When was the last time you spent a weekend away with your mate? When was the last time you laughed, giggled and simply had a good time with him/her?
When I ask most couples this question, they look at me with that ‘deer in the headlight’ look.
“Well, uh, does going grocery shopping count?” one asks.
“Nope,” I say.
“How about going to church?” the other asks.
“Sounds very healthy,” I remark, “but I wouldn’t call it fun. When was the last time you had fun together?”
Again, most couples look blankly at each other and then offer a myriad excuses.
“We are too busy raising a family.”
“We both have jobs, and by the time we get home we’re too tired for fun.”
“Life is serious. We really can’t have fun.”
Does any of this sound familiar? Do you find yourselves preoccupied with ‘the tyranny of the urgent?’ You are so busy getting things done that you don’t slot in time simply for fun.
I really understand the problem. The urgent clamors for our attention. The routine tasks of life must get done. Most of us live in a world filled with obligation, chores and tasks that must get completed. We don’t have a maid and the children and home require our attention.
Yet, your marriage is important. It won’t tend to itself. If you don’t care for it, you will be sorry. If you don’t give it the attention it deserves—and fun is some of the gas that drives the engine of marriage—you will regret it one day.
These are sobering words meant to challenge you and shake you so that you sit back, reflect and consider how you can make time for you and your marriage.
God has many pieces of advice for us, ways to live godly lives that are pleasing to Him. Do you know that He cares about your marriage as well? Consider the words of Solomon: “He who finds a wife finds a good thing and obtains favor from the Lord.” (Proverbs 18:22)
Yes, finding a wife (or husband) is a good thing—but this is only the beginning. After finding a mate, you must tend to her/him.
Here are a few more thoughts for your consideration:
First, talk about play with your mate.
Don’t let play take a back seat to other activities in your home. Talk to your mate about how you will weave play into your lives. Then do it. Play.
Second, share ideas for play dates with each other.
As you sit and talk, remember the ways you had fun earlier in your relationship. Remember back to the times you enjoyed yourselves. Brainstorm ways you can take an hour or two, or an occasional weekend, for yourselves.
Third, turn off cell phones and attend to each other.
Again, whether this is for an hour, two hours or a weekend, give full attention to each other. Uninterrupted attention is pure gold and pure good for a marriage.
Fourth, celebrate each other.
Offer words of encouragement to each other. Take notice of something about your mate that you can positively affirm. Notice her smile when you compliment her on her hair, clothes or smile. Notice him beam when you remark about how playful he can be. Bring the joy back into your marriage one comment at a time.
Finally, Keep it going.
Let play become a natural habit. Weave it into your life’s routines so the kids know mom and dad will have an occasional night out. Keep that babysitter on retainer, so she knows you will need her services again in the future. Find the ‘off’ button to that cell phone and pay attention to each other.
Would you like more information on how to improve your relationships? Dr. Hawkins and his team are available to work with you via Phone, Skype or intensive counseling for you and/or your marriage. Please go to our website, www.marriagerecoverycenter.com and discover more information about this as well as the free downloadable eBook, A Love Life of Your Dreams, including other free videos and articles. Send responses to me at [email protected] and also read more about The Marriage Recovery Center on our website.