Every now and then, I come across some profound teaching/readings that make me say, “Ooh, this is a good one.” And when I do, I can’t help but share it here. Thursday’s Gilfriends in God daily reading did just that. Bill and I are living proof of standing for a marriage through losing that “lovin’ feeling.” And I’m so glad we are! The ideas below would have helped me when we were floundering and struggling to stay together way back when. I’m happy to say, we’ll be celebrating 19 years of marriage in August! Praise God!
Lost that Lovin’ Feeling?
“Yet I hold this against you; You have forsaken your first love” (Revelation 2:4, NIV).
Friend To Friend
If you’re married, what do you do when you’ve lost that loving’ feelin’? Maybe you truly adored your husband in the beginning, but now you can’t remember why. Maybe you honestly admired his finer qualities, but now you can’t remember what they were. Maybe you appreciated his wonderful attributes, but now take them for granted. What do you do now?
Here’s a statistic you might find interesting. According to an analysis of the National Survey of Families and Households, 86 percent of unhappily married people who stick it out find that, five years later, their marriages are happier. In fact, nearly 60 percent of those who rated their marriage as unhappy in the late 1980’s, and who stayed married, rated their same marriage “very happy” or “quite happy” when re-interviewed five years later ( Linda J. Waite and Maggie Gallagher, The Case for Marriage (New York: Doubleday, 2000) 148). In comparison, those who divorced and remarried and divorced again at a rate of 60 percent (Judith Wallerstein and Julia A. Lewis, and Sandra Blakeslee, The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce, Hyperion, 2000) p295).
So, starting over may very well be the answer … as long as it’s with the same man.
In the book of Revelation in the Bible, God had this to say to the church at Ephesus. “Yet I hold this against you; You have forsaken your first love” (Revelation 2:4). Ephesus was one of the most loving churches in the New Testament and yet, somewhere along the way, they lost that initial thrill of knowing Christ. Their love for each other and for God had grown cold.
As I read God’s lament, I whispered a prayer. “Oh Lord, how many of us women have forgotten our first love. We’ve forgotten the thrill we felt when we first met our husbands: the spine tingling chills when he walked into a room, the heart skipping flutter when he called on the phone, the tender wooing when we opened a letter penned by his hand, the electricity of sexual desire stirred with a kiss. Somewhere between taking out the garbage, paying the bills, running carpool, mowing the lawn, disciplining the kids, folding the laundry…somewhere among the mundane routine of life, we’ve lost that lovin’ feelin’.
How do we get it back? God gave the church two simple steps for the Bride of Christ to renew her passion for her Beloved, and I believe we can apply the same principles to renewing our passion for the man of our dreams.
Remember and Return
Remember what drew you to your husband in the first place? Remember how you tried to please him, capture his heart, and win his affection? That may have been fifty pounds and a full head of hair ago, but that young man who longed to be adored, admired, and appreciated still lives within his heart. He wants to know if he still “has what it takes.” Let him know that he does.
Everyone loves a love story. Tell your children the story of how you first met and fell in love. Remember special days such as your first date, your first kiss, or when you first realized he was the man you wanted to marry. Listen to a tape or watch a video of your wedding. Steve and I celebrate not only our wedding anniversary but also the day he asked me to marry him. I’m sure my son has tired of hearing the story time and time again, but he’s never doubted that his parents are crazy about each other.
Dear Lord, I so want to be a woman that is on fire for You. I want my spiritual passion to be ablaze and never cool. Likewise, I want my marriage to be a passionate example of Christ and the Church. Help me to always remember what drew me to my husband and show me ways to keep that love strong.
In Jesus’ name,