Let’s be honest … sometimes marriage is messy and difficult. Sometimes we forget what it felt like to have butterflies soaring in our stomach. Sometimes we don’t save much energy for our spouse, leaving things feeling dull rather than refreshed, rejuvenated, and even spicy. Sometimes we spend too much time wrangling children, worrying about bills, working additional hours to land that promotion at work, and trying to get more involved at church that we lose sight of those “head over heels in love” moments.
Maybe it’s time to refresh and rejuvenate things – remember why we fell in love with our spouse in the first place. We need to be reminded of the beautiful vows we recited – to love one another through every changing and chaotic season of life.
Here are 10 ways to refresh your marriage right now:
1. Set realistic expectations.
It’s important not to compare our love stories to what we see on social media, read in novels, and see in romantic chick flicks. Our story is our story, and what we need to remember is that social media, novels, and chick flicks tend to shine a light on the highlight reel of romantic relationships rather than the reality and even blooper reel. Don’t compare your story – let God continue writing it.
2. Start with a date night!
Why not spice things up by going on a different kind of date. Perhaps you are normally movie-goers – try a date at the local ice skating rink, a romantic carriage ride or stroll in the park whilst sipping hot chocolate. Mix things up!
3. Talk about your dreams together.
It’s vital to take some time to talk about your dreams for the future, this way you can better support and encourage your spouse in their endeavors. Dream big together. Married couples are not just roommates, we should also be each other’s biggest cheerleader and teammate.
4. Serve others together!
I fall more in love with my husband when I see him serve and help others. It reminds me how beautiful his heart is and how precious and genuine his soul is. Serving together is a phenomenal reminder that we are in this together and when we work together, we can accomplish so much more. Serve at church, bake and deliver cookies to your local fire house or police station, or shop for and assemble homeless kits to hand out when you see individuals on the streets. The opportunities are endless!
5. Pray as a couple.
I’ve always been told that you can never stay mad or frustrated at a praying spouse. It’s also difficult to stay angry when you go before the throne and unleash your feelings and beg God for guidance. Prayer takes you to a different realm. It takes us before our Heavenly Father, our Creator. It takes us to the One who can change our hearts and redirect our minds. Praying together can change the whole dynamic of your relationship and your life.
6. Do a couple’s devotion.
My husband and I did our first Bible study together last year and it was such a unique opportunity to grow in our faith as a couple. To challenge one another. To open up about our shortcomings and what God is teaching us. These are the things that can truly bond and unite a couple and strengthen your relationship to remind you how much you love your significant other, even when the curveballs of life begin raging. Even when the enemy is working overtime to attack your relationship.
7. Be silly.
There is something that takes you back to the fun and flirtation of dating when you know how to be silly together. Dance in the kitchen. Sing horribly at the top of your lungs in the car to your favorite throwback songs. Play games together. Tell corny jokes. We all need laughter in our lives and in our marriage.
8. Be romantic.
It’s important to remember that the onset of romance should not always be focused on your desire or intention for sex. Relationships need romance without ulterior motives too. Cook dinner together and light candles everywhere. Snuggle and watch a movie on the couch. Go on a sunset run together (if you’re the running type). Make waffles together on Saturday morning while your children watch cartoons. Carve out time to just BE together without worrying or planning for what’s next.
9. Rekindle your bedroom relationship.
You know this had to be thrown in the mix somewhere. As you have children, as demands grow and evolve at work, as the stress of life increases, sometimes the bedroom relationship is put on the back burner. It is important to make time for your spouse. Take time to focus on their needs and on your bedroom relationship.
10. Serve one another.
Find creative and unique ways to serve your spouse and show them how much they mean to you. How much you desire them. Leave random love notes. Pick up their favorite coffee and surprise them at work. Bake their favorite dessert just because! Do a chore they normally do before they even have a chance to think about it. Taking time to focus on our spouse will help our relationship thrive in a whole new way.