I can’t remember the day it started, or exactly how long it has been taking place, but it’s now difficult to remember a time it hasn’t happened. This mysterious event is the piping hot cup of green tea I always have waiting on me each morning – even when on vacation! How does this tea get there? Believe it, or not, my wife does this gracious deed and never speaks a word about it. However, the impact on me has been transformational and enlightening to say the least. I call it her T.E.A. power:
Tough Love: I don’t deserve this tea and haven’t earned it. Interestingly, even those times I have aggravated my wife the most, that tea is still waiting on me each morning. Nothing said. Nothing asked. Clearly, this makes it tough to hold onto any pride, or resentment towards her. In fact, I appreciate the fact she can deliver a good kick in the rump, when I need it, but still possess the love to deliver such a kind gesture as making me tea the very next day. Ironically, God loves us in much the same way. He cares enough to deliver tough love when necessary, but He never holds a grudge (Hebrews 3:13). Instead, He continues to pour His grace upon us each day.
Encouraging Love: Then of course, there are those days I’m tired, perhaps discouraged and simply feeling beaten down. We all get this way from time to time, but how nice it is to wake up and find that cup of tea waiting on me. I know someone is there who loves me, is thinking of me and is cheering for me, but better yet, praying for me (1 Thessalonians 5:11). Again, this is much like our loving Savior, who never kicks us when we’re down. Rather, He encourages us onward with His love, mercy and grace.
Attractive Love: Needless to say, how can anyone resist being attracted to someone who willingly, lovingly, generously and sincerely considers them each morning? This simple action, along with my deeper walk with God, has completely transformed my prayers for my wife (Matthew 5:16). I literally plead with God to help me love her as He designed her to be loved. To love her as He loves her. To love her sacrifically, as He has called me to. I possess a passion to love her righteously; and not because she brings me tea, but because I know, despite my imperfections, she loves me, prays for me, desires God’s best for me and believes in me. For there is so much said, without a word, through her actions and that tea.
Application: “Tipping Point” – Psalm 86:12-13
As I’ve shared many times, I have stumbled plenty in my role as a husband, and my marriage has not always been “peachy”. We have had our share of rough and rocky times over our sixteen years of marriage, but I can truly say, God rescued it. As soon as we placed Him first in our life and first in our marriage, He went to work in restoring and improving our life and marriage. His prioritization was the tipping point that changed everything. It was around this same time my wife’s “tea” ministry began. How can I repay God for such a gift? Only by praising Him continuously and loving her as He has called me to, each and everyday.