Husbands, give the gift of yourself to your wife this Christmas

Family matters
Deacon Tony Zimmerman is the lead archdiocesan consultant for the office of marriage and family life.

by Deacon Tony Zimmerman

At a dinner theater performance I recently attended, the question suggested by a relative to a woman as to whether or not she should marry a certain man was: “Does he make you happy?” Her answer was: “Yes.” The relative responded with: “OK, then marry him.”

That’s a fair question, isn’t it? No one marries another to be unhappy! Yet, something is amiss here. Is my happiness what marriage is all about?

Loving another means that we should be more concerned about their happiness and what brings joy to their life. (Wives don’t peek; this next section is for your husband).

To all husbands: What might bring happiness and joy to your wife? At this time of year when we are challenged to find that perfect gift for her for Christmas, I have a shocking suggestion: That perfect gift is you.

Are you shocked? Can it be that simple? One man shared his shock when his wife told him that she didn’t ask him to come shopping with her as a form of torture.

She shared that even the simple, everyday things of life become special when she shares them with him. Obviously, that little time spent together was just a start.

The perfect gift for her is the gift of your time: just to be with her to share hopes and dreams. Gift wrap that time in a marriage enrichment experience you can share together.

It might mean a weekend getaway retreat, like a Worldwide Marriage Encounter. (Millions of couples worldwide have experienced this gift.)

Another such gift is the “Living in Love” marriage enrichment. (Over 700 couples in the archdiocese have attended over the past four years.)

Another possibility is the “Everyday in Love” enrichment which is given over the course of four Saturday mornings, three hours each session. (You can go to one or all sessions; 80 couples attended in October.)

Perhaps your parish is offering “The Choice Wine: Seven Steps to a Superabundant Marriage.” There is even an online retreat that you can experience together at home based on Pope Francis’ “The Joy of Love.”

Check out the website  or go to the Facebook site. Here you will find suggestions and information for registration.

All of these ideas, the website and the Facebook page are there to help you find the gift she wants: time with you about the two of you!

Wives, this column is meant for you, too. So, go ahead and read this whole column. If necessary, sneak it into his lunch box or lay it on his pillow. You can even invite him to spend time just with you. Tell him how much this will mean.

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