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This summer I am celebrating 11 years of marriage. I am so thankful that after all this time we still love and respect each other and I wonder how in the world we have managed to be happy together for so long and what we can do to insure it stays that way for the future.
I always hear of stories about people who have been married for 10, 20, 30 plus years who one day just leave.
I think we all know someone who left a marriage that left us wondering: They seemed so happy, What happened?
When I talk to people about this, or you read about it, it usually stems from people not taking care of themselves or their marriage.
They one day look up and don’t recognize themselves or their spouse. Or they just have no more patience for dealing with the same things over and over again for so many years.
How can we make sure that we don’t end up lost in our marriage?
One of the best ways to not wake up one day lost with no clue who you are or who your husband is- is to take care of your marriage.
6 ways You can take care of your marriage
Please read this before you continue.
Any advice I give in this post does not apply to you if your spouse is abusing you!
That is a completely different scenario. One that I don’t have experience in.
If this is what is happening to you, then please bring yourself to a safe location and ask someone for help.
Now we can continue. Below are 6 ways you can take care of your marriage.
Depend on Christ
This come first because it is the most important.
A Christian marriage has 3 people. The wife, the husband and Christ.
Making a marriage works means that we can not ignore Christ and we need to make Him the centre of our marriage. (connect to: 30 days of praying for your marriage)
There have been so many times when I have felt loss, or confused and did not know where to go or what to do. In those times, I turned to God and asked Him for patience, wisdom, direction and much more.
Jesus is the only one who can give us what we need to be satisfied in marriage.
Spend time with God and have a closer relationship with your husband by praying scripture for your marriage.
Spend time together
The best way to take care of your marriage is to spend time with your husband.
How much time do you Spend with your husband?
I know that for me, it never seems to be enough and I am always looking for ways to spend more time with my husband.
But life is busy! Just being in the same living space does not make you close to one another.
It’s easy to let kids, work, or even The Lord’s service get you so busy you don’t have time or energy for your spouse.
If you neglect time with each other, soon enough you will become like roommates or just people who help each other raise the children.
It is so important to make time for your marriage.
He can’t complete you
When watching romantic movies or reading romance novels, the couples always seem to complete each other and be everything that the other person needs.
This is not realistic.
If you expect your spouse to complete you, then you are setting yourself up for disappointment and disaster down the road.
I think most women get unhappy in marriage because they expect their husbands to be everything to them.
Once you realize that your spouse can’t be everything and that he should not be everything, you will be so much happier.
Have Me time
One of the best ways you can take care of your marriage is to take care of yourself.
This is a hard one for many women, it sees selfish and self centered to make any time for ourselves.
But, if we are always taking care of others and not of ourselves then we will get tired, burned out and feel more likely to quit.
I know that it is hard to take some me time, but it is so important.
Keep Your Promises
On our wedding day, we looked at each other and vowed to stay married for better or worst, for richer or for poorer, and in sickness and health until death comes or The Lord returns.
Looking back, I realize I had no clue what I was promising!! I had no way of knowing what was ahead of us and what we would face together.
In the 11 years we have been together we have faced the following:
- 3 layoffs
- 1 miscarriage
- Mental health issues
- Loss of family and friends
- Move across the country-- away from family and friends
- 3 children
- And much more
Through all of this, my husband and I kept our promises to each other. .
When we stood in front of each other, we meant what we were saying.
We keep our promises to each other because we made them to each other, but we also made them to God.
When hard times come, remember what you promised and who you promised them too.
Having this mind set will help you not give up when things get hard.
Don’t let the hard times dictate your actions
I am not going to lie, there have been a few moments were I thought it would be easier to quit and start over. Or, I have even thought how much easier it would be to just leave.
Those moments have been few and far between but they have gone through my head.
When hard times come, it's always easy to wonder:
Is the grass greener on the other side?
Will things be easier if I did not have to handle this thing or that thing?
But, when you are feeling upset, discouraged, sad, disillusioned-- this is not a time to be making a decision about your marriage.
Most often those thoughts are due to sleep deprivation, lack of connection lack of intention, lack of time and so on.
Notice that I used the word LACK a few times. When you are feeling down about your marriage, it means that you are missing something.
Before you pull the plug, figure out what you are missing and see if you can fill that void.
Don’t let one moment or one thought lead you to making a rash decision.