By Amanda Flinn
Do you know the importance of intentionally dating your spouse? I have discovered it over the years, and I want to share my experience with you.
The Importance of Intentionally Dating Your Spouse
My husband and I recently celebrated our sixteenth anniversary by getting away for a few days and staying in a renovated silo just an hour from our home. This sweet place was full-on rustic on the outside (complete with an old-fashioned outdoor bathtub) and absolutely gorgeous on the inside. What a trip!
But it almost didn’t happen.
Though we had been looking forward to the getaway for two months, I wanted to cancel it two days before we left. The thought of spending 48 hours looking at a man I didn’t feel connected to was not my idea of a good time. I was pretty sure he felt the same way. A heated argument turned into silence and no more was said on the matter.
And yet, with plans in place, grandparents coming in to stay with our kids and no chance of getting our money back, we laid our pride and stubbornness down and away we went.
To be honest, we had a great time. We hiked during the day and sat by a fire at night. The playground swings on the back porch made us feel like kids again. We explored local restaurants and watched a movie on Netflix. I took a long soak in the outdoor tub.
Why Intentionally Dating Your Spouse Matters
It turns out that two days alone together, without the distraction of work, kids, hobbies, and homelife was just what we needed. We were able to talk, laugh and enjoy each other’s company as friends, not just parents or marriage partners.
More often than not, in the busyness of life, we are both guilty of going through the motions. We absentmindedly choose to put other people and other tasks in front of loving each other. This leads to anger, resentment, and withdrawal. We start doing things without care for how the other would feel, and then the lie that ‘we don’t need each other’ gets louder.
Yet, we know that there’s a better way.
God’s Intentional Plan For Your Marriage
When God designed marriage, it was to be a reflection of him and his love for us. Just like we have to be intentional in our relationship with God, we also have to be intentional in our relationships with our husbands.
Spending alone time together is vital for the success of our relationship. It’s how we keep our connection strong and how we continue to get to know each other, even sixteen years later. It’s doing marriage on purpose.
When we do marriage on purpose, we are better for it. When we are thoughtful — with our time, resources, energy, words — we are better for it. And when we show up, with nothing on the agenda but to love and listen, we are better for it.
1 Corinthians 16:4 says, “Let all that you do be done in love.”
I’ll be the first to admit that in the day-in-and-day-out grind of marriage, there are days when ‘all that I do’ is more begrudgingly, than in love. But I’m working on it, because God’s working on me.
So, take some time to be intentional with your husband. Find a way to connect and rekindle what once was. Make an active choice to see them through God’s eyes and enjoy a marriage on purpose. And if you happen to need a two-day getaway to a really cute silo, I might know a place.
Wife Step: Make plans for just the two of you. Have dinner at a restaurant, or hang out after the kids go to bed. Visit the place you first met or take a walk downtown.
Amanda Flinn is an award-winning author, blogger and booknerd. As a freelance writer, and the director of Kingdom Edge Magazine, Amanda is passionate about using words to positively impact others. A wife of 16 years, she admits that marriage is the most challenging relationship she has ever had, yet the one that keeps her closest to God. Boymom, dogmom, and friend to anyone who needs one–Amanda wants you to remember that no matter what you’re going through, you’re never alone. To learn more about her debut board book, Yoga Baby, and upcoming writing projects, visit www.amandaflinn.com.