Greetings and salutations!!! Silly, I know, but today is all about greetings and impressions. Here is the dare for today: THINK OF A SPECIFIC WAY THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO GREET YOUR SPOUSE TODAY. DO IT WITH A SMILE AND ENTHUSIASM. THEN DETERMINE TO CHANGE YOUR GREETING TO REFLECT YOUR LOVE FOR THEM. So I thought to myself "no problem!" And I also thought "is this gonna get any harder cause so far it hasn't really been all THAT hard". When will I learn to just shut-up?? Keep my thoughts quiet??
It started this morning when loving husband woke me up at 5:55am to tell me he was leaving and I needed to get up so I wouldn't fall back asleep. This is the most hated part of my relationship with Frank. See, if I have failed to mention, he is a morning person... I am NOT! Maybe if he didn't sound so stinking cheerful at that time of the morning it might go over better. Since I already knew what the dare for the day was gonna be, I intentionally made sure my tone was nice when I said to bug off. No, just kidding. I didn't say that. I thought it, but I didn't say it! I told him thank you and I would be up in a few minutes and not to worry. Did you hear that?? I said "thank you" at 5:55am!!! Miracles never cease :)
I went about my day and as the time drew closer for Frank to get home, again I had the fleeting thought of this dare stuff getting harder. Frank came home and let's just say it was obvious that he was NOT in a good mood. Bad day at work. He confirmed his bad day at work with his bad attitude towards me and his snippy tone of voice. Sadly, I did not find that HDT in time. I didn't really say anything ugly, but my tone wasn't very nice. So, same thing. However, this time I did catch myself a lot sooner. And, I just shut my mouth. Normally, I would just keep going until it escalated into something completely ridiculous. (shocking I know) But this time I didn't.
Something amazing happened. Within a very few minutes, Frank came to me and said he was sorry! I couldn't believe it! Most of the time, he would just act like it never happened. I would then huff and puff for the rest of the evening until such time I could no longer stand it. I would then proceed to bring everything back up PLUS some more that I felt didn't get resolved the last time... or the time before that. But this time, HE nipped it in the bud so to speak. When before, I really needed him to gravel when he said he was sorry, and most of the time that wasn't enough; this time, it didn't really take anything for me to be over it. It did make me stop and think about how often I make my attitude dependant on his. Sad. I know. But I bet a lot of us do that. Over the past week, Frank has been great. So things haven't seemed that hard where the dare is concerned. But the ONE time that Frank had a bad day and attitude to match, I failed. It got harder, and I failed. I chose to respond in an unloving way. Regardless of his attitude and how he was treating me in the moment. At least I shut my mouth quicker than I normally would.
I don't know if it was him or if it was me getting better or maybe even a combination of the two, but over the last several weeks, I have been studying about forgiveness. And our lack of it.. Whereas before, I needed to have Frank apologize and I needed to see that he was in fact really sorry BEFORE I would offer forgiveness, now I realize that was in fact probably a lot of the problem. See, Jesus never intended for it to work that way. I don't give forgiveness because the other person deserves it. I should especially extend forgiveness when they don't. Our relationships are not supposed to be based on what we deserve. More times than not... they are.
We often times don't think about the way we greet each other as being very important. In fact, I bet most of us don't really give it much thought at all. The tone we have first thing in the morning, the look on our face when we are speaking to each other, even the way we speak to each other on the phone.
When someone makes you feel like they are glad to see you or glad to be around you, your sense of self worth increases. It makes you feel valued and important. Too often I am distracted when Frank comes home. I don't make eye contact. I'm shouting "Hey!" over the noise of the CIRCUS people. What is my priority?? I want Frank to feel important and valued in the same way that I want to feel that.
It starts with a simple greeting. It's about making an effort, really. Whether in person or on the phone, I need to reflect that I am glad to see/hear him. And even though I may not have greeted him the way I really wanted to this morning *wink wink*, I know that part of my showing love is to love him in the greeting.
So, say good morning with a smile...