DECEMBER 6

Anticipation

My beloved responded and said to me, "Arise, my darling, my beautiful one, and come along." SONG OF SOLOMON 2:10

We all know how easily boredom can slip into a marriage relationship. It can start soon after the honeymoon. All the emotion, passion, love and commitment between two people can steadily fade until they end up totally isolated from one another. Boredom and isolation are pandemic in marriages today.

One way to rebuild romantic energy is through the art of anticipation. This comes from taking a page out of Solomon's romantic songbook: Invest time in thinking about the things that fuel passion in your spouse and in making him or her eager to return your love. It's about injecting the element of surprise back into your relationship.

One of the most meaningful examples of this for me was the year Barbara gave me some very special gifts during the two weeks leading up to Christmas, each of them based on the familiar "Twelve Days of Christmas" song. She didn't give them to me in the day, however, but in the night. They were expressions of tenderness and affirmation toward me that communicated her love in a way only she could do as my wife.

I have never looked forward to going to bed each night like I did at that Christmas!

But, men, this works both ways. You need to take the time to think about what communicates love to your wife, to bust out of your ruts and pursue her in a way that surprises and delights her, as well. It doesn't have to be expensive or elaborate. It just needs to be you, thinking ahead, staying in tune with who she is as a woman—anticipating her anticipating you.

DISCUSS

What limits you from putting fun and energy into your relationship? Talk about the need to build anticipation into your marriage and how you will share that responsibility.

PRAY

Pray that no aspect of your life will become dull and cheerless, losing all the energy and spiritual spontaneity, which Christ enjoys adding to our relationships. 

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