2. Set Out to Enjoy Life Together
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My husband is fun, quirky, and has the most ridiculous-told-pop-jokes-before-he-was-even-a-Dad sense of humor. He reminds me to laugh and dance and find humor in even the most difficult of situations. He reminds me to enjoy life, to find fun, and to shake off my seriousness.
To be fair, I feel like there is a lot in life to be serious about. We are raising children in uncertain times, forging a path in ministry together, and figuring out how to live well despite the pandemic. I could allow these things to swallow me whole, but then there's my guy reminding me that one of the most beautiful parts of our Christian walk and commitment to Christ is to truly love and enjoy this life that we've been given.
This perspective helps us keep our focus on eternity. It helps us to love each other and others better. Additionally, this helps us release things that really weren't ever in our control anyway and focus our energy on appreciation for each other and the path we are on. As couples, when we're able to focus on the big picture and release the small stuff, we can have greater overall satisfaction in our marriages. I believe that this level of satisfaction can become the balm that soothes our souls when our adventure together feels more like forging a path in some unknown and uncharted territory.
3. Release Expectations
Before getting married, I had some serious expectations of what married life would look like. I wanted our relationship to be formulaic and stable. I wanted to know exactly what I was getting into and what our life together would look like.
That expectation was dashed the week before we even said "I do," when my husband was offered a ministry job out of state and in an area I had never even heard of. The suggestion to release expectations is in no way to say, "release expectations of your spouse." Rather, I believe that we need to work tirelessly to uphold our vows, grow and develop in our marriage, and love each other more and more over time. What we can release, however, are our expectations of situations.
We can let go of how we think life will play out and surrender to the adventure of growing together in marriage. The reality is that very little in life is promised. That job may not be there tomorrow; whether we will or will not have children is not promised, where we live and what God is calling us to—these are often unknowns and uncertain. Situationally, life is always changing. Even the amount of time that we are given with each other in marriage is uncertain, and so, if we are able to release our expectations, then we can live a life with hands wide open, full of gratitude and appreciation for our adventure.
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