She is lovely in every way. Silky blonde hair, porcelain skin, a wide inviting smile and gentle, kind spirit. I’ve admired her since the first day I saw her walking down the hall wearing a bold ankle-length dress with confidence and ease. She is fashionable. She is genuine. She’s my new friend.
And every time I see her, she’s wrapped in a flowing skirt unlike anything I have in my closet.
So one day while waiting outside the office at pick-up time, I felt comfortable at last asking this fellow school mom the question I’ve had in mind for months. Where do you buy your clothes?
In other words, how do you pull off this beautifully intimidating look day after day? As I show up (happily, mind you) in leggings and a sweatshirt, she looks like she just walked off the pages of a Paris magazine.
“Everywhere!” She answered, and then she listed various shops and cities around the world where she purchases her amazing wardrobe. Femininity is her style, and it suits her, truly it does. But what struck me even more than the clothes themselves was the primary reason she gave for choosing them.
“My husband likes to see me in dresses,” she said. “So I dress this way for him.”
Something about that is downright beautiful.
Hear my heart in this—I’m not suggesting we all need to start dressing according to our husband’s fantasies. If that were the case then I’d be stuffed into a pair of Levi’s and cowgirl boots right now instead of—you guessed it—leggings. The point here is not clothing or appearances at all. Wear what you want.
But let me ask you a question. When was the last time you did something—anything—just because your husband liked it?
Not because you were guilted into it or because you reached a compromise. But simply because you thought first not of yourself but of him—his wishes, his preferences, his comfort.
Yeah . . . I can’t remember, either. And that’s a problem. Why?
Because God created marriage to reflect the selfless, sacrificial love that Christ has for the church. Christ redeems us, protects us, provides for us and died for us. So if I can’t sacrifice some little part of me today or tomorrow or next week in order to love my husband as Christ loves, then I am not reaching the full potential God designed for my marriage.
I’m stuck in myself, while on the other end of the spectrum God says, “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35).
I want to be blessed, don’t you? So what can we do today to get in on God’s promise?
Let the hubby pick the movie, maybe.
Cook his favorite meal.
Wear that perfume he loves, just because he loves it.
Just pick something small and do it. It’s not so hard, right? Then let’s just wait and see how the blessings return to us, not only when our husbands are likely encouraged to reciprocate (which is never the motivation although it’s quite a perk) but especially when we discover we’re building marriages rooted in Christ’s capacity for selfless love. Those kinds of marriages have supernatural power to blossom and grow strong.
Sounds like a pretty awesome blessing to me.
“Love is very patient and kind, never jealous or envious, never boastful or proud, never haughty or selfish or rude. Love does not demand its own way…” (1 Corinthians 13:4–5a, TLB).