Another winter storm blew in this week. We were snowed in and I was okay with that on the first day. I wasn’t feeling claustrophobic yet. But give me a couple of days…even hours and I begin feeling itchy and I want out. I want winter over.
Winter is work. There’s shoveling and plowing, scraping icy windshields and warming chilly cars. We bundle up wherever we go and haul winter gear from place to place. I’m already tired of this snow just from simply writing about the work to be done. Yet, if we want to get anywhere, it takes work!
Right now, there are no slip-on-the-flip-flops-and-walk-out-the-door-days. Instead it’s bundle, boots, hats, mittens and me repeating to the little one: “Did you go to the bathroom before you put all that on?”
Summer is easy ~ Like our dating days. Flip-flops on, windows down and tunes playing. Breeze blowing through our hair and warmth covering our skin. It’s all sunshine and bikini’s!
Now it’s marriage and post-babies… and not much bikini-wearing!
Our marriages can enter winter seasons. Seasons when everything is work. What was once easy and fun is now buried; requiring work to shovel out.
Staying connected is work. Connection isn’t really difficult in the summer-dating-days. Late night phone calls and midnight strolls underneath the stars make it all very romantic and easy. But now pillow talk consists of alternating snore patterns and drool coming from the mouth as our sleepy heads crash in exhaustion.
10 Ways to Stay Connected in Marriage
- Remember you’re on the same team – Marriage isn’t a competition against each other but a team working together for the win.
- Dream and make goals together – This is easy when dating; lying on the beach of life breathing in the rays of sunshine; but in the everyday mess of life, dreams can be covered over by heavy clouds of duty so take time to sit together, break through the clouds and dream again.
- Stop comparing, it builds discontent – In our world of Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram, pictures of perfection make everyone else’s life seem so together compared to our own. Wishing for what another has makes us ungrateful for what God has already given to us.
- Realize there is no perfect marriage – Real marriage brings real life; messy and flawed. Two imperfect people loving each other through an imperfect life.
- Pay attention to attitude- I recently read a blog post about applying mom sayings to our marriages. Taking my own mom saying of “Watch your tone!” Reminds me to speak with kind words when speaking with my hubby. Sometimes the ones closest to us receive our most unkind attitudes.
- Sharing the load, lightens the load – Carrying things alone builds up walls and barriers between us. Instead share the load, keep communication lines open and remember you’re on a team! Keep talking, keep sharing.
- Choose to Love – Days come when we just don’t feel the love. On those days we choose love. We place the needs of the one we vowed to love above our own needs, wants and desires.
- Fight fair – Listen with an open heart and mind. Speak with honesty and love. (James 1:19-20 – Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.)
- Make time for play time – Those dating days of summer lovin’ are fun. Let’s not just keep them there. Have fun together, laugh often and stay “physically” fit. (I’ll leave those details up to you.)
- Pray together – Nothing strengthens a marriage more than a husband and wife communicating together with the God who created them and knows all that He has for them in this life. A three-stranded rope isn’t easily snapped. (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)
At times we get lost and overwhelmed with the mentality that it’s too much work. — winter and relationships— but I have found when I change my focus and think on the good things, my attitude changes, I count all things in thankfulness. And in counting those gifts, my love for God and my husband grows deeper.
Join the Conversation: What have you found to be good connecting points for marriage? I would love to hear from you!