“Kind” is defined as friendly, generous, understanding, charitable, considerate, forbearing, tolerant and agreeable (among other things.)

That’s a rather long list, isn’t it? It does seem a little daunting. I do think they all have a common factor — love. Would you agree?

People, all of us, tend to be motivated mostly selfishly, it’s built into us. The first thing we think about is what we want to do, or what we think about something, or how it affects us. I notice that most of the time when I’m not feeling very agreeable about something, it’s ultimately because it inconveniences me in someway.

If  I get short with my husband when he asks me to run an errand, I know deep down that the reason is because I didn’t want to change my plans or alter my route. I can see it when I do it with my children, too. Me, me, me, my, my, my.

I’m not saying that I should say “yes” to *everything* or that I should bend over backwards so far for everyone else that I can’t get anything done. There *are* times that it’s okay to say “no.”

What I *am* saying is that we are able to identify when we’re being disagreeable because we’re being selfish, and that being selfish and self-centered is not okay with me. I don’t want to be so focused on what I want that I miss out on opportunities to spend time with my family, serve them, and love on them.

I also know this: many times when I stop, take a breath, and put down what I’m working on to do something for my family, I end up being glad that I took the time to do it. It feels good to do things for other people; it feels good to know that I’ve been able to help my husband out in some way.

Something else I’ve been thinking about lately is trying to be more forbearing and understanding. I have no idea if my husband’s mood is because of a bad day or some kind of stress and worry that I don’t know about. I don’t know if the reason he’s asking me to do something is because he’s overwhelmed with things to do.

Of all the people in the world that I should be kind, generous, loving, giving, understanding and agreeable to — who else more than my husband? Too often I am short, impatient, irritated and inconvenienced. I don’t want to be that kind of wife and I don’t want to be that kind of person.

The good news is that I don’t have to be that way. It’s an easy fix. I always feel the irritation coming on — I can catch it pretty quick, and I can choose to make a different decision. Even if I don’t, if I mess up, I can stop, apologize and choose to do the right thing instead. The warning bells are pretty loud, and decision is usually pretty obvious.

I know I’m specifically talking about marriage, but this is advice for all relationships, really.

If you would like to join in, the rules are simple. Link up an encouraging post about marriage with the direct url to the post. Next week’s word is “Long-Suffering.” Join us then for more Marriage Monday!

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Hey, y’all! I’m Amber and I wear many hats. I drink a ton of coffee and I’m constantly sweeping crumbs off the floor. After 18 years of homeschooling, I’m getting close to graduating my third child and now we are starting over at preschool with our fourth, Lil Miss Mouse. She keeps us young and she’s the main reason for my excessive coffee consumption. Drink up!