Mary Cathryn Tames
In any relationship, but particularly in a marriage, communication is key, hardly a groundbreaking statement…. In fact, we hear advice about communication from every quarter, and perhaps sometimes we shut it off because we feel we’re communicating well enough. We share information. We talk about our day with each other. We go for occasional or regular dates and explore how to deepen our relationship. We communicate about our budget and financial responsibilities….
In a marriage, we’ve made a promise to love another person forever, not just communicate but love, give ourselves, care, sacrifice, challenge, reach down into our very depths to lift up affection and care for the other even when we’re tired, exasperated, or hurt. Only Jesus can make this possible, this retrieval of a God-like love that is creative and generative.
How do we concretely retrieve this love when our marriage seems unhappy, perhaps flattening out under the weight of fatiees, when we’re afraid of what is happening between ourselves and the other person?
Here are three pointers:
- Live in the present moment. By focusing on what’s really happening today we relieve our relationship of the pressure of the memory of yesterday or the fear of tomorrow.
- Consider the cost of not addressing the pain in a relationship.
- Remember that the unhappiness that you are experiencing is covering up the deep reservoir of love in both of you, as well as the possibility of restoring the relationship. Talking together about what’s happening allows you the possibility of reigniting that love, a love that will be more mature for having suffered, more deeply aware. Not talking about it guarantees stagnation.
Every attempt at loving is