Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Wife Rule #97: She'll Love You Forever

It's been a while since I've railed against consumerism making banal what could otherwise be something truly special. But before I start, let's be honest: Valentine's Day has been a big commercial racket for a long, long time. There's a whole industry built around guilting clueless guys into dropping big coin to purchase random objects to shower upon their women, in order to win their affections. Kind of like the half-chewed pieces of mouse and lizard our cat used to cough up on our front porch for us. Delightful.

So it shouldn't have surprised me when I got the following urgent message in my e-mail inbox this morning:

[Big Box Store Name in BOLD LETTERS]


Have you ordered her flowers yet? [written in curly script that looks kind of feminish]

Yada Yada offer details, something about $64.99 DELIVERED

WHAT? $64.99 on a bunch of crummy flowers that will be dead in a week? You've got to be KIDDING! [not in the e-mail]

She'll love you forever! [written in the same curly, scrapbooky script]

[end of urgent message]

Now, I'm a firm believer in buying my woman flowers from time to time, and I don't do it nearly often enough.

But I suppose what I take issue with is the final sales pitch, She'll love you forever. We men want to believe this appealing lie so badly that just hearing it said, no matter the source, is usually enough to get us to spend the money, take the item home, and win the big smile and the kiss from The Honey. But it's still a lie.

Because you and I both know that those crummy flowers will be dead in a week, tossed in the trash can, and your wife will be expecting you to take out the trash. And pick up your socks.

Store-bought bliss never lasts.

So with that rant behind me, I do believe there is a way for you to kindle the sparks of romance this Valentine's Day that will help your wife want to love you forever. In fact, I am bold enough to protest that there is really only one rule that you need to follow to yield these magical results:

Treat your woman like a daughter of God.

For in fact, she is a daughter of God. It doesn't matter whether or not you believe it; it doesn't even matter whether she believes it, or acts like it; it is still true.

So how do you treat a daughter of God? If you have a daughter of your own, imagine how you would want her to be treated. If you don't, then imagine how you would want your mother, or sister, or some woman that you truly love and respect to be treated.

Now multiply that level of treatment by a million.

I'm sure that's still far short of any accurate measure of how our Father in Heaven feels about His daughters, but you start to get the idea.

Treat her with respect. Treat her with dignity. Treat her with deference. Treat her with unselfishness. Treat her with affection. Talk to her. Listen to her. Serve her. Figure out what makes her feel loved, and do it. Repeatedly.

If it's flowers, then give them to her, but not because they will make her love you forever. Give them to her because you love her forever.

In short, treat her like royalty, all the time, every day of her life. She is royalty. She is the daughter of a King.

And if you do that, she just might love you forever back.

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