Sunday, 27 November 2016

Making The Holidays Merry For Your Marriage

Christmas is a wonderful time, but often it introduces stressful moments and new demands on us that can take a toll on our relationship with our spouse.  It doesn't have to be that way though, Christmas can (and should) be a time where your emotional, spiritual, and sexual bonds with each other are strengthened.  Christ came to this world to make it possible for you and your family to be together forever.  He wouldn't want the celebration of his birth to become an obstacle to having a wonderful relationship with your spouse.  Here are some suggestions to help Christmas become something that strengthens your marriage:

Do Christmas Things Together
There are lots of tasks that are specific to Christmas.  Putting up the tree and decorating it, putting up Christmas lights outside, shopping for gifts, baking, cooking Christmas dinner, etc. etc. etc.  While it is not practical to do all of those things as a couple, there are many that can be shared.  Shopping for gifts for the kids together can be a great date night activity.  Men, don't assume you can't help with Christmas dinner, ask what you can do to help.

Often Christmas opens up opportunities to serve others, and this is something that can sometimes be done as a couple.  Also, going a little further out of our way to serve our spouse and express gratitude for them is very much in keeping with the spirit of Christmas and helps shed holiday stress

Keep The Spirit In Your Home 
Christmas can make it easier to keep the spirit in your home.  Music can be a powerful force to bring in the spirit, and Christmas overflows with music.  Play positive Christmas music softly in the background to create that Christmas feeling in the home and car.  Likewise, there are inspiring Christmas movies that also invite the spirit into your home.

Above all, do not let the business of Christmas keep you from having family prayer, prayer with your spouse, personal prayer, family home evening, and personal and family scripture study.  Be sure that the parts of the scriptures relevant to Christmas are read aloud at some point.

Family Traditions
For a newly married couple, each will have their own families traditions they grew up with, and over the years they will merge and augment those to form their own unique way of celebrating.  My father came from Scandinavia.  Our Christmas traditions were influenced by those of his homeland.  When my wife and I started having Christmas on our own rather than at her parent's or mine, we had to define what 'our' Christmas would be like.

Traditions are good when they remind us of important things and help bring us closer together.  If you don't have some Christmas traditions unique to your family, it is never too late to start one.  One we started for our family is that each year we get a new ornament for the tree that in some way refers to one or more important events from the past year.   We have a ornaments that commemorate the births of our children, the purchase of our first home, and other milestones.  This has made decorating the Christmas tree a trip down memory lane, a reminder of the blessings we have received over the years.

Make Time For Intimacy, And Make It Special
Absolutely do not let intimacy take a back seat to Christmas preparations, instead take the opportunity to make it something extra special.  Deliberately plan your days and evenings so that you will have time and energy for each other.  Make yourself a gift for your spouse, literally even!  There are a lot of Christmas themed things that can be done to spice things up.  You can even have intimate Christmas traditions that only the two of you know about.   You can send each other Christmas wish lists that are for their eyes only and set about making something from your spouse's list your gift to them.

Don't limit intimacy to the bedroom either, go for a romantic walk in the snow, make a snowman, see if you can still ice skate, go spend time together enjoying the beautiful sights, sounds, tastes and experiences that are only available this time of year.

That should be a good starting point for you to work with, the details will have to be up to the two of you. I count the opportunity to be together with my wife for eternity to be the greatest blessing God has given me, and I know that would not be possible had Christ had not come, so to me Christmas and my marriage are strongly linked to each other.

I hope you all have a VERY Merry Christmas.

No comments:

Post a Comment