"Love does not demand its own way." 1 Cor. 13:5
In Part 1, we discussed the conflict of dwelling on our “face and form” vs. “reality is from the neck up” in our culture. God created marital intimacy as a precious representation of the union in the Trinity, and the depths of His desire for us. How do we love selflessly from the “neck up” and also give our marriage a passion spark?
Loving selflessly in our culture involves falling in love with the neck up. Realize that you fell in love with a unique person. Psalm 139:14 thanks God “for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous – how well I know it.” How do you show your uniqueness to yourself and to your partner? I recommend a quick survey in Strong Marriages, strongmarriages.com, called the Connect Assessment developed by John Trent Ph.D. Take the assessment and find out about your uniqueness and how you relate to others.
The Connect Assessment lays out four different personality strengths: leaders, like a lion: relators, like a golden retriever: organizers, like a beaver: or the life of the party, like an otter. We usually have a primary talent that guides most of how we communicate and a secondary talent that works in the background. After you both take the assessment, have a date and answer the following questions:
How do you see your true personality being displayed in your marriage? If it flourishes and is accepted by you and your partner - you are loved from the “neck up.”
Do you see your personality being squashed because of your role or just ignorance? Then it is time to affirm your Psalm 139:14 uniqueness.
Trade assessments now and take turns reading your partner’s connecting talents. Verbally affirm each trait of his or her talents with some emotion. For example, “Dear wife your fun loving laugh makes our home a happy place. Thank you.” Or “You are prettiest Mrs. Otter I know.” Let’s dive in and get to know our partners better.
Dwell on the fact that God made each of us unique. Rejoice! Affirm their lion, golden retriever, beaver or otter. This gives our marriages a face-lift that also blesses the passion of our marriages.