Have you ever treated your marriage like a microphone that just isn’t carrying your voice. You aren’t sure if you are being heard, if your words are coming across clearly so you just keep tapping the microphone, tapping it until you hear that loud vibrating bomp it gives off when it’s working. Occasionally I feel like I’m just waiting to hear that bomp in the marriage. Just a sign that my husband sees me, a sign that we aren’t really roommates who’ve decided to have kids together for the increased tax return. I don’t think I’m alone in these thoughts. It’s not like they are all the time but all marriages do go through slumps. If someone tries to argue with me on this please look at divorce statistics first and if you can convince me that a divorce isn’t the worst kind of slump in a marriage than I might just have to give you a gold star. Yeah, you thought about it, I’m not giving out any gold stars today am I? Same with those marriages that last 50-60 years. You can’t be under the same roof with somebody that long without a few terrifying slumps! Mr. Lane and I have had our share of slumps, sometimes it’s just getting into the routine of turning on the television right after the kids are down and not really interacting the rest of the night. Sometimes it’s not really seeing each other, not taking the time to show our love to one another. I’ve heard people say, “Well, you shouldn’t have to see proof to know that your spouse loves you.” Okay, I get what you’re saying, if you are really in love then they should just know how you feel and that be that. But then come those dreaded slumps, the microphone moments when you just don’t know if that marriage, that love is working anymore. Those slumps can easily turn into slopes if we let them. Mr. Lane and I have fallen into the snare of a downward slump/slope and it took one of us noticing, one of us saying, WOAH… wait a minute here this thing, this once wonderful and loving marriage is slowly dying. Thank the Lord that one of us has always shown the other love, put the other back on top of their list of priorities (right there under God of course) and trudged up out of that slump. It takes work, it takes determination and a little humbling of oneself to do it but it can be done.
John 13:34 says, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.”
So how has God loved us? How does God love us? Well, he shows me everyday by the blessings he has given me, my children, my marriage (slump or no slump), his forgiveness and grace that constantly overwhelms me because I know I don’t deserve it. When I feel like this marriage isn’t working, when it feels like there isn’t enough love to carry it, that’s when I think of all the ways God loves. Showing I love my husband can be as small as bringing home Mike and Ikes because that’s his favorite candy or as big as a scavenger hunt around the house, which I’ve done by the way and I think I had more fun with it than he did but it’s the thought that counts. I’m sure you can go bigger than that but remember I’m a stay at home mom;). So when you are wishing your spouse would give a little and show some love first and then you can return it, remember there is no prize for the quietest mouse game. And if there is it’s not going to be much better than a little tootsie roll which doesn’t last long and hurts later. (I’m not the greatest at metaphors but after rereading that one I’ve decided to keep it because it gave me a little chuckle.)
I understand that all marriages have different struggles and hurts. Some have seen much better days and some have already seen their final days. I just write about what I’ve learned in my marriage and what has helped us get through some not so lovey dovey marriage moments and I’m sure there will be more to come but I also know that if we love like God loves than it’s easier to get through it, easier to love with your whole heart even when we don’t feel it in return. I always think how sad it must make God to have so many not return his love but how he still loves us regardless. I sure am thankful for that.