“What would you really like for a gift?” Bob asked me that question 30 years ago. Our children were 3 to 8 years old.
“I like surprises!”
Bob took my answer to heart. A few weeks later, he told me to take our girls over to a neighbor’s house and be ready at 3 pm on Friday for our weekly date. This peeked my curiosity since he didn’t get off work until 5. At 2:45 I walked them around the block to the neighbor’s and chatted for a few minutes. When I got back to our house around 3:02, I was met by Bob who told me I was late.
We got into the car, drove out of our subdivision, and headed up a main boulevard out of town with me making wild and frequent guesses and Bob refusing to give a substantive answer.
“Bob, where are we going???”
“I made reservations.”
“At a restaurant?”
“Bob, there is no restaurant out here. The only thing out here is the airport.”
“Bob, there is no restaurant at the airport!”
By then, we had arrived at the airport and I was whisked away for a wonderful weekend out-of-town. Even better was the fact that Bob had listened to me and the thought and effort he put into creating a surprise that genuinely spoke to my heart.
How do the gifts you give to your spouse speak to his or her heart? Are you really listening to what he or she wants? It may not be anything tangible.
As I write this, it’s almost Christmas. I decided to use “The Bob Method” and ask him what he really wanted. “I’d like to go someplace with you–maybe to a marriage conference.” (Whoo-hoo!) It will take until mid-March to give him his present, but I purchased the tickets for a Christian marriage conference designed especially with husbands in mind!
It doesn’t have to be a big or elaborate gift. In my case, the surprise was the best part!
You can learn how to be a giver in your relationship in our book, The Marriage Dance. Our book also makes a great gift!
This article first appeared on The Marriage Dance blog on December 17, 2015.