Years ago my husband tried to get me involved in kayaking. I tried it. It hurt my lower back and I was so busy with my own obsessive sports that I saw no need to add one more thing to my agenda. So he went kayaking a lot and I ran, rode or did my own thing.
In like manner, I kept trying to get my sweetheart to come to church with me and the children. It was of no interest to him. He assumed our church was like the church of his youth, where there were a lot of rituals and boring sermons that had nothing to do with his everyday life. So I rounded up three kids by myself and took them to church while he most likely went bike riding or kayaking.
Over the years we have entered adulthood perhaps slower than most couples, but as they say, better late than never. Right?
At various times in our relationship, we have studied self-help books, had meetings with various pastors, and even worked through a self-help book or two. Or, maybe father time mellowed us a bit. No matter the reason, we began to appreciate each other more and wanted to further our relationship beyond just raising the children and paying bills together.
One day we realized as much fun as it is to have our own activities, we were spending less and less time with each other. So my husband revisited asking me to kayak with him and I kept encouraging that he try the church the children and I had been attending.
Guess what? Much to my surprise, I love kayaking. My husband had to take some kind of foam padding and fashion it into a back support for the kayak I use when we paddle together. Then, no more backaches for me. Kayaking became really fun. Think of the years I wasted not kayaking with the man of my dreams simply because of one or two experiences with some mild physical discomfort.
When my husband relented and came to the church with me, he discovered that our pastor told jokes, related the Bible teachings to practical applications in life and was quite engaging. The people in the congregation were friendly and every week we met new people during the social time afterward.
Think of the years he could have been enjoying a Sunday service with me! Finding a church that has small groups, relevant sermons, and is alive in the Holy Spirit truly helped us grow spiritually.
The most exciting thing for us was when we discovered that we can do a lot in 24 hours. Did you know that we can do both church and kayaking in the same day? Not only did we learn how to appreciate something the other one used to corner the market on, but we are also growing in our faith and maturity while staying in shape for each other. Health and happiness never grow out of style.
Are you doing things with your spouse? Too much autonomy can create distance in the relationship. Like a wedding cake, marriage has so many tiers. Isn’t it worth discovering and tasting all that marriage can bring?
Let me know what you thought you would never enjoy but you have learned to embrace. Often times, people spell love “T.I.M.E.” Go and spend some time with your love.