Tuesday, May 4, 2010

when rest helps marriage

I am my husband's refuge - after God! - and he is mine.

In the evening, once the kids are reading or sleeping in bed, we shut the bedroom door (of course, it gets opened a dozen times by kids asking vitally important questions like "Can I brush my teeth now?", but that's another story).

We watch a DVD, we chat and cuddle, and sometimes we read a book together and pray. It's a precious time for us to communicate and enjoy each other, and to find help and strength to face the day.

But there are days when I come to our time grumpy, exhausted, moody, glum and irritable, with words like these running through my head: "I'm tired! No, I'm exhausted! I've been working hard all day! I did the cleaning. I did the shopping. The kids demanded my attention every minute of the day, and now you want my attention! The living room's untidy! The dishes aren't finished! I'm TIRED!". Sound familiar?

I was walking and praying when a solution came to me. To protect my time with my husband in the evening, it's important to set aside time for rest during the day. I may need to put down the vacuum cleaner and go the park with my son, or sit and read him a story, or get some exercise, or drink a cup of tea and read a book. I may need to stop being a Martha and read God's word and pray, seeking my rest in him.

Maybe then I'll come to the evening less tired and grumpy, and more ready to give myself to my husband. It's in my hands to bless or destroy our time together. And if I start getting ready now, maybe I'll be a blessing to my husband, and he to me, tonight.

image is from Chealion at flickr


Anonymous said...

Hi Jean,

can I ask, do you do this every day? I would love to have a time like this, but can see that if you did it all the time, then there would of course be days when you were too tired or distracted. I think you are right about rest during the day. I think, in my case, that being better organised with my time (I tend to get distracted easily) would help too.

Love, and thanks for your writing, which so often helps me,

Jean said...

Great question, Caroline, and I did think of putting in some qualifying statement - I guess maybe I should have done that.

Definitely not every day! Some days we're busy, and other days I'm too exhausted to do more than crawl into bed and sleep. Often we're too tired to do much chatting past "how was your day?". And the reading a book doesn't happen more than every few weeks, if that! So it would depend on the evening.

It's more that I'm trying to be mindful of being ready emotionally and energy-wise to spend time with Steve in the evening. The reality isn't always so simple, as you can imagine. But I find it's a helpful goal for me to have.

Love Jean.

GretchenJoanna said...

I found your blog while reading Plain Ol' Vanilla. This post is short and to the point and smart. I love the woodcarving illustration!

Hon said...

This is lovely, Jean! Just prayed that God will bless your marriage.

Jean said...

Thanks Hon, I appreciate your prayers - as always! :)