Marriage can become mundane. It seems to fade into the background as you move along. It becomes routine as you complacently go about life.
Your life with your spouse soon appears dull, unadventurous, tedious, lifeless, and on the verge of becoming annoying.
The spark that once ignited the relationship seems to have been extinguished by some massive wave or gust of wind. Things aren’t what they once were. You wake up one morning and realize things are different. Your husband is different. You are different.
Anyone with me? Have you ever felt this way before? Been there?
Is love lost? Is that spark gone forever?
I heard of it happening even in the beginning stages of our relationship. I understood relationships weren’t’ always easy. I had seen the ending of many relationships growing up. I understood that happily ever after was a fairy tale ending and the story of life didn’t always end with those three words.
I soon realized that it was a lot harder than I had originally thought it would be. Sure marriage IS wonderful but it takes work. When two imperfect people do life together it tends to get messy and life gets in the way, jobs, family, friends, dishes. Things pile up between you without you even noticing.
Recently for B and I, it felt like we were more off than on. That spark just wasn’t there. I felt misunderstood, mistreated, frustrated, annoyed, unloved, ignored…
What happened? How did we get sooooo off?
We were fighting more, indifferent with one another, crumbling. Our marriage had become routine, complacency had taken over. We were drifting.
I didn’t understand how it got it be like this, so fast. Everyone else seemed to have such a tender loving relationship and here I was faking it. I felt what people saw was not what we were. I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t know what had happened.
But then, in the midst of one of our many conversations as I gazed into my husband’s eyes, I stopped. I stopped talking and I listened. I listened to the quiet that had grown between us.
I looked at my husband, his head was down, his shoulders were hunched over, his eyes were sad as he looked down at the floor and I realized I had put him there.
I had deflated him. I had beat him down, I had discouraged him and torn him apart.
When did this start happening? I hadn’t vowed that at our wedding.
In that moment I realized I, me, miss perfect, always right, better than my husband, me had done this, had caused this.
I was so concerned about myself, about my wants, my life, my needs, about what my husband wasn’t doing for me, that I had never stopped. I just allowed myself to keep going, for life to continue as it always had, making our marriage routine, allowing us to drift. I just kept walking all over my husband not noticing what wrong I was doing only seeing what wrong he had done.
We just kept going, living our lives mundanely instead of actively pursuing each other. We had become idle allowing ourselves to drift from one another, allowing the pile between us to grow for the sake of continuing, for the sake of ourselves.
When we got married we promised to each other to fight, to intentionally pursue one another, walking towards one another each and every day, laying aside our wants and our needs for the sake of the other, loving one another sacrificially unconditionally—Agape.
Somewhere along the way we stopped fighting FOR one another. Instead we decided to live for ourselves, to live our own lives. Instead of ONE we were TWO.
The thing is, when you love someone with all your heart, with all you have, sacrificially giving of your time, yourself, pursuing him/her, things don’t stay the same, life can’t be mundane. That kind of love changes people, it puts things in motion, magnetizing two souls to one another.
THAT SPARK THAT ONCE WAS CAN STILL BE AGAIN.
It’s ignited and fed by sacrifice, by sacrificial love much like the love that was displayed for us on the cross, the love that actively pursued us when we were far, the love that did not blink at our ugly, at our mess, the love that tenderly called us home.
THERE IS NO GREATER LOVE THAN THIS, THAT SOMEONE LAY DOWN HIS LIFE FOR HIS FRIENDS.
Marriage is the laying down of your life. It’s intentionally sacrificing everyday. It’s looking at your spouse, knowing the ugly, knowing the messy, knowing that they don’t deserve it, but loving them anyway, because that is how you have been loved.
So is the spark back for us? I’d say so, yes. But we didn’t just bang two pieces of metal together to make the spark re-appear. It was not of our doing. God intervenes in our marriage because we are his children and he cares about us. We didn’t get our spark back by doing something. In fact, we got it back by not doing something. We stopped living so loudly that we drowned each other and God out. We didn’t do a pros and cons list, we didn’t follow a seven step procedure, we just listened to each other, but more importantly to Jesus.
If your looking for a step-by-step manual on how to “do it right” when it comes to anything marriage related, you’ve come to the wrong blog site.
Why? Because our God does not often work in our lives by giving us a comfortable program to follow. Instead, he makes us uncomfortable, which forces us to grow closer to him in ways we never imagined we could. And yes, it also grows us stronger together as a couple.
How do you get the spark back? Stop banging pieces of metal together and trying to do it by force. The spark comes from Jesus, so stop trying to win the argument and listen to each other, listen to God, and watch the sparks fly!