May 6, 2010

The 5 Love Languages - Acts of Service

Any Mom can relate to this love language.  Serving.  We perform acts of service 24/7 for our families because we love them.

But if this is your primary love language, its meaning goes a lot deeper.  You feel a deep connection to your spouse when he helps you with all those mundane chores:  washing the car, helping with bath time, clearing the table after dinner, walking the dog, making repairs around the house.

Jesus performed a fantastic act of service when he washed the feet of His disciples in the book of John.  It was not his place to perform this lowly task, but to show how much he loved them and how much he wanted to put them first, he did this act of love for them.

Unfortunately, someone who has this love language has the potential to serve her mate in this way for her entire life, sometimes without any notice or appreciation.  This can be dangerous, as it may become a lifelong grudge against her family, because she feels no one has noticed her years of service.  This is why it is so important to know each others love languages.  They must be reciprocated in order to be truly appreciated.

Sometimes you will need to overcome the traditional thinking of roles of husband and wife.  Especially if a wife has this love language.  Her husband may need to do some things that he is not accustomed to in order to serve her with this language.  Some chores that she may really need help with may not be his strong suit, but it will be important to learn to serve in ways areas that she needs help.

This is another area where communication is key.  If either of you have this language, talk about it, make a list of things that your spouse could help with that would really make a huge difference to you.  Follow through is very important.  This is a life-long language that you will need to get accustomed to.

Real Life

My love language is not acts of service, but my husband is great at this!  It is important to note that just because this may not be your primary love language, it doesn't mean that you are not going to appreciate and feel loved by someone serving you in this way.  The 5 Love Languages all work hand in hand to create a great symphony of acts of love.  Husband is great at clearing the table, doing dishes, he does ALL the laundry, mowing the grass, etc.  He is very hands on in our home, and I am so appreciative of that.

Here's what he had to say about Acts of Service today:

Acts of Service is one of those languages that is very easy for me to communicate but one that doesn’t mean much for me. This is the one I saw the most in my own family while growing up. Both my mother and father excelled at seeing needs and working to fill them. Through Boy Scouts and Church Youth Group, I got a lot of practice at serving others and really enjoy having the ability to help someone out in small or big ways.

In any marriage, there will always be opportunities to serve. Chores to be done. Kids that need someone to sit with them as they practice piano or do homework. A snack to be fetched. A dish to be washed. We have found that serving with the wrong motives causes me at times to keep score in my mind of how many things I’ve done and that after so many things done, I deserve a break, I deserve to be served. But this keeping score certainly sucks all the love out the serving. There is nothing that undoes all the good of serving like demanding reciprocity or even acknowledgement of the acts of service. You just need to believe that God above sees you and that is enough.

I’ll leave you with one my favorite quotes by John Wesley:
“Do all the good you can,
by all the means you can, 
in all the ways you can, 
in all the places you can, 
at all the times you can, 
to all the people you can, 
as long as ever you can.”

Thanks again, Husband, for providing us with great insights!


Join us tomorrow as we tackled the last love language, physical touch.


  1. Thanks for this post. One of my love languages is acts of service and I love when Sinisa helps me out around the house and with the boys. It makes me feel loved :)

  2. Layton Family JoyMay 6, 2010 at 1:17 PM

    you are doing great with this series! My husband's love language is AofS - mine is WofA - I talk he works - doesn't make for good when I'm not working and he's not talking! We're slowing learning the hard way how we need to cater to each other's love language rather than expect our own to work for the other person. I can praise him til I'm blue in the face, but it will never fill him the way acts do!

    I can not encourage this book to couples enough!


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