Two years of marriage is not a long time, but we’ve packed a lot in. We’ve divided our time equally between two continents, visited thirteen countries, met countless phenomenal people and started to get used to this whole “doing life together” thing. We’ve taken it in turns to both struggle with and adore our jobs and have felt a call from God that is both exciting and earth-shatteringly terrifying for us. It hasn’t been even close to perfect, but it has been great. Really great.
We’re so far from being able to give marriage advice to anyone yet; maybe we can in a decade or so, once time has left a bit more of a mark and, perhaps, a few kids are pushing the limits of our patience. But what I can do is share one of the most transformational questions we’ve made a habit of trying to ask each another each evening before we go to sleep:
What is one thing I can do for you tomorrow to show you I love you?
We love that question. It lowers the pressure of expectation and highlights a single, tangible action that displays a conscious effort not just to nonchalantly verbalise our love for one another, but to show it. Of course, there are other duties, too: chores, errands, etc. But those are just part of making life happen. Everything after the one thing is a bonus! The answer to the previous night’s question is the holy grail; the thing above all others things to say I’m not doing this just because I have to, but because you are my partner and friend for life and I want you to know that you are completely loved.
They are often small, silly things, like (see if you can guess who asked for which thing):
- Hoover the bedroom floor
- Make me a cup of tea/coffee
- Put my blanket in the tumble dryer first thing, so it’s warm when I wake up
- Do the dishes
- Hang your clothes back up in the wardrobe
- Take out the rubbish
- Make dinner
- Buy the groceries
They usually don’t take long, and, to be honest, are often those chores that need to happen anyway. But there’s a specific intent behind it, which makes them work for us.
We love that question because, for the most part, it reminds us to live sacrificially for one another. But hey. That’s us, and we’re still just getting started.
What keeps your relationship on track? Help us learn from your experience!