Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Honor ~ What does that look like?

I recently had a good friend of mine ask me the question, "what does honoring your husband look like?"  Wow, what a great question....we can all benefit from that way of thinking.  Honoring you spouse may look different from honoring another person but the idea is really the same.  When she asked this, I really had to sit down and think about it.  I even asked my husband to get his thoughts.

My idea is this.  Honoring happens in many ways, some visible and some not so much.  I may honor my husband in ways that he wouldn't notice, for instance, biting my tongue and letting him tell a story in his own way even though I may want to interrupt.  It may happen when there are many around and get to complaining about their spouses, and I choose to not enter into that talk.  It may be in backing up a decision that he has made that others might question.

There is a book out there called, The Five Love Languages, by Gary Chapman.  I believe that reading this book could possibly help in your endeavors to honor anyone, including your spouse.  It helps you discover what makes you tick, or makes you feel loved.  The five love languages include, quality time, physical touch, encouraging words, gift giving and acts of service.  If you can find out what your spouse needs, this can definitely help you honor them. My husband has two that are important to him, encouraging words and physical touch.  I have really had to work on the encouragement because I am not good at that.  But knowing that has helped me to work on that and try to do the things that make him feel loved.  My love language is quality time and I know that he works hard to fulfill that for me.  Adding to this thought, I believe that it does take a lifetime of learning about your spouse, to know the things that make them feel honored.  So, in that thought, it is something we have to purpose to do.

In asking my husband, the other day, if he could recall an instance when he felt like I honored him, he mentioned two that recently happened.  First, he had asked me about my thoughts on a decision that he was contemplating that would involve the whole family.  I gave him my thoughts and concerns but also added that I would support his decision either way.  He told me that he felt honored in that because he really wanted my thoughts to make a decision but felt like I really would support his final decision.

Now, my husband LOVES football, college, NFL, etc....and can get lost in watching game after game on a Saturday.  I used to get so offended by this, thinking that he would rather spend his time in front of a TV than with me.  But, I have come to realize that this is a way for him to relax and he just enjoys the game.  So, a couple Saturdays ago, I was trying to talk to him and noticed that he was trying but really wanted to watch the game.  So, I just said, "I will let you enjoy this game and I will go find something else for now."  Little did I know, he felt honored in that I recognized that he needed some rest and relaxation and it wasn't a threat to me at all.  He works hard and needs to have these moments to relax.

We can honor those around us in many ways.  Recognition is a good one.  Appreciation is another.  Honoring is really just thinking of another and placing them above yourself.  I am so glad that my friend asked me this question, because I think that we all can gain in the long run if we can learn what it is to honor another.