Marriage Maintenance 101…STOP TRYING?!?
How many of us have good intentions when it comes to our marriages?
- We try to go on dates…
- We try to have time to connect…
- We try to communicate in a healthy way…
- We periodically attend a marriage enrichment event and try to remember what we learned…
- We read a cool marriage tip and try to use it in our relationship…
We TRY all these things but eventually all these attempted TRIES…these GOOD INTENTIONS…fall by the wayside and we can find ourselves drifting apart instead of growing together.
How do we have a thriving, not just surviving, marriage?
What do you mean stop trying, you may ask?
Stop trying and instead be proactive and purposeful in prioritizing your marriage relationship.
When we are PROACTIVE in our marriage, we are purposeful in prioritizing our marriage…time, sacrifice and energy are given in order to grow our marriage
Here are some of our MARRIAGE MAINTENANCE KEYS in “Purposely Giving Marriage Matters Priority Because Marriage Matters…YOUR MARRIAGE MATTERS”.
#1 PRIORITIZE TIME
PROACTIVELY schedule a Marriage Maintenance weekly check-in where as a couple you purposefully, prioritize Communication Time, 1-2 times a week to “check in”, where you communicate beyond the surface communication:
- Coordinate schedules.
- Check in with each other’s hearts.
- Talk about areas in your marriage you would like to strengthen along with brainstorming how you will do this?
- Establish actions steps as a team and hold yourselves accountable to the action steps.
- No cell phones, no interruptions, 30-60 minutes.
- This weekly check-in is a marriage team meeting to praise the positive areas in your relationship, establish your playbook for areas you would like to strengthen, and determine strategies to grow your relationship.
PROACTIVELY plan dates…we schedule things that are important to us.
- Plan date nights, date days, date mornings…whatever works for your schedule. The key is getting time together, just the two of you, on your schedules and then scheduling around your established time together.
#2 PRIORITIZE ENRICHMENT
PROACTIVELY cultivate learning, nurturing, strengthening and growing your relationship.
- Read at least one marriage enrichment book a year TOGETHER. Check out our YouTube Video for a list of recommendations.
- Take a Marriage Enrichment Class. Check out our EVENTS page with our upcoming classes.
- Marriage Enrichment Getaways and Enrichment Opportunity Resources:
- Marriage Maintenance Ministry
- Family Life Today
- Ron Deal
- XO Marriage
- Les and Leslie Parrot
- The Marriage Hub (Elizabethtown, PA)
- Sparrow Ministry (Timonium, MD)
- True Love Dates ( Lancaster, PA)
- Authentic Intimacy
- Fierce Marriage
- Jay & Laura Laffoon
- Focus on the Family
- There’s a difference between getting away together (which is important) and getting away together to enrich your marriage. Marriage Enrichment is both fun and provides fuel for growth as a couple.
#3 PRIORITIZE PREVENTATIVE
ALL couples benefit from having marriage mentors, coaches and sometimes marriage counseling.
Seeking Godly counsel and wisdom is a good thing…it is a wise and advantageous thing to do for your marriage. We seek advice and counsel in other areas…makes sense to seek it for the most important earthly relationship we have: our marriage.
What is a marriage mentor? A mentor couple is a couple older than you, more seasoned in life than you are, has experienced married life longer than you have and is an example of a Godly marriage. That does not mean a mentor couple has a perfect marriage. We tell couples, we don’t have a perfect marriage, but we allow the PERFECT ONE, Jesus, to perfect us.
Are there deeper wounds? Need inner healing from the past? Is there any trauma in your past or present? There is help. Don’t stay stuck.
The well being of a marriage is directly impacted by the well being of the individuals in that marriage. Many times, the “issue” in marriage isn’t a marriage issue…it’s unresolved “baggage” from our past, that we all have, that we bring into our marriage. Then we end up taking it out on the one we love the most…our spouse.
Here are some Christian Counseling and Marriage Coaching resources:
- Marriage Maintenance
- Healing the Heart Counseling
- Debra Fileta Counselors Network
- The Marriage Hub Marriage Intensives
Marriage is not the end goal in a relationship. It’s the beginning of a lifelong journey of learning to love someone like Christ. It’s not about being happy but rather becoming holy like Christ.
This takes PURPOSEFUL, PROACTIVE and PREVENTATIVE effort to communicate, be quick to forgive and remember you are on the same team. (Check out our blog for more about our TOP 3 Marriage Maintenance Keys).
There is no win/lose in marriage. We either win together or lose together. Let’s learn to fight together for our marriages as we turn our hearts to God, which equips us to keep our hearts turned towards each other….walking hand in hand in this beautiful covenant God created for Himself, a husband and a wife, when He made Marriage.