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Keeping Your Marriage Fresh
My husband and I are off to speak at a marriage conference all day. I love speaking with him; it reminds me what a great man I married.

But I don't think our marriage succeeded because I married a great man; I think it succeeded because everyday we chose to love each other. Happy marriages begin when we marry the one we love; they endure when we love the one we marry.

We often start the conference by saying that we've been married for 19 years, and happily married for 15. I don't think anyone seeing us at 2 years in would have said that we'd be this happy when we hit 40. But we made decisions along the way to grow together.

If you ever have the opportunity to go to a marriage conference, do it. They're great fun, most of them, and it does get you talking about important things.

But here's what I've noticed: the natural tendency is for marriages to grow apart. It's like gravity. It's not that you mean to; it's just that one day he comes home and he's tired so he collapses in front of the computer and eats dinner there, instead of talking to her.

She has a baby, and she's so wrapped up in the baby she can't do anything without that baby tagging along.

And it's not that you've ever planned it; it's just that you've grown apart.

We've spent a lot of time on this blog this week talking about how thoroughly messed up marriages can get because of pornography. We've looked at what happens when men get into pornography, but in the comments many have brought up the subject of women and pornography, and how to stop that. I have lots to say on this subject, too, and I'll talk about it next week when I can do it justice. For now, let me just say that the motivation is often different, but the result just as bad.

Marriages will naturally grow apart unless you make the effort to make you grow together. Do little things, like making sure that you talk 10 minutes a day to really catch up. Find out what little things make him feel loved, and then do a few of them a day. Think about what you're grateful for, instead of what bugs you.

Pray for him, that God will have His way in your husband's life.

Little things, but they add up. It's little things that pull us apart, and eventually add up to big things. And similarly, it's little things that can make us grow together.

So what are the little things you are doing to grow fences around your marriage, to protect it from falling apart? Leave a comment to encourage others and point us in the right direction!

And pray for us, that we may have the words to say to couples who are hurting.

Have a great weekend!

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6 Comments:

At 4:02 PM , Blogger Kela said…

Taking time for the small stuff will make a great impact on the big stuff. Thanks for the reminder to commit to daily (positive)communication...it's vital!

 

At 8:09 PM , Blogger sarahe said…

my parents (who also do marriage counseling) say about the same thing "we've been married for 30 years. yep, 25 wonderful years."

I try to write lists of things that I appreciate about my husbands in my journal--then go back and look at them when i'm upset. we also set aside at least 20 minutes before we go to sleep each night to just talk.

 

At 9:26 PM , Blogger Kelli said…

We always schedule 'date nights' at least every other week. Every night, we make sure our kids are in bed by 8:00 and then it's our time to be alone and catch up on the day together (in quiet).

 

At 11:58 PM , Blogger Shana said…

This is something that we need to do in our marriage. We have been together 16years this year and married for 10 years this year. That is a long time considering that I am 32. We met the day after I turned 17. We struggled with infertility for 12 years and finally had a precious miracle boy in August 07. We would take nothing in the world for him and he is the most precious thing. BUT, as close as we were and as badly as we wanted a baby and as hard as we worked to have one it still brought so much stress to our marriage. It has been so rocky since Blaze was born and there have been some major fights (nothing physical) with one or the other of us leaving for a few days. We have said the d word which is something that both of us have always said was not an option. WE have missed out on so much church because of Blaze being sick so much but have re vowed to get back in full time starting tomorrow because it really helps us when we are going faithfully. Our pastor has told us he would be happy to counsel with us and we are most likely going to do that. Anyway i just think this post hit me because we never have time to just us. We have never had one night without Blaze and he is 2.5 years old. I am home 24/7 with him and have never spent more than 4-5 hours away from him. I need a break and I try to explain this but he thinks because I dont have a "job" that I don't really need a break. What can you do to make them see? I love him and he loves me but it is like we have nothing in common anymore. Sorry for the book here in your comments...lol.

 

At 9:12 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said…

My husband and I have been together almost 29years, married for 27 1/2, and truly in love and content and passionate about each other for 18 years. 18 years ago we both became believers and left our marriage in God's hands. What helps us protect our marriage is a daily choice that we will honour and love each other, respect each other, talk to each other, pray together and keep God the focus of our life and what we do in our life. We do better some days than others but this is our priority. We learned to obey the commitment we made to each other, to the Lord and to our families that we would love, cherish and obey when we got married.The first almost 10 years we weren't really doing that, but Praise God He has changed us. We have gotten help from friends along the way who encouraged us with advice, baby sitting so we could be alone, and taken marriage classes. We also just really enjoy being together and having fun together. We do quiet things like play games, enjoy a show together, go kayaking, long walks, coffee dates and serve at our church together. Shana I want to encourage you to reach out to someone who you could swap baby sitting with so you can have free time. Your right, its important.

 

At 11:25 AM , Anonymous Huz said…

Great job Sheila. Married 35 years this summer, to my high school sweetheart. I appreciate your heart for marriage and plan to keep up with your work. Keep up the good work. God bless.

 
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About Me

Name: Sheila

Home: Belleville, Ontario, Canada

About Me: I'm a Christian author of a bunch of books, and a frequent speaker to women's groups and marriage conferences. Best of all, I love homeschooling my daughters, Rebecca and Katie. And I love to knit. Preferably simultaneously.

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