Out With the Garbage and Flannel Pajamas

“My lover is mine and I am his.”  Song of Songs 2:16

Were you surprised by the definition of romance your spouse offered last night? Romance can mean vastly different things to women and men, but for most of us the word describes that wonderful feeling of being noticed, wanted, and pursued— of being at the very center of our lover’s attention. Women are inclined to define romance as the things a husband does to make them feel loved, protected, and respected. Flowers (if they aren’t too cheap), compliments, nonsexual touching, and love notes are all steps in the right direction. So is helping with the chores. As author Kevin Leman once said, “The greatest of all aphrodisiacs is for a man to take out the garbage for his wife.”

Men, on the other hand, rely more on their senses. They appreciate a wife who makes herself as attractive to her husband as possible. A man wants to be respected—and even better, admired—by his wife. He likes to hear his wife express genuine interest in his opinions, hobbies, and work.

Obviously, these are generalizations, so take your spouse’s definition to heart. Knowing how he or she perceives romance can help you avoid many misunderstandings and disappointments. With a little care and forethought, you can keep the flame of romance burning brightly.

Just between us . . .

• What’s the most romantic thing I’ve ever done for you?
• How do you feel about our personal definitions of romance?
• How can our differing views of romance strengthen our marriage?

Dear God, thank You for making us unique as a man and woman. Please help us understand and celebrate our carefully crafted differences. We want to become experts at pursuing and cherishing each other. Amen.

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This devotional is taken from Night Light for Couples. Copyright © 2000 by James Dobson, Inc. All rights reservedUsed with permission.