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Learn to meet your spouse's needs

  • Whitney Hopler Live It Editor
  • 2001 27 Jul
Learn to meet your spouse's needs
When you seek to meet your spouse's needs, you unlock great potential for your marriage to grow. God will bless both you and your spouse by deepening your love as you serve each other.

Here are some of the deepest needs of men and women - and ways you can strive to meet them:

  • Unconditional love: Husbands and wives alike need to know that their spouses are committed to them no matter what. Assure your spouse of your love in all situations, and pray for God's grace to help you keep that commitment, especially during tough times. Extend grace to your spouse when dealing with his or her weaknesses. Encourage your spouse whenever you can, seek to understand your spouse and build trust with him or her. Ask the Holy Spirit to give you gentleness when interacting with each other.

  • Intimacy: Sex is very important to men when developing intimacy, but women prize conversation when building intimacy. Learn your husband's sexual needs and commit yourself to meeting them. Pray for God to heal any unresolved emotional pain in your marriage that may be obstructing your sexual relationship. Understand that your wife will not be able to respond romantically to you if you aren't loving her the way God intends. Talk openly and often with your wife, and listen actively to her. Work to resolve conflicts in your marriage.

  • Friendship: Both husbands and wives need their spouses to be their best friends. But since men and women relate differently, don't expect your husband to act like a girlfriend, and don't expect your wife to be one of the guys. Appreciate the unique ways you and your spouse complement each other. Be honest and forgiving with each other. Enter your spouse's world so you can share activities that he or she enjoys and understand why they're important to him or her. Love each other sacrificially, and consider your marriage a full partnership in which you each work for the other's good.

  • Spiritual intimacy: God wants all husbands and wives to be growing spiritually, and it's vital for you and your spouse to help each other grow closer to Christ. Participate in a biblical church together, and make time to pray together daily. Give your spouse opportunities to express his or her spiritual gifts, and support your spouse during the process. Read Scripture regularly and discuss it together.

  • Encouragement: God can use you as a vehicle of His love when you encourage your spouse. Study your spouse to discover how best to encourage him or her. Give your relationship a high priority in your life. Show appreciation for your spouse's efforts, and point out his or her potential. Regularly praise your spouse. Remind him or her of God's work in your life together. When you're apart, pray for each other.

Adapted from The 5 Love Needs of Men & Women, copyright 2000 by Gary and Barbara Rosberg. Published by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Ill., www.tyndale.com, 1-800-323-9400.

Gary and Barbara Rosberg have been married for more than 25 years. Together, they host three radio programs, including the nationally syndicated, daily program, "America's Family Coaches LIVE."