February 13, 2017

How to Love My Spouse Like They Want and Need to Be Loved

Written by Boyd Bailey

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – February 13, 2017

We love because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19

Marital love is much, much more than material love: a nice place to live, comfortable clothes, healthy food and reliable transportation. Providing for a family’s financial and physical security is responsible and necessary, but only the beginning when it comes to engaging the hearts of those we love and care for. A wife needs comfort, conversation and an assurance she is known. A husband needs a safe environment to process his pain, problems and fears. Intimacy comes when we move beyond surface sentimental love to a love that loves with God’s love.

The reason we are able to love well is because our Savior Jesus has already entered into the depths of our being and deposited His love deep into our heart and soul. In our own strength our love is limited and flawed with self dealing, but in the power of the Spirit our love rises above our little reservoir to a vast ocean of possibility produced by heaven’s showers of blessings. When we experience the warm embrace of our heavenly Father, the fire of our love engulfs.  

“Dear friends,  since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us” (1 John 4:11-12).

What makes your spouse come alive with energy for the Lord, life and work? Perhaps you ask them the ways they like to be loved—what causes them to feel cared for and understood. Love takes the time to remain a student of your husband or wife—for every season requires a new skill set in loving your family at their point of need. Newlyweds learn selflessness, a new parent needs help, a new job requires extra time, a health issue invites care giving, an empty nest is an opportunity to love each other deeply and serve others freely. Love prays for ways to love well.

What if someone is hard to love and they are not reciprocal with their love? Without removing our feelings of rejection, hurt and resentment we are incapable of loving well—forgiveness opens the floodgates of dammed up grace. Forgiveness is able to see another as a hurting human being who needs healing in their heart. As we forgive we ask God for His grace to honor others by making the extra effort to engage in their life. Love doesn’t stop at forgiveness but forges ahead to honor their spouse in ways they need and want to be loved—all fueled by Christ’s love.  

“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you” (John 15:12).



Heavenly Father, give me insight and skill in how to love my spouse the way He/she needs and wants to be loved. Help me really know him/her and make myself known to him/her.


Write a note to your spouse describing how you love and admire them for being themselves.

Related Reading

Hosea 3:1; John 13:34-35; Romans 12:10; 2 Corinthians 13:11; Ephesians 4:2

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Forgiveness is able to see another as a hurting human being who needs healing in their heart. #wisdomhunters #lovedwell

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5 minute video: Casting Crowns: Loving My Jesus Check out Shana and Boyd’s newest devotional book Two Minutes in the Bible for Women. Available now! If you are blessed by these daily devotionals please prayerfully consider a donation to support Wisdom Hunters Resources. We are trusting the Lord for His provision. Learn how to help. Our free Apple app

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