Marriage can be one of the most rewarding relationships in our lives, but it can also be one of the most difficult. When you’re young and in love, you think to yourself, “This is it. I can’t imagine anything better. I couldn’t be happier!” But as the years pass, you begin to realize that there’s a reason most fairy tales end with the wedding… (and they lived happily ever after right?) After the wedding, life goes back to normal. Careers, children, and everyday chores can get the best of us if we let them. And when there’s not enough time in the day to finish your mile long to-do list, it’s easy for your marriage to take a back seat.
- DO keep in mind why. When you’re feeling ignored by your spouse, what is the true reason? Do they have a work obligation? Are they trying to do something good for others or for the benefit of the family? There have been times in my marriage when I lacked time. Homeschooling, parenting duties, writing deadlines… these things have a way of consuming my time. I’m not consciously avoiding my husband, but I’m sure he has felt that way in the past. I am so thankful that he has been understanding through all my time management issues.
- DO take it to God. When your spouse doesn’t seem to have time to connect, pray about it. Is this something that needs to be addressed? Or do I simply need to be understanding of my spouse’s situation? Is there something that can be done to lighten the workload? Is there something that needs to change in our lives to better our marriage?
- DO have a conversation. Like I said before, I have suffered in the past with time management issues. As gracious as my husband is about this weakness of mine, it’s important that we keep the lines of communication open. As much as I need him to be understanding, I also need him to tell me when I’m taking on too much.
- DON’T gossip. Telling all your friends about your marriage issues is never the answer. Not only does the Bible tell us to avoid gossip, I can honestly say that it has never done anyone an ounce of good. Your marriage is between you and your spouse… not you and your friends.
- DON’T resent. Bitterness grows from the tiniest of seeds. How you think about your spouse in your heart and mind will one day find its way to the surface. Not only that, but resentment wreaks havoc in your own life as well.
- DON’T pull away. I don’t know about you, but my first instinct when I feel hurt or ignored is to pull away. I do my own thing, ignore my feelings, and cause unnecessary tension in the process.
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If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men. – Romans 12:18 (NASB)
So far as it depends on you… Paul’s words in Romans 12 make two things abundantly clear:
- We need to do everything we can on our part to keep peace with “all men.” (And this included our spouse.)
- There will be times when others (including our spouse) won’t do the same. Even then… we do our part.
Time is a valuable commodity. It is something we often take for granted. We also have a way of misusing our time. We procrastinate, overbook ourselves, and waste it on a regular basis. I can be mad at my spouse for not having time for me, but I know that I’m guilty of all these things as well. Marriage is a two-way street…
Making time for each other is crucial to having a happy and successful marriage. And even though it can be tough with life’s obligations, it’s always worth it.
Are we doing everything we can on our end to make time for our marriage?
But what if you’re doing everything you can on your end and your spouse still doesn’t have time for you? Take it to God. Rely on Him during this season of your life. He always has time for His children… no matter what.
*Unless otherwise indicated, scripture quotations taken from the NASB.