Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Unsolicited Advice

Yesterday morning, on my way to work, I was listening to KLOVE, as usual. In between songs the DJ's were talking about an interview with one of the singers and his spouse. I don't actually remember who they were talking about but one of the questions asked was something about marital advice. Apparently they'd been married for some time and they wondered what they'd learned about marriage that they'd like to tell others. I didn't get to listen long enough to hear the answer but I still thought about it, wondering what my answer would be if I were asked that question.

So, I just asked myself that question. After all, I've been a part of a marriage for almost 36 years now. For the record, that is my ONLY qualification for giving advice so don't take me too seriously.  Anyway, here are some of my answers, not necessarily in order of importance...

  • Laugh! Everything doesn't have to be so serious. Play games. Watch silly movies together. Laughing is good.
  • Cry! Go to each other for comfort. There will be days without laughter, days when you receive heartbreaking news or overwhelming challenges. Be willing to share those days as well. When the world is too cruel, be "home" to one another.
  • Forget about fairness! Did that one take you by surprise? I mean it. If you are always worrying that you might be getting the short end of the stick in a relationship, you are missing the point. When something good happens to your loved one or they get something that makes them happy, that should bring you joy as well. Period.
  • Stand up for each other! Don't go speaking poorly of your spouse to others. That is just bad form. Keep in mind, you are part of a team. Team members have to protect one another, not bring each other down.
  • Always, always, always look for the good in your spouse. It is easy to get into the habit of pointing out flaws or focusing on the rough edges. Stop it!  Look again with loving eyes and you'l be able to see the goodness. Then, let them know what you appreciate about them. 
  • Have a firm foundation. Don't forget to pray for your marriage, for each other.  

I also want to say that I've observed many broken marriages. I am well aware that one person can do all of those bullet points perfectly and still end up with heartbreak. No marriage survives on the efforts of one person alone. For all of those who have endured a crumbling marriage, my heart goes out to you. I'm sorry for what you've had to endure.

Having said all that, I want to know what your advice would be. What bullet points would you add?

What advice would you give this young couple (if they really were a couple and not just two models)?

photo by stockimages
found at freedigitalimages.net

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