READY8 “A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person.” ~ Mignon McLaughlin
AIM8 I have a confession to make. I am a hopeless romantic! I swoon over a good love story and just knew, without a doubt, that my fairy tale marriage was going to come true and I’d always have the happily-ever-after I always dreamed about. Shamelessly, this hopeless romantic got married on Valentine’s Day and can truthfully say that I am living in the middle of my happily-ever-after story right now and am looking forward to what the next page in my novel looks like. But my fairy tale story didn’t come without its evil villains and triumphs over troubles. I guess that’s why marriage is really a four letter word: W-O-R-K!
Wake up, friends! Yes, I said that marriage requires work! The studies on the divorce rate in America say that approximately 40% to 50% of all marriages end in divorce. This statistic means that out of every two marriages, one will not survive. Staggering reality isn’t it? Most of us have either been divorced, know someone who is divorced or have been affected by the divorce of friends or family. While divorce is a sad reality of life, God is a God of healing and restoration and only He can make a wrong situation right again. I am living proof of the God-given rewards for my faithfulness after a failed first marriage. Fortunately, I can honestly say, I learned a lot from that experience and am now reaping the benefits of a successful second marriage.
There is, however, HOPE for our hurting world!! Start today and make time to evaluate the current status of your relationship. Are you feeling loved? Do you praise and admire your loved one? Have you discussed your purpose or life-long dreams together? Is your relationship a safe place where you feel comforted and secure? If you answered no to any of those questions, it’s time for an intervention. Perhaps you and your spouse need to have a date night or a weekend away to reconnect and rediscover what made you fall in love with each other in the first place. If you feel you’re in a situation where things seem too far gone, throw away your selfish pride and ask for help. Getting a neutral party or professional involved can assist you both with weeding through the emotions and identifying the areas that need attention. You promised to have and to hold, for better and for worse, and you OWE it to yourselves to roll up your sleeves and W-O-R-K to make sure you give your marriage the priority it deserves. You are worth it. Your spouse is worth it. Besides, your happily-ever-after depends on it!
FIRE!8 Place random post-it notes in your spouse’s wallet or purse, in his car or on her make-up case that say “I love you.” Send a text or email in the middle of the day saying that you are thinking about him or her. Both of those simple challenges are guaranteed to start the sparks flying that will ignite your love flame again.