You take care of everything and everyone else, but do you take care of your marriage relationship? Do you connect with your spouse everyday? You were intentional in connecting together in conversation, spending time together, and such before marriage. If you hadn’t, you probably wouldn’t be married today.
But now that you ARE married, are you doing what it takes to GROW your relationship in a positive direction? Or are you allowing everything and everyone else to smash into your everyday lives? Are other things, people and activities pushing you both farther and farther away from each other?
Tyranny of the Urgent
If you’re anything like us, (and many couples we know) you find it’s easy to allow the tyranny of the urgent —that which appears to yell for our attention, eat up our time. And before we know it, the day flies right by and it’s time to flop into bed!
If we’re not careful, though, our marriage can suffer BIG time if it doesn’t get the attention that is needed! So here are a few tips we’ve used and still use, to help us to connect daily, so we’re more than just roommates:
Tip #1: Start the day praying with each other and for each other.
We rarely miss a day (even if we’re in different parts of the country) to pray together (even if it’s over the phone). For us, it works best to start our day together in prayer. For some couples, this is how they end their day. It doesn’t have to be a long time that you invest (or it can be). We kind of go with the flow of the day whether or not we have a longer prayer time together.
But in our 45+ years marriage, we believe that having that connection time in prayer with each other and with God, is vital to the health of our relationship. It starts the day off in a GREAT way!
Tip #2: Don’t forget to kiss.
We embrace and kiss each other every morning after praying. Again, it’s another GREAT way to start the day.
If you have the time, try the ten second kiss. It’s something we heard David and Claudia Arp talk about in one of their marriage seminars. They encourage couples to:
“Practice the ten-second kiss rule. In the morning, before saying goodbye, and in the evening, when saying hello, [when you can] kiss for ten seconds.”
It may seem a bit much at first to “plan” a kiss like this, or just to throw one in every once in a while when you can. But what we’ve found is that as you get into the moment your whole attitude changes for the better as you make a point of enjoying smooching with your sweetheart. Try it. It always brings a smile to our faces and to our hearts when we do. Hopefully, it will do the same for you.
Tip #3: Try to connect in some small way during the day.
It can be through a phone call, an email, text, a note tucked somewhere so they can find it. Also, it can be through meeting for lunch, or whatever you can do to let your spouse know that he or she is important to you —it’s all good. (And try to be an encourager when you do make that contact.)
Tip #4: When you’re able to eat together (breakfast, lunch, and/or dinner), pray together.
Ask God’s blessing for the meal. And hold hands while you’re doing this, as a married couple and as a family. It can make you feel closer emotionally, and physically, as well as spiritually closer to God.
Tip #5: Ask each other a couple of “Connection Questions” at some point in the evening.
It can be during a “22 minute date time” or while eating dinner, or at some point in the evening. Maybe it can even happen before going to bed. But be intentional in talking to each other, finding out about each other’s day. Here are the questions we ask:
• Did anything positive or exciting happen to you today?
•• Did anything sad or disappointing happen to you today?
••• What did God show you NEW today?
I have these typed out, put in a little frame, waiting at our kitchen table for us. It’s a great reminder (and has also been a point of conversation for others, who visit our home) to catch up with each other on what the day’s experiences have been for us. This gives us the opportunity to encourage each other, rejoicing together, sympathize with each other, learn from each other and from God, and connect in an important way as husband and wife.
Praying together, a simple kiss (or more), some type of contact during the day in some way, and asking simple questions …they can sure make a great difference as you put intentionality in physically, emotionally, and spiritually connecting at different times of the day.
Now, of course, this isn’t all we do to grow our marriage… continuing to date each other, encourage each other, talk together, minister to others together in various ways, enjoy family, friendships and church and other activities together are all important too. But the tips listed above sure do help us to grow together, rather than growing apart as a couple who are committed to reveal and reflect the love of Christ within our marriage.
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.” (1 John 4:7)
— ALSO —
Here are a few ways that the Rosberg’s are able to connect daily:
Cindy Wright of Marriage Missions International wrote this blog.