When we got married, my husband would still ask me on dates. I thought it was silly. Why should I date him when I’m married to him?
Then one day I realized something. We have to be intentional with our marriages and dating couples should not be having more fun than us old married folk. Seriously!
The thing is – dating couples ARE intentional. When you were dating you went to dinner, the movies, on picnics, or to a local coffee shop. The point is, you found ways to have fun together. Once married we stop doing this. I mean why do I need to put my effort into planning time away with my partner when I live with them? Planning goes out the window and life settles in.
What I found out was that daily life has a way of causing us to forget all the great things we love about each other. My husband is the most hilarious person I have ever met, but when I am cleaning the toilet, I am not thinking about his humor, I’m thinking about how much I wish ALL the men in my house would more carefully aim.
And we are both huge talkers. We can talk for hours, laugh for days, and really cover a million topics in a matter of minutes. The thing is, we don’t do that as often as we used to because there are lunches to pack and bills to pay. We come home and we begin running around the house “trying to get things done” just so we can be ready for the next crazy day.
When we were dating, we talked on the phone for hours, we found any excuse to be together, went out of our way to please each other and gave up other things just to have some fun together.
Who has time for that these days?
It’s time we make time and here’s how we do that in the midst of the busy life we have today.
Twice a month my husband and I have a “date night” that works both as a time to reconnect as well as a time to cross some household items off the list. Dinner is a must for our date night, then we leave the rest open a bit. Usually we end up at the grocery store to grab what we need for the week ahead. I know, us crazy kids… The thing is we look so forward to this night because we try different restaurants and we take our time with dinner. This is an opportunity to reconnect, regroup, and release any of the stress of the last couple weeks. Some nights we do go to the movies, or out for ice cream, but the point is, this is a time for us to be us again. (and the grocery store is just a side note for us- we are in town, don’t want to go back to town, so we quickly get what we need- for us it’s a win win.)
At least once a year we go away for a couple days, just the two of us. We love our trips to the wineries, we love heading to the city for a show, we love finding a nice place to stay and sleeping in and letting someone else clean the toilet for a change.
You married your spouse for a reason. Stay married for a reason. Remember the things you used to do that kept you excited to be together and start doing them again. And if money is tight, then find ways to be together that won’t cost a lot. When my husband and I started planning these dates, we literally kept an envelope of money that we would put a few extra dollars in anytime we could and when it added up to be enough to head out- we did. When there was no extra money, we took a long walk, found some free event happening near us or just had the grandparents watch the kids so we could sit on the back porch with a good cup of coffee and just be together for a bit. The point is we made time for each other.
This week- We challenge you to be creative and ask your spouse on a date. Make it fun, make it something you both like to do, bring back an old memory that you shared. But no matter what you choose, let this be a night where you commit to just having a good time. Problems can be dealt with later and chores will still be there. For one night, just be you again.
Laugh, eat, hold hands, and talk. It’s amazing how one night of fun can wash away days of stress and anxiety. Start dating again- it’s a great thing.
Proverbs 17:22– A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
Lord, today let us learn to have fun again. Remind us to have a cheerful heart and to remember to be just as intentional today with our relationships as we were in the beginning. Help us to see the importance of enjoying our time together and making fun a priority. In Jesus name, Amen.