Whenever we come to our mountain cabin the first thing we notice is the fresh air. It is sweet and promotes a sense of peace. Add to it a newly mowed landscape and the air is intoxicating. We all need fresh air. Taking time to pull away from the dust of life and enjoy God’s creation is the best remedy for renewal.
This past week you may have noticed silence from our blog. This was because, in honor of my upcoming 60th birthday, Tom sent me away to our cabin for a week with some of my oldest friends who have contributed much to my growth as a friend, wife, mother and woman of God. We laughed, cried and talked about the past, present and future. Some have faced hardship I’ve yet to experience. Hearing their heartache and how God is helping them stay the course encourages me that whatever may come, God will be there to hold me up and lead me forward. Worship informed our hearts of the Truth God supplies. He will help us sing Songs In The Night as Matt Redman has so beautifully written.
We enjoyed the fresh air, fellowship and worship. As we sat on the porch, we found ourselves refreshed not only with the company, but with the atmosphere the fresh air created.
It’s the same in marriage. We need to pull away and breathe fresh air into our relationship from time to time. It takes intentionality in order to discover what it is that helps us both feel refreshed and renewed.
How do you know when fresh air is lacking?
- Everything has a staleness to it. Your schedule, your conversation, your thoughts, your prayers.
- What normally comes easily seems strained. It may be talking about the schedule, finances, parenting or finding time to enjoy sexual intimacy.
- You notice what is wrong with your spouse more than what they are doing right.
- Temptations are stronger to pull away from each other rather than leaning in.
- A growing discontent with life in general.
These are just a few indicators that you need to pause and breathe some fresh air into your marriage. Some people ignore these indicators and try instead to produce artificial remedies. This is like spraying your home with Febreeze and thinking you’ve fixed the smell. All you have done is cover-up what is obviously needing attention.
Don’t fake fresh air. The only one you hurt is yourself.
Instead set aside time to pull away together and talk about those things bothering you. This needs to be a planned time–not spontaneous, to guarantee you are both ready to engage in the conversation. If you have the means for a getaway this is even better, but not necessary. We all require fresh air to grow strong marriages.
The good news is God has promised to supply everything we need…
“His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” – 2 Peter 1:3-11 ESV (emphasis mine)
We pray God will help you breathe deeply of the grace He has supplied and that your marriage will be refreshed in His strength for His glory.