“Love and faithfulness meet together; righteousness and peace kiss each other.” Psalms 85:10
I remember vividly a moment a few months ago where I knew that my marriage had been coasting for years. It hit me hard that we were raising four incredible children, we enjoyed each other’s company well enough, and we got along and hardly ever fought, but I could also crack down on my to-do list and not really notice my husband most days. I felt very defeated and restless. We weren’t encouraging one another, we weren’t challenging one another; and why wasn’t I fighting harder for my marriage?!
Dear mamas, have you allowed your marriage to become like mine? When this mountain of realization crept up on me I started reading the Scriptures and committed myself to commitment again. I wanted a marriage that was not only mildly healthy, but I wanted the marriage that God had intended when he created the amazing gift of matrimony. My husband and I both yearned for a deeper level of intimacy and connection, but God’s promises for us were harder to achieve than we realized. We were in the trenches of parenthood and life was full of busyness and stress. Our marriage had slipped tremendously and we had allowed it to happen.
Over the next few months, my husband and I embraced the promise that God didn’t just create marriage to be a pleasant relationship that produces children. He created the union of marriage to forge two sinners together to sharpen, love, support, respect, and challenge the other, for a lifetime. This love is a serious commitment and takes great faith! We knew and now know with all certainty that God puts everything back together the way He always intends for it to be. He longs to restore harmony, love, faithfulness, righteousness, and peace into every marriage that was formed in Him. “With all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:2-3 (ESV)
“There is no more lovely, friendly or charming relationship, communion or company, than a good marriage.” Martin Luther
The path to a stronger and more intimate marriage involved lots of minor steps and adjustments for us. We started small and here were a few of our changes:
- Commit to spending 20-30 minutes together nightly to talk and connect. No TV allowed! And no talking about logistics and schedule. Share something from your heart.
- What are areas where both spouses can improve and make a better effort? There is no way restoration can happen without each person admitting their weaknesses. And no defensive behavior is allowed!
- We each thought of one way where we could completely serve the other. We didn’t receive anything back. Simply loved and cared for one another in a tangible way. P.S. I made time to help organize and clean out my husband’s home office!