Don’t you enjoy a lovely fountain? It’s refreshing and enjoyable to watch. But did you ever think about marriage as a fountain—especially a living and active fountain that is refreshing rather than draining? We didn’t either until Debi Walter (from The Romantic Vineyard) pointed it out in an article, she wrote a while back. Actually, it’s first talked about in the Bible. As Debi wrote:
“Marriage has been compared to a fountain in Scripture. Listen to King Solomon’s counsel to his young son as recorded in Proverbs 15: ‘Drink water from your own cistern, flowing water from your own well. Should your springs be scattered abroad, streams of water in the streets? Let them be for yourself alone, and not for strangers with you. Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth, a lovely deer, a graceful doe.‘”
Of course, this fountain goes both ways for the husband and the wife. We should work to find ways to “bless” and “rejoice” our spouse amidst all that goes on in our married life together. Even through tough times we can make that our aim and work to eventually make it so. It’s important to be a fountain of refreshment rather than a drain that saps the life out of each other in our marriage.
The Mission of Refreshing Not Draining
To help you in this mission, we’ll be sharing “ways to KEEP FROM draining the life out of our marriage.” We all need these tips that Debi put together (and is allowing us to share with you).
To help you further we linked the main points with related articles (in case you want more info on that issue).
Please take the time to read each point slowly and intentionally. And prayerfully consider what God may be telling you to do (or stop doing). Try not to rush through them. Her words may be few, but they are rich in content. Here they are:
8 Ways to KEEP FROM Draining Life Out of Our Marriage
Deal With Past Hurts. Pretending you’re okay about a conflict just to keep the peace, is what Ken Sande calls a “Peace Faker”. You may keep the conflict quiet, but it certainly won’t go away. At some point the geyser will blow and your fountain will be high and dry.
Believe The Best of Your Spouse. When they tell you something, believe them; don’t second guess. If you don’t trust your spouse to tell you the truth, you have deeper issues that need attention. [And you need to work on that, if it is so.] We should, we must think the best or the waters of our marriage fountain will become polluted with suspicion and complaint.
Trust Your Spouse to Love You Completely. [That may be difficult for some of you. You may be in a “building” phase concerning this trust issue if your spouse has betrayed your trust in some way. But work with your spouse to try to rebuild it.] If we hold back emotionally, we are robbing our spouse of what we promised to give them on our wedding day. We must stay true to our vows, for it is our vows that holds the marriage together when the feelings wane. When our spouse expresses their affection embrace it, don’t question it. This keeps the water in your marriage fountain flowing both ways.
To Keep Refreshing Rather Than Draining Life
Intentionally Pursue Your Spouse. When you were dating no one had to tell you to pursue them, they were all you could think about! When we get married the need to do this increases, because if we don’t we will begin to drift apart. It’s like taking one side of the marriage fountain away and hoping all the water will stay in place.
Give Your Spouse Your Complete Attention. This one isn’t so hard before you have children, at least not as noticeable. The husband especially can feel pushed aside when the mothering instincts kick in. But if you purpose to look each other in the eyes when talking it will go a long way in preventing you from communicating on autopilot. And please, put those devices aside when your spouse is talking.
Study Your Spouse. As the years pass you will both change. It is necessary for you to continue to learn about who your spouse is becoming. If you don’t take care of this on a regular basis, you’ll wake up one day and say, “Who are you?” We’ve seen this happen far too many times. Know what is on your spouse’s mind and heart. Know what is worrying them. Know what they are dreaming about. This will keep the waters of your fountain clear and refreshing, not old and stagnant.
Stay Current with Your Spouse. Don’t assume on yesterday’s understandings. Take the time to talk about what’s important, including dreaming about the future together. This is the natural give and take found in a functioning fountain.
And Last, but Not Least
Touch Each Other Often. This may be a given in your relationship, but many couples stop showing affection as the years pass. Kiss often. Kiss long. Hold hands when walking. Put your arm around your wife as you walk the mall. Be physical. Intimacy isn’t just for the bedroom, it starts with a goodbye kiss in the morning, and a welcome embrace when you are together again at the end of the day.
How have you kept your fountain operating in the way it was created to function? Are there any of these that you have neglected in your own relationship? What can you do today to implement the needed changes?
The only way to stop a leak in a fountain is to fix it.”
Married Life Can be Draining in Itself
Sometimes we contribute to draining the life out of our marriage relationship; and sometimes life can just be draining in itself. But we want you to know that if the life is leaking out of your marriage—if you or your spouse is draining the life out of your marriage, we have a lot of insightful articles posted on the Marriage Missions web site that could help you. They could be good starting points for you to slow down and stop the drain.
In addition, as we pointed out previously, we have put a related link into each “Way” or point listed within this Insight to further help you (if you need it). We hope it helps.
Whatever you do, try to enjoy each other. Look for ways to bless, support, laugh with, and enjoy your spouse and your married life together. We hope and pray you will!
May you love the Lord your God with all of your heart, and may that love overflow onto your spouse in the ways you express it in visible ways. And as you do so: “May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you.” (Jude 1:2)
Cindy and Steve Wright
— ADDITIONALLY —
To help you further, we give a lot of personal stories, humor, and more practical tips in our book, 7 ESSENTIALS to Grow Your Marriage. We hope you will pick up a copy for yourself. (It’s available both electronically and in print form.) Plus, it can make a great gift for someone else. It gives you the opportunity to help them grow their marriage. And who doesn’t need that? Just click on the linked title or the picture below:
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