If you look at social media much it appears that almost everyone is doing great! Social media promotes producing and proclaiming perfection, even tough we know the truth is many are suffering. I meet many couples that are “fed up” or “starving” in their relationships. There is a pattern developing. Couples are losing interest in each other. There are partnerships, but not many loving selfless marriages as God intended. And yes, I’ll say it right off the bat, viewing pornography comes up almost all the time in one way or the other. It’s damages connection. I hear, “What happen to us?”, “I didn’t sign up for this”, “I just don’t feel like I love anymore”. And all it really takes if a few simple gestures to feed your marriage. Often it’s a slow fade, but many are heading toward marriage malnutrition, starving for a healthy relationship, disconnected and discontent.
IMPORTANT QUESTIONS TO ADDRESS
Are you nice to each other? Being nice is a choice. How is your tone, are you demanding? Being nice is an action also. Do you make beds, pick up messes, do dishes, keep the yard/home picked up, fold clothes, smile, say thank you? All those actions involve being nice.
How is your tone? Changing your message delivery is a choice. Remember when you were a child you were asked to think before you speak? It still works.
How is your timing? Picking the right time to deliver is a choice. Yes, do slow down, have a good tone, but don’t forget timing, it really does matter.
Are you focused on each other or yourself? Choosing what you are focused on is a choice. Shut it off, put the phone down. Really, it’s not that hard!
Do you show interest in your spouses’ life? Showing a genuine interest in them is a choice. If you are selling something or doing a service, think about how much interest you show in the perspective buyer. You are engaged, locked in, having fun. Why? You know showing interest in them helps the relationship. So, do it with your spouse. Stop being so selfish. Try selfless behavior for a change.
Do you spend time together? Taking part of your busy day for your spouse shows that they are priority and is a choice. Be as intentional with your spouse as you are with your employees, buddies, or teammates. Try these on for size: “is there anything I can do to help you?” or “What would you like to do?”
Is your affection for your spouse evident? Showing affection is a choice. Showing affection is intentional. And guess what, you act like a slob, jerk, loser, a mouth all day, then want sex, you truly don’t understand affection. Compliment your spouse, affirm each other, building up each other is a good place to start.
Does your spouse know you made a mistake? Admitting you are wrong and apologizing is a choice. You can’t move forward without forgiveness. Push it under the rug, focus on the kids or the next vacation, or your job promotion, it’s all masking the inevitable and unforgiveness is still present. It will come up later and hanging on hurts everyone.
Do you invest in your marriage? Enriching your marriage is a choice. Do things together. Buying stuff isn’t going to deepen relationships. I’ve heard it many times before, “I provide and you still aren’t happy” or “I do this and you still complain”. It’s because doing or buying things do not bring happiness.
Feeding your marriage takes consistency, being selfless, instead of selfish, esteeming others better than yourself, speaking with kindness, seeking common goals, worshiping together, forgiving one another and seeking help when needed.
David is a father, husband, business owner, and ministry leader. He is Founder and Director of a Hope 2 Offer, an Iowa non-profit, focused on counseling and public speaking and The Orange Planet, a central Iowa based basketball instruction company started in 2008.
As always, thanks for reading Unmasked.