This week ends with Valentine’s Day on Saturday, and I wanted to share a couple of thoughts on relationships. You can see the marketing that goes on for a day such as this. Restaurants are booked, Victoria Secret’s stores are full, and floral delivery is at an all time high.
All of this comes and goes and we will no doubt repeat it all again next year! So, for me the question that arises in my heart concerns so much more than this focus we take on as a society over one day, but more along the lines of how we care for our relationship throughout the entire year. How do we create relationships with our spouse that are thriving examples of love, respect, and genuine concern for one another?
My husband and I will be celebrating our 20th Wedding Anniversary this year and I would like to share some of the ways that we have cared for and created awareness around our relationship throughout the years:
Be intentional in working on your marriage together.
A wedding is over in a day, but it takes prayer, love, and intentionality to have a marriage for a lifetime! Marriage is not easy and yes, it takes intentional effort for the husband and wife to listen so you may understand each other, forgive one another, understand the uniqueness of what you bring to the relationship, and pray for one another!
Questions to ask yourself:
- How could I demonstrate love to my spouse?
- How could I pray for my spouse?
- What is unique about my spouse?
- How could I encourage my spouse?
Keep your relationship exciting!
Change things up a bit. Don’t wait for your spouse to always plan something. Surprise them with something that is totally out of the norm. Have fun and play! That’s right ...learn to play again!
Questions to ask yourself:
- When was the last time we actually laughed together?
- When was the last time we made love together?
- When was the last time we did something fun?
- What does my spouse enjoy?
Keep your relationship a priority.
Your children are part of your universe- not the center of it! So, when you find that their lives come first in the pecking order of things in your home, then I’m here to tell you that something is out of alignment.
Remember, there comes a day when all parents will face the “empty-nest” stage of life. When that time comes, I hope you are not left staring at someone that you have lost connection with over the years, while all of your time was invested into your children.
I would say the same in regards to your job/career. Just consider the amount of time and energy you have devoted to create a career that you desire. Now imagine how your marriage would look different if you devoted that kind of time and energy to your spouse?
Understand what you need from each other.
Men desire respect and women desire love. So, be intentional to find out what that looks like in your relationship. If you don’t know, ask each other!
Questions that you could ask yourself:
- Do I put my spouse down in front of others?
- Do I compare my spouse to others?
- What is my spouse’s love language?
- What triggers me to disrespect or withhold love from my spouse?
Spend quality time with each other.
Time is the most expensive commodity out there and so spending time with your spouse is so important. Remember, it is not the quantity of time, but the quality. Again, ask your spouse what that might be, because it looks different for each person.
Be accountable to someone you both respect in regards to your relationship.
This allows you to grow and become stronger as a couple. The benefit is not only for you but also for your children. As you display a healthy marriage, it encourages your children to see what that might look like and bring it into their lives, as well.
I could go on with this list, but I will stop here. I’m wondering what you might add to this list? As with anything in our lives, we can live by just getting by or we can learn to thrive. Here is what I want to challenge you with: Learn to thrive in your relationships!
Oh and for those who are single….
I know there are those who are not married reading my blogs, and to you I say, “Don’t settle!” Wait for God’s best for you and thrive in your singleness now!
Tell me in the comments, what is your best tip to keep your marriage relationship thriving in the moments of life?
THRIVE in your moments,