The 5 Love Languages
Just rebuilding some old threads. This is one of the lessons from the Men's Fraternity
study, Winning at Work and Home
. It is a bible study that the men's group at my church is going through and it thought it was a really great lesson on love.
Much of this information is based on the book The Five Love Languages
by Gary Chapman; but this lesson's main focus is on how a man should love his wife.
I want to recommend where I got this from. I got it from the best selling book by Gary Chapman. It is called The Five Love Languages. It is available to you in the book store today. He details what I will offer you in the next few moments in summary form. You can benefit by these summaries that I will give you.
Every person has a primary love language. An All-Star man knows what his wife's love language is and he knows the specific ways to speak that love language. He is absolutely clear. That is why he wins with his woman. So what are the five love languages?
- Words of affirmation
- Quality time
- Receiving gifts
- Acts of service
- Physical touch
Every one of your women has one dominant love language. We like all of those but I will tell you that every one of your women have one dominant love language that they are drawn to. It does not take a psychologist, sociologist, or rocket scientist to present these to your woman. You can sit down and just read those five things to your woman and she can tell you almost immediately which one is hers. These are so simple. They are such practical, good, hands-on tools, but she can tell you which one is hers.
When you love her in the way she tells you she likes to be loved, you are going to meet her #1 need that we talked about last week. Do you remember what the #1 need is of woman? AFFECTION. When you speak her love language and she receives what she wants to receive, that fills up her love tank the way she wants it to be filled up. She will feel that she has received the right kind of affection from you and you have met her #1 need. She will be wild about you because of how you are meeting the needs in her.
I want to walk briefly through these five, so you get a little better handle on what they mean.
1. Words of affirmation: Let's look at words of affirmation. These are positive words that come out of the gut. They are not forced. They are not fake. They are the things you would say out of the gut with passion that would build up, cheer up, and lift up your wife. For some women, there is no greater expression of love that she would ever want from you than a word of affirmation. It could be anything from a compliment when you would say, "You know, you are a wonderful mother." Say that from the gut. Or a character statement, "You are one of the kindest people I have ever met. In fact, I think you are the kindest person I have ever met." It could be praise. She walks down the stairs and you say, "Man, you look gorgeous today!" Or it could be some word of endearment like this, "You know you make coming home the best part of the day. You really do."
For some women, my wife is one of these, she has told me on many occasions that these words of relational affirmation are the most important thing in her life. When she hears that, that is the moment - whether you feel it or not - when she really feels love. Some women call it "the sex before sex."
2. Quality time: I mean undivided attention time. That is what it means. You look into your wife's eyes or share a moment or a trip or something you are doing today where you experience the moment and connected as a man and a woman together, experiencing life. It could be anything from regular time alone where you have a weekly date night to playing together or a common recreation where you like to ride horses, run together, or hunt and fish together or ride motorcycles.
It would be something where you are sharing life together - TOGETHER is the key word. It may be getting away or some travel experience together, but you are personally connecting with one another. For some women, when they are on a date night with you, because this is their primary love language and you are talking and sharing your heart with her - at that moment she feels the greatest volume of love ever. Nothing competes with quality time.
3. A third is receiving gifts. Gifts are a visual symbol of love. For some women receiving a gift is THE SYMBOL of love. To get a gift, big or small, is when this particular woman feels the most loved. The size or expense of the gift is not the issue. It is rarely very important - how big it is, how expensive it is, how important it is. It is the fact that it is a gift and you put some thought into it. The more thought and creativity you put into a big or little gift is what delivers the message of love to a woman who has this as her primary love language.
One guy really hit a home run when his wife had a car accident. She opened the glove compartment to get the insurance card and when she pulled the insurance card out, paper clipped to it was a note that he had put there months earlier and the not said, "Don't worry about it. It's you I love, not the car." He figured our his wife's love language. Let me tell you, did that pay off that night? I'll guarantee you it did!
4. There are acts of service. A lot of women - in fact the greater percentage of women represented by men in this room - feel really loved by a man when he willingly serves her in some small or big way that is really important to her. Let's take the Melancholy. The Melancholy is real neat and tidy and likes things in order. For the Melancholy personality, the husband who picks up his things, cleans up after himself and does acts of service, that husband is speaking her love language. If he says, "Let me help you tidy up the house, let me wash the dishes after supper" and does those kinds of things to her, it speaks into her personality and also speaks into her love language. When he does that for her, he is driving her crazy, wild - about him! He is not even aware of how much that means, but he says, "I love you, I care about you" through these small acts of service. That is what I mean by primary love language.
5. Finally, physical touch. Some women are contact people. They love being touched. Write this phrase down - "All touches are not equal." For a woman whose love language is physical touch, there are certain touches that fill up her love tank and other touches that don't. She may be a person who just loves the touch of a hug. Maybe it is cuddling together. Maybe it is a back rub or rubbing her feet or something like that. She can tell you what it is. But not all touches are equal, but there are some that really mean a lot to her. Like I said, it may be a hug or a kiss or it may be sexual intercourse... and if you are one of those lucky men, then I don't want to hear about it.
So how do you know what is her love language?
Let me give you three helpful clues as we conclude. To discover anyone's love languages, because you have one as well. Here is clue #1:
1. You like to express love this way to your mate. Another way of saying it is - we love others the way we want to be loved. If you wife is always giving you words of encouragement - she is giving you a clue that he love language is words of affirmation. See that? She may be missing your love language but she is always going around and doing little acts of service for you, she is probably telling you that he love language is acts of service.
2. A second clue is this. You ask for this love from your mate. You will hear her ask this from you from time to time. Some guys hear that when there is trouble. You may be doing everything right in your relationship with your woman, but if your woman is constantly saying, "You never talk to me." You may be doing everything else right, but you are not giving her the love language she most wants. And what is that if you are not talking to her? QUALITY TIME. She is starving for quality time. You may be hugging her and giving her gifts and taking her on trips but if you are not giving her quality time, she is shriveling as a woman. She is starving to death and she doesn't feel loved. "Talk to me, spend time with me" and you can excuse that by all the other good things you are doing. But I want you to know - you are hurting her. You are not loving her the way she was designed to be loved. That is a clue.
3. A third clue is this. You are deeply hurt when your mate gives you the opposite of this. In fact, nothing hurts more than when you give your woman the opposite of her love language. Let's say her love language is receiving gifts and now it is your big 20th anniversary and you forget it. You have just hurt her to the core because you overlooked what was most important to her. Maybe it is physical touch that she craves, but every day you walk out the door to work, already focused on your TO DO LIST and you never give her a hug or a kiss and that is what she craves - just a little, appropriate touch. Those are the clues. When you get really deeply hurt at the deepest point of pain in a relationship, it is usually the missing of a love language.