One way to bond with your husband (and your children) is to share fun, wacky, or unique times together. When we laugh together, we bond. When we share a silly or wacky moment together with others, then we bond. When we share a unique adventure or event, we bond. Sharing those fun moments brings a smile to our face….and that smile is very healing for relationships! In fact, the Bible says in Proverbs 17:22 “A cheerful heart is good medicine.”
To obtain this good “medicine” for your marriage and your family, you need to be intentional. Get out your calendar and make a note at least every other month to plan a special, wacky, or unique event! Let me give you some examples of things our family has done together.
We have all dressed up in our PJs and gone to Dairy Queen for ice cream. We have hosted costume theme parties where the entire family gets dressed up and comes together for dinner. We have had dinner with a “lights out” theme, where we could use no appliances for cooking and we had to eat by candlelight. We did a caveman dinner where all the food had to be eaten without utensils, even pork ‘n beans!! Be creative. Be silly. Laugh. You will bond and create warm memories.
Watching the news each night on television makes me shudder. We learn of riots, murders, and plagues. We watch towns leveled and lives taken by earthquakes and tornadoes. Life on this earth is so short and we never know when we will be living our last day in these bodies. It causes me to reflect on the legacy I would leave if I were to be called home to be with Jesus today. It is something for you to ponder too. In what condition would you have left your marriage? What would be your marriage legacy? Would your children say they had an excellent role model for what a godly wife is supposed to look like? Or would they say mom was cold and bitter toward dad or seemed to always point out something he had done wrong?
The Bible wisely instructs us “Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry…” (Ephesians 4:26). So, perhaps today is a good day to take inventory on your relationships. Have you let anger and bitterness creep into the relationship with your husband, or your children, or other loved ones? Do what you can to respectfully address the issues that have prompted bitterness or anger. The Bible says in Romans 12:18, “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” So, do what you can today to make peace. Don’t wait until tomorrow. I don’t mean to be theatrical, but truly, none of us has an ironclad guarantee of another sunrise. Let’s leave a godly legacy for our children. Let’s show our daughters how a wife can show respect and honor for her husband while at the same time refusing to put up with disrespectful or abusive behavior.
When the kids are fighting with each other and you overcooked the dinner and you shrunk your favorite new sweater…it’s pretty natural to get a bit grouchy. In those moments, we usually need to “vent”. Unfortunately, our husbands often get the brunt of our “venting”! In fact, the men whom we promised to love and respect can become our scapegoats. The tragically funny thing is then we wonder why our husbands don’t seem to enjoy being around us very much!
One husband once told me that encountering his wife as he walked in the door at the end of his work day was like walking into a buzz saw. She was wired and churning and her tongue was sharp enough to slice right through him. Yikes.
Yes, ladies, we all need to vent sometimes. Some days are incredibly challenging. But let’s pick the correct scapegoat. If we need to talk to someone about our stress, anger, or exhaustion, let’s turn to God. He has really broad shoulders and he’s not afraid to hear what’s on your mind. Psalm 40:1-2 says “I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.” Jesus is the correct scapegoat. In fact, if you study the origin of the word “scapegoat”, it was the term used by the Israelites for a goat that symbolically carried their sins away. Wow! Jesus really is our scapegoat, and he perfectly carries our sins away, as well as our anger and frustration on a really bad day.
So when you feel the frustration mounting and you can tell you’re about to snap at a family member, mentally give your irritation to the Lord. Just picture handing it over to Him. Then take a deep breath, relax your shoulders, and chuckle at the enemy’s pitiful attempt to make you lose your temper! Hah! His stupid plan is defeated once again. You are victorious through Christ!
I’m rather slow to learn some lessons in life and as a wife. One of the things I wish I had realized earlier is that it is entirely too easy for a mom to get so focused on nurturing her children that she subconsciously pushes her husband aside. In fact, in my first marriage, I remember thinking to myself…”My husband is an adult so he can take care of himself. It’s my kids who really need all my attention.” Not good thinking!
Of course, moms need to take care of their children’s needs and we do need to spend time nurturing and disciplining them. However, our children can become idols in our life. When our world revolves around our kids’ successes and failures…and on their activities and their schedule…well then we’ve made our children into idols. When anyone or anything besides God becomes our focus in life, then it has become our idol and our god. One of the big 10 commandments addresses this! Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before me.”
One of the casualties of this idolizing of our kids is our husbands. The bizarre thing is that the very children we were determined to protect end up severely wounded as mom and dad become distant, begin to argue, and often end up divorcing each other. Don’t let this happen to you. Be intentional about spending quality time with both your husband and your children. Even more important than that, spend quality time with God. He must truly be your number one focus in life!