Dating your spouse. Yes, just because you are married does not mean you should stop dating! And let me tell you why...happy marriages are based on a great friendship. And just like how you would make time to go out to coffee (or maybe plan a day of shopping with your best friend, or in my case, probably my sister!), you also need to make time to just be with your spouse to communicate, re-connect, and simply enjoy one another without worrying about who is taking which kid where, what are the bills for the month, what household chore needs to be completed next.
I would like to take this moment to talk to you about last weekend, when my husband and I took a personal day off from work and had a little adventure. And not only did we have a great little “Date” weekend, but I was also able to help fuel Josh’s new passion AND he was able to give back to me, as well. Don’t worry, I will explain it all, starting now!
This past July, Josh learned that he has a real interest in whiskey, specifically the art of tasting and then explaining what is in it, how it was distilled, and what it should be paired with. Someday, he would really like to take this hobby into a profession. He is filled with a passion to learn all he can and gets very excited to talk to the distillers while tasting whiskey. I, on the other hand, do not drink, nor taste, whiskey. Yuck. But I do love my husband and recognized that with the stress he has been feeling at work (you can look back to my Bending, Not Breaking blog!), I needed to do something, and quick, because that stress was starting to cause a strain in our relationship.
So, I asked my husband if I could take him on a date. It wasn’t quite a cheesy ‘80’s movie way of asking him on this date, but I certainly did get his attention. Because I ASKED him if I could take him on a Distillery Tour of Downtown Seattle and Woodinville and if he could possibly take a personal day off work so we could go on a Friday-Saturday.
a. I felt he needed a day away from work, where he wouldn’t even have time to check his emails, which I think is VERY healthy to do from time to time.
b. I picked something to do that would encourage his passion.
c. In return, Josh realizes how much I LOVE LOVE LOVE to plan vacations and itineraries (I think I should have been a travel agent!), therefore I was getting to do something I enjoy while serving my husband. (A total give and receive!)
d. We had never been to Woodinville, WA, so this was a new adventure for us!
We had an amazing time! We got to take time for one another, talking, laughing, and learning how to stay calm in horrible traffic and construction with a car GPS that had us driving in circles, literally! Josh (and I) learned SO much about the whiskey and distilling industry, which made his excitement for this passion of his grow. We Christmas shopped together. We went to some very beautiful places we had never thought even existed! (Check out the St. Michelle Chateau winery
if ever you are in Woodinville, even if you do not drink. It is just breathtaking!) Most importantly, we strengthened our friendship, which also strengthens the intimacy in our relationship. It was a much needed two days. It was not perfect every moment, but every moment made us more perfect for one another.
The Purpose of Marriage
God created marriage, and he realized man should not be alone, therefore He made Eve for Adam, so that they could be blessed and fill the earth. God is the center of every vow and every union, even if you do not necessarily believe that or realize that. (More on that in future posts, I promise!) God’s purpose is for us to have that partner in life to support one another, encourage one another, and to build a sense of purpose in the relationship together. Ephesians 5:22-33 really sums up, to me, what the real meaning of marriage is: it is taking two people from two different families and creating ONE, one unit of trust, commitment, and LOVE, with Christ always in the center of that marriage. “However, let each of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.” Ephesians 5:33, ESV. You see, we are called to love and respect God, and when we do that, love and respect our husband/wife, what we are really doing is honoring God. Pretty awesome, right?
Encouraging Final Thoughts
It doesn’t matter if you go out to a new (or even the same ol’ one you always go to!) restaurant, plan a whole weekend vacation, or simply offer to go to Home Depot when your husband says he needs something there, by taking some time out of being “mommy, house-cleaner, food-preparer, work-force wonder trying to get stuff done”, and just being YOU with your husband, you can focus on enjoying one another.
Another thing about dating your spouse...I know my husband loves me when I have no make-up on, just got back from a run, hair not washed for three days, and wearing my most unattractive sweats. While I know this, is that what I would have worn out on a date with him 10 years ago prior to the ring on my finger? (Well, maybe, as we did work out together since we were both PE teachers!!!) But my point is this, even if it is just for him, in the comfort of your own home and no one else will see you, take some time to wash that hair and find something in your closet you feel pretty in! Look, your spouse and GOD loves you no matter what, and I don’t want you to read into this that I think you need to go all out, but if you put just a little effort into your “date”, that little effort will go a long way!
Build one another up! Encourage one another's dreams. Sometimes my husband talks about moving to Virginia (I don’t know why really, since he’s never even visited Virginia!) and I know it’s a daydream that will never ever actually come into fruition, but just like before we got married and had lots of ideas and dreams about our future, it is healthy to continue having ideas and dreams about the future!!! I dream of our family moving to a European country for a couple years for an adventure and to show our boys a different culture. Again, my husband knows I am just dreaming, but it is fun to talk about the what-ifs! And it adds a little fun to our date nights too.
And last: “So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” (Matthew 19:6) Your marriage is precious. Let no one come between it, especially not either one of you! Take the time to communicate with one another, give grace to one another, try to understand one another, LOVE one another. Continue to keep the intimacy alive. And keep Christ in the center.
Thanks for reading today!
I would love to tell you more about anything you found of interest in today’s blog, such as whiskey tasting, traveling and vacationing in Washington State, ideas for dating your spouse, marriage coaching, or having a relationship with our Savior, Jesus Christ! Message me, call me- I’m more than happy to help you! May you find blessings in all you do!