kindness. So sometimes the things that seem the hardest to do, end up leaving both you and your spouse feeling rewarded.
I think this dare is something I will continue to work on each day. Making sure my heart is in the right place when I do something for him. Not just doing it to do it, but really finding the kindness in my heart and doing it out of love.
What are your thoughts on day two's dare? Did you find it to be an easy dare or like me, something that needs more work?
Day 3: Love is not selfish (after reading the book for this challenge, I thought yesterday was hard - today doesn't get any easier.)
See how my friends who are also taking the challenge are doing:
@Peasinapod - Confessions Of An UnOrGaNiZeD Mom
@FlyingByFaith - Simply Complicated... That's Just Me...
@kjkmom2boys - Mom's Just One of the Boys
If you would like to join in the challenge just leave me a comment and a link to your blog and I'll add you to the list. :)