Freedom To Fail

The view from our cabin

Greetings from the high country of North Carolina!  It is snowing “buckets” outside – something I have only seen a few times in my life, and never like this!!!  It is beautiful, but since we don’t have a 4WD vehicle, we’ll be staying in today.  So…we have the time to post.

We were talking this morning about how making romantic plans around special days like Valentines Day can be fun. However, there is always the possibility those plans will not flesh out the way one had hoped.  What do we do with those feelings?  How do we keep from having an argument  when attempting to share with our spouse these thoughts?

Tom says that a lot of the fun is in the planning, which can build up huge expectations.  The whole point of romancing your spouse is to communicate your love and care for them in practical, as well as special ways, on good days and bad days, when you feel like it and when you don’t.

We must make plans, but we mustn’t cling to the plans themselves to make us happy.  Our happiness must be rooted in God’s love for us and our marital love that grows as a result.  Remembering this will give our spouse the freedom to fail in meeting our expectations.  We will be able to pick ourselves up after a great disappointment and move on.

The best of news is – we aren’t dependent on one date to impress or bless our spouse.  We have a lifetime to love and romance each other.  If your Valentines Day didn’t go according to your expectations, the best thing you can do is love your spouse by releasing them to try again!

Posted by Tom and Debi

About Debi Walter

Tom and Debi have been sharing encouragements through their blogs for many years. Marriage, Reading God's Word and documenting family history is our focus. Growing in our relationship with the Lord is primary in all we say, write or do. We are grateful for all who desire to join us in the same endeavors.
This entry was posted in communication, Forgiveness, romancing your spouse. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Freedom To Fail

  1. Nikki says:

    YAY! I’m glad the you two get to enjoy the snow! Ours is pretty much gone. Just patches here and there. Thank you for sharing this post. This is something that both of us have to work on because it seems like our lives hardly ever go as planned and our responses are totally different and sinful! But, it is so fruitful when you release them to the Lord.
    For instance, our B date night. I had planned for us to go to Brixx (a great pizza place here), Barnes and Noble, and Bath and Body Works. Well, it the middle of the date, Danny didn’t seem too interested in Barnes and Noble, so we tried to find other places with a b and ended up at Bed, Bath and Beyond! A place we both love and we hadn’t been there together in a long time. It was great because Danny showed me things that he had thought of getting me as presents but wasn’t sure that I would like. So, it gave us the opportunity for him to get ideas with me there and the night turned out better than I had planned! Valentine’s took the same turn! By God’s grace, I was not tempted to be angry that my plans didn’t work out.

    Again, thanks for sharing. I love it when God is at work in my heart in an area and then it’s on your blog or the message on Sunday morning!

    Enjoy your getaway 🙂


    • debiwalter says:


      I must tell you that after being with Tom for 31 years – this is one thing that never changes – change! It comes at us constantly. Learning this early in marriage will serve you and Danny so well in the years to come. Thank you for the way you encourage us to continue doing this – you are a breath of fresh air.



  2. Colleen says:

    I couldn’t agree more! All the plans I had in my head for this Valentine’s Day seemed to fizzle…including lighting candles! (Who knew the one lighter we have wouldn’t work! lol) BUT, instead of focusing on my own failed expectations I chose to think about what was most important…nurturing our marriage!

    We had actually planned to celebrate on Saturday, and arranged for Brianna to spend the night with a friend. Which was the one part that worked out!

    Once I told David all my grand plans had fizzled he asked what I wanted to do…my number one request was to TALK. A close second was getting dinner. ;D And third was spending $12 at Walmart to buy some tension rods in order to hang curtains (I don’t love, but already own) in the living room…which had NOTHING covering them. Off we went!

    Here’s one of my favorite moments of the night…we were walking through the parking lot at Walmart and man after man was coming out with flowers and balloons. Each one that passed us David said “There goes a smart man…” He went on to joke about how he was the dumb one taking his wife to their first Financial Peace University class on Valentine’s Day…and I looked up at him and said “So who’s the smart man???”

    Those $12 tension rods and starting a class that will help bring PEACE to our marriage and family…Worth so much more to me than flowers and balloons…which, I will admit, I do enjoy receiving!

    Sunday we skipped church and had a leisurely morning…sleeping in, eating the Krispy Kreme doughnuts I had purchased Saturday afternoon…and TALKING some more! And, because I’m the mama of a princess…I asked if David would take both his ladies to the movies in the afternoon BEFORE our class. Which, he did. =D

    Our FPU class was wonderful, and we are freshly aware of God’s grace and kindness to us in oh so many ways…we left loving Him all the more…and with a fresh desire to serve only Him. We came home and performed plastic surgery…Cutting up the last of our credit cards. Who knew how attractive my husband could be while doing THAT! lol

    So…it turns out God has better plans than I do! I am SO glad I trusted Him instead of having a melt down! I had a weekend being bathed in love and care and peace…and words…which was really what my heart desired! =D


  3. Rick and Jean Chance says:

    Or you could have no expectations at all! Rick and I had an unusual Valentine’s Day. With two little girls, most of my energy was put into making cards for Daddy (teachers, therapists, friends, etc.) and due to economic conditions most of Rick’s energy was put into working extra hours to make ends meet. The night before V’day Rick humbly and apologetically told me that he was so sorry, but he didn’t have a chance to get anything for me this year. I laughed and told him that it was perfectly fine because I was giving him a recycled card (one that I had found from a Valentine’s Day years ago) and a box of chocolates that I got while shopping for the Chinese New Year party for our adoption group. We laughed together and that was the best gift of all. J The next day when I gave him the card we laughed again because neither one of us could remember it, or which year I gave it! WE thought this story went along with “Freedom to Fail”. J
    Thanks for your dedication to the “vineyard”. And could you please send us the info for that cabin???!!!
    Rick and Jean Chance


    • debiwalter says:

      Hey Jean,

      It’s so good to hear from you! I actually love the idea of recycling some of those saved Vday cards from years gone by. This would actually be a fun thing to do together on Valentine’s Day – spend the evening going through them. I’ll e-mail you the name of the cabin…we’ve been coming here for 25+ years. It’s a timeshare my parents bought back when we were first married. We have so many memories in this place and how the seasons of life have changed. It’s a peaceful retreat now – whereas in years gone by we were busy making children’s treats and valentines, like you with your adopted girlies. Take care! Debi


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