Serving your husband in spite of your newborn

If there is one common theme in the life and ministry of Jesus, it's servanthood. Serving was the way Christ demonstrated love during His brief stay on earth. As mothers, we live drowning in a sea of service to our loved ones. The words mother and service are so intertwined, it would be nearly impossible to untangle them. Some of us serve to the breaking point while some of us struggle with how to go from only thinking of our own needs to transitioning to a mind full of thoughts and acts of love towards our offspring. But in the midst of trying to balance all that new motherhood throws at us, we often overlook a most important factor: our husbands.

Yes, we're exhausted. How can I emphasize this more? We just birthed a miniature human being and are now expected to milk it on demand and try to recover, eat healthy, tend to the older children, keep a home, and five bazillion other things...who has time to think of the other half of this craziness when you can't even remember the last time you peed in peace!

But all of these things aren't good enough excuses to overlook the precious man that God gifted in a husband. This, to me, is the hardest part of a new baby or just being a family in general. Balancing all these things, albeit, very noble and wonderful things, and making our marriage relationships priority one (aside from our relationships with God) is vital and it's not for sissies.

it's the little things Pay attention to what makes your husband relax, smile, and feel special? Write them down. And make sure you do one of those small gestures everyday. This doesn't have to be extravagant or time consuming. Just keep it simple...simply loving him will make a huge difference.

speak his love language Does your husband love to have things done for him? Serve him by laying his work clothes out or bringing him his favorite drink while he's mowing the lawn. Does he love physical touch? Make sure to hug and kiss on him each time you pass him by at home or set up a romantic 10 min massage for all his hard work. Does he love to hear you praise him? Make sure you speak encouragement and love towards him and watch how appreciated he feels!

not one size fits all We all have different situations, family dynamics and ways we give and receive love so how you nurture your marriage will not look the same as how your best friend does.

pray Pray that God will keep your sights both on him and in protecting your marriage during these times when the kids are needy and your family is growing. Spend at least a couple of minutes in prayer together each day and relish in the closeness it inevitably brings.

wants and needs The children's needs don't have to be neglected based on your husbands wants. But his needs cannot be neglected because of the children's wants. Remember, children benefit from seeing a loving, strong, prioritized marriage relationship and should know that mommy and daddy together, come first. You need to maintain this as much as possible so when you are left with just one another someday, you won't have to remember how to be a couple.

when you have nothing else to give There are many times when we are completely empty and have nothing else to give one another...it's inevitable. It happens to those of us with the best intentions. In these times, just remember why you got married in the first place (bust off the cobwebs of your wedding album if that helps), purpose to get out together as a couple and enjoy a hobby together or a nice peaceful, sans kid meal. Or just stay in, if you can't get a sitter, and have a date night after the kids are in bed. We have done this countless times and it's made all the difference.

Serving our husbands can bring great joy and it's what Christ has called us to do. Together, you are busy serving the next generation and that's an all-consuming task at times. Don't forget to take time to serve each other and nurture a bond that's much stronger than any parent/child relationship. For what God has put together, let no man (or child) put asunder.

-Alicia