Mark 10 Nine


Are you happily married and looking for tips on maintaining a God-honoring marriage? This weekly devotional will give you encouragement for your marriage.

How to Serve Others in Your Marriage

In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ Acts 20:35 

I was thinking recently how easy it can be to have our thoughts drift from “Here I am, Lord, send me” to “Here I am Lord, bless me.” It made me evaluate if our family is really available for service to the Lord and others or if we were getting consumed with being idle while waiting for the Lord’s blessings.

Serving others comes at a cost. It requires a commitment of both time and resources. It requires time that may feel limited in seasons. It also requires a good attitude.

Do you have a marriage that is inward-focused or outward-focused? Do you and your spouse find ways to minister to others, or does that feel like a chore?

It can be very easy to become so focused on your family that you overlook the needs of others around you. The opposite can also be said. Some people get so focused on serving others that their family suffers. There will be seasons in your marriage when ministering and serving people outside of your marriage may be limited, but it is still possible on some level.

For example, when we had small kids, I had three kids under two years old. I was in survival mode for a while, so our ability to serve others looked different than it does now. In this season, my youngest is in high school and drives herself around, so we have more flexibility in how we serve others.

I want to encourage you to sit down with your spouse and talk together about how your family can bless others. Your spouse may have interests that differ from yours. That is okay. Be willing to try new things!

As the holidays approach, we see people increasing their philanthropy in time and money. What if we purposed to be families who serve in all seasons? Society gives us a message that we are the most important thing. We are trained to be me-centered. What would our marriages and families look like if we became others-centered?

You may be wondering how you can do that in your family. Let me share a few examples with you.

~ Find an organization in your area that needs volunteers. Some may want a monthly commitment, and others may be looking for a group to come in once to work on a project.

~ Is there a single mother you could mentor and encourage as a family? You could help with childcare or prepare a meal for her.

~ Minister to a foster family. Maybe God hasn’t called you to foster, but you could be a huge encouragement by serving a foster family. You could invite friends to serve with you, and each of you could commit to taking one meal each week to the family. Can you help with childcare or running errands?

Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow. Isaiah 1:17

~ Ask your church to connect you with a widow or widower who could use some family encouragement. That may mean inviting them over for dinner and a game or helping with transportation to appointments.

~ What hobby do you have that could bless someone else? Do you love baking? Can you bake treats for the local homeless shelter to pass out? Do you have a large circle of friends? Gather them and collect toys for kids in the children’s hospital.

~ Invite a newly married couple over to dinner. Be a mentor for them as they begin their life together.  

There are so many ways you and your spouse can look outside of your home for ways to bless others. The list above is just a sampling. I would love to hear your ideas. Share your suggestions in the comment section.

I can’t wait to hear how you and your spouse start blessing others and seeing a softening in your relationship as a result.

Idle hands are the devil’s workshop; idle lips are his mouthpiece. Proverbs 16:27

God bless,

 

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