I have recently restarted working my way through The Love Dare by Stephen and Alex Kendrick. This is a devotional book that is centered around becoming a better spouse and learning to lead your heart to unconditional love. The book is a 40 day challenge that discusses a different aspect of love, presents a specific dare and provides questions to reflect on each day. A few days ago, one of the themes really struck a chord with me and has been on my heart ever since.
The theme for that day was "Love Believes the Best". The writing was focused on seeking out the positive in your spouse rather than constantly focusing on his flaws. In this chapter, the authors presented an analogy that was very meaningful to me. They discuss two rooms that are housed in our hearts: the Appreciation Room and the Depreciation Room. The appreciation room is where we store all of the positive and encouraging aspects that we love about our spouse. Alternately, we also have a depreciation room, where we harbor negativity, irritations and flaws.
While discussing these two rooms, the authors challenge us to reflect on these rooms and to think about where we spend most of our time. Do we spend the majority of our time in the Appreciation Room, building our spouses up and encouraging them to succeed? Or do we spend more time in the Depreciation Room, criticizing our spouses and bringing them down?
In the chapter, the authors suggest that the only time we should enter the Depreciation Room is to write "COVERED IN LOVE" across the walls, over top of the negative thoughts and to pray for our spouse and for our marriage. This image makes me think of Jesus - and how he has written these very words - "COVERED WITH LOVE" - over top of all of our sins and shortcomings.
I have been reflecting on this a great deal - gazing into my own heart and my own thoughts to determine which room I live in most often. Unfortunately, I know that I spend far too much time in the Depreciation Room and not enough time in the Appreciation Room. But I don't want to. I want to dwell in the Appreciation room because I know that is where Jesus lives.
Whether it be with your spouse, your children, your parents, your friends or your coworkers, what room do you live in? The Appreciation Room or the Depreciation Room? Have you written "COVERED IN LOVE" in the Depreciation Room?