Don't let that title scare you away, my marriage is anything BUT perfect. By "sacred" I do not mean perfect. After ten years of marriage, I have found that marriage isn't what I thought it was at first - and that's ok. God's plan for marriage is so much better. I've done some reflecting over the past few days because on August 6, 2015 my husband and I will celebrate 10 years of marriage. In honor of that, I want to first share 10 ways to love your husband. 1. A special treat. Yep, it never gets old, even after ten years, to make him something yummy to eat! 2. Turn off your phone. I am guilty of sitting next to him on the couch, but not really sitting there. Do you know what I mean? Turn off your phone, close your laptop, and take your eyes off of the screen. Just talk. Talk about his day. Talk about your day. Be with him. 3. Welcome him home with a hug and kiss. My husband and I have this thing that even though the kids run to him as soon as he gets home, mommy gets the first kiss. Show him that he is the priority - even over the kids. 4. Go out. Get out of the house and DO something, without your kids! Those date nights are VITAL to your relationship. My husband and I try to go out twice a month on a date. It is an investment for sure to get a babysitter - but maybe skip the Starbucks once or twice. Your husband is worth it. 5. Stay In. Plan a special date night in the house. Bake something special. Pop some popcorn. Rent a movie. Pull out a board game. We love playing Scrabble. Just the two of us. Such a fun game - and we never laugh so hard at all of the crazy words we can come up with together! 6. Listen. Nothing more. Just listen to him. 7. Make a "Love Jar" - check out the original idea here. 8. Hide "I Love You's" around the house. With post-its,or be creative! 9. Do something that is his "job." My husband usually does the sweeping and mopping and I usually do the laundry. I've found that he is so thankful when I do his "job" so he is free to have some extra time to himself. 10. Pray with him. I find that one of the times I feel the closest to my husband is when we pray together. Even if it is a quick prayer at the end of the day as you lay in bed together. Before rolling over, roll together and lift your voice to God to ask His blessing and help for your family - your marriage - and your individual lives. Realize that you two are in this thing TOGETHER. One of the books I read at the beginning of our marriage (and will continue to read as the years go by) is Gary Thomas' book: Sacred Marriage: What if God Designed Marriage to Make Us Holy More Than to Make Us Happy. I know, a long subtitle. Isn't that a counter-culture thinking statement, though? Isn't marriage supposed to make us happy? That's what a lot of single men and women think. But marriage can't make us happy. Whether you have been married 10 days or 10 years, you won't find that marriage (or your husband) is your ultimate source of happiness. Only God Himself is designed to feed our souls and give us joy. Marriage can be full of happy moments - as it should be. But our ultimate source of happiness can't be in our marriage. What do we do when the struggles begin? What do we do we do when we fight. Yes - fight. All married couples fight. All married couples disagree, have discussions, argue, disagree - whatever word you want to use. Those who tell you they don't fight are either not being honest with their spouse or are not being honest with you. Marriage is a mirror. Not only a full-length mirror. It is one of those department store mirros that go from the ceiling to the floor and are light with the fluorescent lights showing ALL OF THOSE FLAWS. You can't get away from that fact that you are TWO DIFFERENT PEOPLE. And you will face conflict. No getting around it. Take heart, dear wife. If you are struggling in your marriage, let me encourage you with two things: 1. You are not alone. All couples struggle. 2. God has a plan for these struggles. Of of the purposes behind the struggles is to make you more like Him. In the book, Sacred Marriage, the author says that the hard things with marriage can be used to make us holy. Marriage changes us - and it can be a beautiful thing. My husband has pushed an pulled me and through conflict and differences, I've seen so many things grow in my heart. One is compassion. His heart for others and willingness to do anything and everything for anyone is inspiring. I find myself more giving when it comes to my time and resources. Another way I've seen myself change is my adventuring spirit. I am very much a "home-body." I like to be alone and don't mind the quiet. My husband loves to be out doing things - with people. I find that I also have a desire to meet new people and try new things after being married to him. Because mariage is going to change you - find out how it can change you to be more like Christ in the book Sacred Marriage. Thank you for reading. Follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest!