Wednesday, October 21, 2009

What Couples Need Most

Last night at our Husband's Stimulus Night, Jay Laffoon challenged us to woo our wives.

We were all in. Can't think of anyone in the room who disagreed, or even resisted. Can't believe any husband would. The thing is - we were all there, all paid $5, all sacrificed an evening, because we want to woo our wives. Jay helped us know how to do that better, and motivated us to get it done.

The persistent dilemma, however, is in finding the time and energy to do it. This was especially expressed in the Q&A:

  • We want to spend time with our wives.
  • It doesn't have to lead to sex (not that we'd refuse it!).
  • The busy-ness, distractions, demands, of work, family, money, church, etc. make the time available to spend with our wives disappear.
What to do? Your ideas are welcome, so please comment about what's worked for you or others. In the meantime, here are some of my thoughts:

  • When you're juggling all those balls in your life, and it seems like your future depends on each one of them continuing to circulate in the air, it's the balls that seem optional that get missed and dropped. You've got a job, and the kids, and demands around the house, and other things that demand a place in the priority list. Dating your wife, or even finding some time to talk without distraction, seems like one of the easiest things to lose in the mix.
  • Whatever actions you take to accomplish it, time with your wife needs to be bumped up the priority list. It needs to become as urgent as anything else you do. More important than work, kids, and home repair.
  • Whatever actions you take, you will have to sacrifice something. (Sacrifice, according to Ephesians 5, is the very definition of the love husbands should have for their wives). Jay emphasized that the only relationship that should come before our wives is the one we have with God. So any other competing time-taker in our lives is fair game for the sacrifice. 
  • Jay also spoke of Tozer's description of the Christian life: Magnify God, Mortify Self, Simplify. To simplify means dropping some of the balls we keep trying to juggle. You need to drop a couple of them so that you can pick up the one you've left on the floor - your time with your wife. Don't think that you can keep juggling all of them, or even add a few. 
  • Your wife will see your sacrifice. And maybe that will help her to drop a juggling ball and make more time for the both of you.
  • Remember - Your kids need not only to have parents who stay together without a divorce--they need to have parents who love each other profoundly.
  • So, the question becomes--What are you willing to sacrifice?
Let me know what you're thinking. Women--you can chime in, too. And you can comment even if you weren't at the Marriage Stimulus Night.


Anonymous said...

My parents, from the time my siblings and I were very young, took special weekends away from us. They modeled a behavior that Pat and I eagerly adopted into our new marriage (13 years ago) and continue to this day. We sometimes have to force ourselves to do it because our kids are so dang cool and we know they'd enjoy our destination, but I must admit that I'm never disappointed by our special time together. I thank God for my parents because they modeling this wonderful behavior and also for my husband for making me a priority.

Ron Benson said...

So Anonymous (1) who is married to Pat: What have you had to sacrifice to make this happen?

Anonymous said...

Well it's a financial cost for sure, but I don't really think of that as a huge sacrifice... probably time is the big thing. We used to go every three months like clockwork. Now we're so busy that we have to pick a date and stick to it and not allow ourselves to include the children. So #1, time; #2, elevating ourselves above everything else cool that's going on; #3, and the ever present battle of wanting to be great parents.
I don't mean to be anonymous - just too lazy to look up my pass word. Tricia is married to Pat and LIKES it!!!!!!

Ron Benson said...

Thanks, Tricia. It is a fight to find the time and make the sacrifice, often of good things. It's a matter of priority.