like you and your spouse do from day to day. So how you feel about your marriage at any given moment is not necessarily how you will feel about your marriage down the road.
That sounds like very good news if you are in the doldrums or the argue-about-everything season, and yet it sounds a bit ridiculous when you are in the warmth and satisfaction of the honeymoon season. With a marriage so new and fresh you can't imagine ever feeling anything but a happy love for your beloved. (Yes, newlyweds, we oldlyweds remember!)
The takeaway here is that your feelings about your marriage will change, so don't rely on them to judge the health of it. It is perfectly normal for every marriage to have its ups and downs, even the healthy ones. A happy marriage is one that is generally happy, not specifically happy in this particular instant in time. So, newlyweds, as you transition from a newlywed to an oldlywed, don't forget this!
|In your own brokenness you give and receive love.|
Your marriage is no different.
Always remember that your feelings are not the arbiter of the health of your marriage. Don't panic if you feel less enthusiastic about things from one day to the next. Marriage is one of those lifelong tasks. In fact, marriage is a vocation. As such, God is using your marriage to transform you into the person He created you to be. That takes time. That takes effort. That effort creates discomfort. Discomfort breeds discontent. Therefore if you are feeling unhappiness or worse about your marriage, it is very likely that some heavy duty work is being done in your soul. In that case, here's a couple of quick cures for what ails you:
1. Stop complaining!
Don't complain about your feelings to your spouse, your friends, or even to yourself. Complaining is a bad habit that we fall into and it does more harm than good. When you are complaining you are not looking to solve any problems but are instead merely trying to blow off some emotional steam. Complaining won't relieve your feelings. Instead complaining reinforces and underscores negative feelings and so increases and breeds them rather than relieving them. Complaining will only bear bad fruit.
To break the complaining habit, substitute it with prayer. When you feel the urge to complain tell God you are being tempted to complain. Ask Him to help you through the moment and to transform your outlook so you can stop feeling so frustrated about things.
2. Start rephrasing!
If you are tempted to complain to or about your spouse, it may be a sign that there is a problem. The root of the problem may not ultimately be a communication issue, but working at communication will certainly help the problem. So the next time you are discussing that particular issue you are tempted to complain about focus on what you need to hear from your spouse on this issue rather than what you need to say about it. Rephrase what you think they are saying and ask, "Is this what you mean? Help me understand what you are saying."
If anything, God and your spouse will remind you of the love you feel underneath all those other emotions. That always helps.
This has been a Wifey Wednesday post. For an even wifier Wednesday click on over to To Love Honor and Vacuum!