It’s only a matter of days before Christmas is here. Have you gotten something for your spouse? Have you been able to figure what is the “perfect” gift for them? If not, you have come the right place! I have the perfect gift idea for you. It doesn’t matter if it’s a wife or a husband that you are gifting. It doesn’t matter if they are the pickiest person on the planet. It doesn’t even matter if you are not a big fan of your spouse right now. With this gift, one size fits all.
So, drum roll, please. Brrrr…..Brrrr….Brrrr….. (does that sound like drum roll to you??)
The best gift you can give your spouse (other than the one I mentioned in THIS blog post) is:
Give your time.
Yes, you heard me right. One of the best gifts you can give your spouse is your time.
One of the best ways to see what your priorities are is to look at your calendar. What is taking up most of your time? I know, you are going to tell me “well, duh, work…but I have to work.” Yes, a bulk of your time is work. And another bulk of your time is sleep. But what about that time in between. How are you spending that time?
You may “see” your spouse during that margin time…but do you intentionally spend quality time putting them first in your life? (Just being in the same room with your spouse while you make lunches for the kids or figure out the monthly budget doesn’t count). I am talking about time that you set aside to focus solely on your spouse….fulfilling a need of theirs, planning a special outing with them, going out of your way to show them (not just tell them) how much you love and appreciate them.
What does time quality time look like? And how do you gift it?
That is going to be different for everyone. And please do not give me the excuse that you don’t have the money for a babysitter or you don’t have time in your schedule for a regular date night or you couldn’t possibly go out of town for a night because the kids…or the job…or your dog need you and only you. Stop that. You are married. To someone that you really love. Someone that, when you first met them, you couldn’t bear to be apart from.
If you want something to happen, you will make it happen. Swap date night babysitting with another couple. Go for a walk on the beach or a hike in the woods instead of a pricey dinner out. Sit on the back porch with a favorite board game. (Ladies, there are a million cheap date ideas on Pinterest…go nuts!)
Sure,that honeymoon phase may be over, so to speak. But only because you choose it to be so. We all have a choice to put time and effort into our marriages in order to keep that spark going…in order to “keep that love alive.”
In order to stay fully connected to your spouse, you need TIME.
Not fancy gifts. Not a family vacation. Not even a double date with another couple. Quality time for just the two of you.
How do you give that as a gift?
How does “time” get wrapped up and placed under the Christmas tree?
One of Steve’s favorite gifts I have given him is a book of handmade coupons for all different kinds of quality time…things that are meaningful to us and things we enjoy doing together. All throughout the year, he could just hand me a coupon and I would do my best to make it happen as quickly as possible. Important: it included many things that he loves and I could take or leave. It was a sacrificial book of coupons for quality time. (Example: I am not a fan of going to movie theaters, but Steve is, so “going out to a movie” was a coupon.)
If you want to be a bit more extravagant, maybe you can plan and reserve a full day together, doing things that your spouse loves or both of you love. Or plan to visit the place you first met. Or get everything you need to work on a special project together.
If you are really craving dedicated time alone, plan a vacation or even one night away at a place that your spouse loves. And then go a step further and plan out details of your time that are focused on your spouses needs and desires.
If you tend to “wonder where the time went” on a regular basis, may I recommend that you set up several date days or nights in advance, including reserving a table or buying the tickets, so you are accountable to and committed to making that quality time happen.
If you still want to get your spouse the newest gadget or dazzling jewelry, consider attaching TIME to it. So, if you got your husband the latest runner’s watch, perhaps you could plan to run with him once a week. Or if you purchased that special pair of earrings for your wife, possibly you could plan a surprise dinner out with an outfit picked out for her to wear, including the earrings.
There are endless possibilities for you to give time.
You just need to make the choice to give it. If you genuinely have no idea how your spouse would want to spend time with you, ask. Seriously, just ask. Even the act of asking is sacrificial and loving. It’s a great start to connecting with your spouse this season.
We are praying that there will be a whole lotta time wrapped up under the tree this year!!