On the Council Road Women's blog this month, we’ve been chatting about all things L-O-V-E. From God’s love, to the love we have for our children, to the love we give to others—we’re trying to cover it all. As someone who has been in love with the same man for two decades, I can’t let the month pass without offering some words of encouragement regarding married love.
My husband and I often say we don’t want to simply stay married, we want to pursue a lifelong love affair with each other. However, it’s no simple task to love another human day in and day out, season after season, as you both grow and become the person God is calling you to be. Just saying “I do” is not enough to stoke the flame of long-term love that loves whether you feel like it or not, whether he deserves it or not.
Sheer will power definitely disappoints, but we have found some things that help us continue to show the kind of love to each other that God calls us to.
Share your thoughts.
Anyone married longer than two seconds knows we can’t read each other’s mind (as much as we’d like to). It takes regular, intentional conversation to share all manner of things rolling around in our heads. We must keep communicating, about everything: the daily duties, huge decisions, financial details, parenting concerns, work lives, personal issues, hopes, dreams and fears—all of it. As we share our thoughts, we continue to get to know each other, growing in friendship and intimacy.
Share your life experiences.
Speaking of growing in friendship, nothing builds a bond like a shared experience. Whether it’s trying a new restaurant on date night, doing a home project together, going on a trip or adopting a hobby together, shared experiences build memories, create bonds, and promote healthy connectedness.
We all have friends, other than our spouse, who we share thoughts and experiences with, but no one else should be given the privilege to know you physically. Sexual connectedness is an honor and it is the wise wife who views it that way. This intimacy is not a chore or a duty, but an opportunity to uniquely connect with your husband in the most vulnerable way. God has given the act of sexiual intimacy to us as a gift and a blessing, to be treasured and enjoyed.
Share your gifts.
God has also given us unique spiritual gifts and natural abilities. These can (and should) be used by us in our individual spaces, however, serving side by side when possible is a priceless experience for husband and wife. When we see firsthand how God can use us as a team, it strengthens our relational and spiritual bond, taking our union from the two to three.
As Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 reminds us, “Two are better than one because they have a good return for their efforts. If either falls, his companion can lift him up...if two lie down together they keep warm...and if someone overpowers one person, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not easily broken.”
When God is at the center of our marriage, we are able to soak in His love for us, giving us a full heart out of which to love our husbands better.
I’d love to hear how you and your honey have kept the relational flame alive. What has most helped you?
Meet the Author!
Heather McAnear is a wife, mom, author and speaker with a passion for sharing God's truth to help women understand their uniquely beautiful design and how to use it for God's glory! She loves teaching young married couples with her husband, homeschooling their three children, traveling the world, enjoying good chocolate and long conversations in coffee shops. CRBC has been her church home for two decades and she is thrilled to be part of the Women's Ministry team, helping women connect with each other and grow in their walk with Jesus!