By Laura Way
“She’s my wife,” my husband said firmly … to our two small children.
They occasionally get into possessive little spats about whose mommy I am. His mock outrage never fails to release the tension.
But it also communicates I am, in fact, more than one person’s significant something.
It reminds me of the idea of a scarcity economy: a sizable gap between limited—i.e. scarce—resources and theoretically limitless wants.
Limitless wants. That sounds about right when it comes to my kids.
Or perceived expectations from work, friends, or other communities vying for time and attention.
Love isn’t a scarce resource. But time and energy are.
The tyranny of the urgent so easily takes over. I spend energy in a way that doesn’t necessarily match my heart’s intentions.
Loving my spouse well sometimes means making tough choices about how I use my time. Sometimes I need to say “no” to other demands or my own preferences and comfort.
For any of us, it might mean foregoing an afternoon break so the evening can be spent with a spouse—not finishing up work. Or not hitting the snooze button so you can share a quiet cup of coffee before the day gets going. Or limiting “yeses” that encroach upon valuable time together.
Sometimes for me, it means snuggling with my husband on the couch instead of “five more minutes” of cuddles with our children after bedtime. Or saying “yes” to learning the new game he ordered, instead of the easier option of our usual show at the end of a long day.
My time and energy feel scarce indeed. I’ve got to make sure I’m intentional to put it towards what I care about most.
The Good Stuff: Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. (Philippians 2:3-4)
Action Points: What are the main priorities/people/“yeses” vying for your time? Think of one way you’d like to prioritize your time and energy for your spouse. What do you need to say “no” to so you can make it happen?
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