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HOW DO WE SPELL LOVE?-by Heidi McLaughlin

Posted: February 10, 2024

It’s the love month and I wonder how many of us are getting it right. I love what Rick Warren says in best selling book, “What on Earth Am I Here For?” He gets it right by quoting that the way to spell love is T.I.M.E.

We can always earn more stuff, but we can never earn more time. One of life’s greatest regrets is: I wish I had spent more time with the people I love. Our restless nature craves to be understood, accepted and loved. But many have lost their way and are looking for fulfillment in all the wrong places. Here are 4 ways to recapture and recalibrate our precious time.


It’s time to lay down our technology, look into each other’s eyes and engage in intimate, honest and meaningful conversations.  We must dig behind words and our emotions to find out what the other person is really saying. For example, when a wife says: “Don’t touch me”, it could mean: “You said you would take out the garbage last night and you didn’t do it …again.”  Or: “You said you would help put the children to bed but you worked late again.”

We need to stop and take the time to say: “Tell me what you really meant.”  You will be amazed at the real story behind the encrypted words.

I – INVEST IN A GOOD STORY I am a book junkie. When I am on vacation and find a great book, I often have the lights on until 2:00 in the morning. I find extreme pleasure in a well-written and engaging narrative.

You and I are created with a craving for pleasure. In our marriages and all relationships we must take time and be intentional about creating good stories. For example: A number of years ago one of my sons-in-law created a great story by orchestrating a mystery trip for his family.  He packed everyone’s overnight bags and told his wife and children to get into the car and look for clues. The mystery unfolded as they arrived at a ski resort where they enjoyed a weekend of reconnecting and making new memories. He created a great story.

If I don’t like the first 2 or 3 chapters of a book, I will usually put it down. We must take time to invest in the kind of stories that will leave people feeling connected and fulfilled.

M – MOVE FROM FEELING TO DOING When we are hurt, angry, or feel overlooked, we can’t stay in that “mad place”. Unresolved injured feelings build up resentment toxins that eventually destroy us. We must take TIME to stop and move from our hurt feelings to doing something about them.  Vulnerability and honest communication allows the Holy Spirit to find truth, offer forgiveness and sustain harmony.

E- EXPECT THE BEST AND ACCEPT THE WORST  It’s important we take time to encourage one another and build each other up in the gifts and abilities that God has given to us. This is not a competition, comparison or power struggle.  In the same way that iron sharpens iron, we need to “sharpen each other” to be our very best.  But none of us are perfect. When the other person messes up or we feel misunderstood we have to get off our high horse and show grace. We need each other.  When the rest of the world judges or criticizes us, we need our spouse or best friend to protect us and be in our corner.

The greatest gift we can give someone is our time. All of these suggestions take TIME, but they will bulletproof marriages and relationships and give us the pleasure, intimacy and love we are all looking for.


Posted in: Best friends, Boring marriage, Communication, companionship, expect the best, Expectations, Friendship, happiness, honesty, Intimacy, joy, love, make time for each other, Power of the Tongue, relationships, we need each other

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