“Relationships, especially marriage require dedicated blocks of time to grow and flourish.”
Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – February 19, 2021
There’s an opportune time to do things, a right time for everything on the earth: A right time to cry and another to laugh, A right time to lament and another to cheer, A right time to make love and another to abstain, A right time to embrace and another to part, A right time to search and another to count your losses, A right time to hold on and another to let go, A right time to rip out and another to mend, A right time to shut up and another to speak up. Ecclesiastes 3:4-7, The Message
Relationships, especially marriage, require dedicated blocks of time to grow and flourish. Undisturbed, uninterrupted conversations that connect body, soul and spirit. A time for our minds to marinate together on what the other is thinking: joys, fears and anticipating the future. Giving each other the gift of being together to grow closer together is an expression of trust and love. Trust since there are always reasons why being away won’t work: can’t afford the financial cost or the time spent away. And love as we long to be with the one who is the heart of our affections.
My wife Rita and I have tried to make quarterly commitments to focus exclusively on each other without the distractions of parental and work responsibilities. Rita’s mom was our go to, to care for our children. Because of her capacity to love them so well, our four girls couldn’t wait to be spoiled by their generous grandparents! When Rita’s parents were not available, we would ask friends to take one or two of the girls for a night or two. We were able to depart because we had the support of a community that valued marriage. Relational health happens within community.
“I am reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also” (2 Timothy 1:5).
As you plan to get away quarterly as a couple, consider this simple and affordable calendar commitment. Block off a day, night and the following day, sometime in January to update your financial budget for the upcoming year and collaboratively, add to the calendar your priorities for the next 12 months. Plan a time to get away for a week just the two of you sometime over the new year. Husbands and wives who pray and play together stay together. Plan to depart quarterly.
We can learn from a mistake made by the first couple Adam and Eve, who ran into issues when they failed to obey the Lord’s command. The tempter Satan caused a relational rift, and led them to a series of poor decisions, as they found themselves emotionally, mentally, and spiritually disengaged from one another. Eve needed Adam to help her when the enemy tempted her, she needed her husband’s brave protection. When we get away to get together: we help each other prepare for the hard times, anticipate temptations and celebrate with gratitude the good times. Depart quarterly to enjoy the Lord, His creation and each other. Love is jealous for time together.
“Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’” (Genesis 3:1)?
Heavenly Father, grow our faith to trust you to fill in the gaps when we plan a time in our busy schedule to be together just the two of us, in Jesus’ name, amen.
How much time and money should we budget over the next 12 months to get away together?
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