Last week I spent a few days in New York visiting family and catching up on some David’s Refuge business. Before leaving I hid a note for Brenda to discover. The note was short. It simply said,
“I love you! When you find this note email me with three reason why you still love me.”
Even though we have been married for almost 33 years, I felt like a school boy waiting to hear how my girlfriend was going to reply to the note I stuck in her textbook. Two days later I got the following reply:
3 Reasons why I still am in love with you:
1. You unselfishly care for me (help with meals, cleaning up, bills, etc.)
2. You are a wise counselor, filled with insight and able to see through the muck to the real issues.
3. You listen well.
4. You love me unconditionally…in spite of my weaknesses.
5. You are very funny…you make me laugh (and others too!)
6. You love people.
7. You are ministry minded and desire to serve God with passion.
8. You encourage me to be all I can be and explore new things.
9. You are handsome!
10. You are disciplined.
11. You strive to take good care of your body.
12. We are a team and you view our relationship in that way.
13. You are a servant, always willing to help others.
14. You are a great father to our boys.
15. You are an amazing grandpa to Ezra and Levi.
16. You are a talented writer.
17. You are a great speaker.
18. You are confident in who you are as a person.
19. You are compassionate towards others; incredible with those who are hurting or sick.
20. You like to spend time with me!
21. You love to cook and create amazing meals.
22. You are creative…more than you realize.
23. You are thoughtful…writing me cute notes and hiding them!
24. You are a hard worker.
25. You love the Lord and listen to Him.
26. You are a great preacher and teacher.
27. You are an encourager.
28. You are fun to be with.
29. You learn from your mistakes or when you are corrected.
20. You are great at picking up the house and bringing order to chaos.
I love you! Have a great day!
To say I was blown away is an understatement. When I called Brenda to thank her, I asked her why she sent twenty when I only asked for three. She said once she got started, she couldn’t stop; they just kept coming! My note was a great reminder of how we often simply forget to express to one another why we are still together and why we love each other. We both agreed how easy it to let a day go by without saying I love you to the people we love the most.
I read one study that interviewed 2,071 couples looking at the impact of regularly saying “I love you” to your spouse or partner. Sadly, they discovered the longer people stayed together, the less they say I love you. They found just 50 percent of respondents who have been in relationships for two to five years still tell their partner “I love you” every day. Sadly, of those who were still together more than 10 years, only 33 percent still said “I love you” every day. Incredibly, that number went all the way down to 18 percent for those who had been together for more than 50 years. When I read these statistics it broke my heart. I wonder how many relationships could return to the initial affection and attraction that brought them together by simply beginning to say on a daily basis, “I LOVE YOU!”
When a couple checks into their weekend for David’s Refuge, they often come exhausted and weary from the demands of being the mommy and daddy of a child with special needs. In the busyness of life and the extra load these folks bear, very often their marriage relationship is bruised and battered. Often these folks need a little encouragement to remind each other why they love each other and are committed to staying together. A few months ago we started to include the five questions at the beginning of this blog. It was our hope that it would spark the flame that brought them together in the first place. Maybe we should simply add the question, “What made your first love me?” How would you answer that question?
Who in your life needs to hear the words, “I love you?” Whether you are married or not, there are people in your life who need to be reminded that they are loved by you. Tell them! Right now! Call them, email them, text them. Tell them “I love you.”