Is it truly, the thought that counts?
My mom and I were out and about yesterday and talked a lot about family, marriage, and thinking versus doing. I love my mother so much. She is kind, generous, wise, and constantly striving to do what God wants her to do. I want to be more like her.
One thing she mentioned that struck me was, is it really the thought that counts. Think about that for a moment. Is is truly the thought that counts? Does the thought really even matter much?
People use this term all the time. Almost like an excuse, a crutch. I thought about calling you and wishing you a Happy Birthday, but I didn't. I thought about giving money to a charity during this holiday season, but didn't. I thought about apologizing to my husband for saying something disrespectful, but didn't. Because it is the thought that counts. Right?
Honestly. For me. It is not the thought that counts. Your thoughts really don't mean much to me. I can't hear them. They don't benefit me or anyone else in any way really.
I firmly believe that it is our actions that count. Absolutely. No question. Actions speak louder than our thoughts. Those people in our lives can actually know a glimpse of what we are thinking through our actions. Far be it from me to be an expert on this topic. I am just sharing my personal opinion with you.
I don't know about you, but I have trouble keepng my own thoughts in order most of the time. I am amazed and will whole heartedly admit, that the thoughts running through my head are not always pleasant or even remotely nice. And yes, I have said to myself, what are you thinking? Especially a few years ago when I was a single mother raising three children without a husband. The thoughts in my head would drive me bonkers. Thoughts, paired with feelings, of lonliness, rejection, hatred, shamefulness, embarrassment. Those were not constant thoughts, but they did exist. I have learned a lot and overcome much over the past few years and have found that what you surround yourself with plays a big part on the thoughts in your head. I now surround myself with my wonderful husband and four amazing children, an extended family and friends who are good people. My family and friends share similiar thoughts on priorities and values. We support one another and seek Godly advice to give each other. We pray for one another.
This year alone, I have known a few couples(mine included) who have been in a struggling marriage. Some have already ended in divorce, others are separated. Others are hanging on for dear life and seeking counseling. It saddens me. I hate it. I hate divorce. My parents have been married for 33 years so I do not speak from personal experience. But I strongly believe that when you stand before God and your family and friends you take a vow, which is larger that a promise, to stand by your spouse for better and for worse. Yes I said it. Even if your spouse has done hateful and horrible things or said spiteful and hurtful words, over and over and over again, I believe you do what is right, and fight. Fight to save your marriage and become the partner God says to be. You made that vow to God, and it is yours to uphold. For better and for worse. Right? By the way, you can't pick and choose what you think is worthy of being considered worse. Meaning, when is it alright to say I've had enough and decide to divorce. For example, believing that because your spouse always spends your hard earned money and doesn't keep the house in order, or becuase your spouse doesn't show you respect or take care of you. Or even if your spouse goes so far as to stray. What if your spouse struggles with an emotional disorder or becomes handicap in some fashion? Is it ok then to decide to divorce them? What are your thoughts?
Actions. Yes actions, are what counts. Through our actions we are able to show love, support, commitment, understanding, generousity, joy, and simple kindness. I can tell my husband twenty times a day that I love him. But it is my actions towards him that truly let him know and backup my thoughts and words. The way I speak to him, asking him how his day was when he comes home from work, offering to get him a drink or fixing him his favorite meal. We can show others that we care as well. Support a cause, buy a product, send a note, or simply pick up the phone more often. Nothing extravangant is required. As humans, we want to be shown that the people in our lives love us, and care for us, and will remain by our side through thick and thin. I know I want that. And I am shown everyday by the many people in my life that I am loved, understood, supported, and thought about. I am truly blessed.
I bet if you were to start acting more than thinking, you would see the same in return. Perhaps not at first, but you will. So go ahead. Start today. Use your actions to exemplify your thoughts of laughter, joy, love, understanding, and kindness.
Let me know what happens.