Apr 122016 17 Responses

A Litmus Test for His Love

Everyone lies. Long before the fictional character Gregory House on the medical drama House, MD said it, the Bible illustrated it. Part of human nature is a natural tendency to use our words to deflect, hide, appease, or manipulate others.

We all lie:

  • The fish wasn’t as big as we said
  • The score wasn’t as low as we claimed
  • The ball was actually inside the line and not out

Everyone lies.

  • No we aren’t “fine.”
  • We weren’t only 5 minutes away.
  • We didn’t just need a minute of your time.
  • And yes, you do look fat in that dress.

Everyone lies.

But there is a difference between the normal (although unnecessary and still sinful) lies which people tell on a daily basis and intentional deceit which can destroy a relationship. (See: Can You Tell Your Spouse the Truth?)

While everyone might lie to some degree, not everyone:

  • hides an addiction
  • conceals an affair
  • tells you whatever you want to hear
  • covers where they’ve been or who they’ve spoken with
  • takes out secret loans
  • acts in a way completely contrary to what they have said

If I had to narrow down love to a single litmus test, it would be this:

Does your husband do what he says?

I don’t simply mean he gets on the honey-do list without you nagging (although that might be one characteristic). I am saying, when he says “I’m sorry,” does he back up that apology by doing his best to change his course of action? When he says, “I want to get better,” does he take concrete actions steps to make better choices? When he says, “I want us to have a good marriage,” does he take initiative in growing and learning positive skills which will impact your marriage?

If the answer is no, he doesn’t love you. (See: 4 Lies to Never Tell Your Spouse)

When his actions don’t match his words, it’s a sign he is simply saying what you want to hear. He is trying to appease you instead of loving you. He is attempting to look good while putting no effort into the relationship. It’s a sign he loves himself and not you.

Love motivates us to action. It includes words, but it doesn’t consist solely of empty words. It’s backed up by movement. When a man is truly in love, his actions prove his devotion.

A man who is in love (or better stated, a man who is choosing to love) acts differently than someone who is not acting out of love. When a man is not in love, he will say whatever is necessary in the moment to appease whomever is before him. If he needs to say “I’m sorry,” he will, but since it isn’t sincere, he will quickly repeat the same action which required the apology. If he needs to make promises, he will make them, but he will never back up his words with actions.

Does your husband do what he says?

This one characteristic radically changes marriage. (See: Trust Is Everything in Marriage)

If a spouse lies, conversation is useless. A couple can talk about an issue and find an appropriate resolution, but there is no trust present because they both know that one of them will never live up to their end of the bargain. Countless couples repeatedly face the same issue not because they can’t negotiate a common ground, but because one spouse refuses to back up words with actions.

Yet when truth is a defining characteristic of communication, everything changes. Any issue can be discussed because both spouses know the conversation will be fruitful. Even if they can’t find a shared viewpoint on a point of controversy, they can take one another at their word and understand the opposing viewpoint. They can rest in whatever resolution is decided knowing the other spouse will do what they said.

A healthy relationship is built on trust and trust is born from truth. When your husband does what he says, it is a sign he loves you. When he consistently fails to do so, it is a sign the relationship has a deeper problem than whatever specific issue is being discussed.

17 Responses to A Litmus Test for His Love
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