If we didn’t grow up with the privilege of observing a godly, committed marriage and don’t later get our hands on a solid blueprint of how it’s supposed to look with wise premarital counseling, it seems logical to second guess our hearts.
As romantic as it sounds, the one thing I know we cannot trust is our hearts. We can’t always “follow our hearts.” Scripture tells us that “the heart is deceitful above all.” We can be fooled.
Proverbs 4:23 also cautions “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.” The Message translates it with even more bite: “Keep vigilant watch over your heart, that’s where life starts.”
Someone once said, “To love is to admire with the heart.” Most of our men would be thrilled to feel our sincere admiration of who they are and what they do or try to do for us. It’s just that lots of us don’t have a clue what to do when the honeymoon bags are unpacked and the hard work of marriage begins.
When Greg and I were dating, we foolishly made what I always think of as the “kitchen cabinet promise.” We declared to one another that we would not let our marriage sink to the abysmal depths that we observed around us. Our marriage would be different. Our late night marathon talks about life, dreams, memories, and philosophy would never stop. Our fights would be miniscule, our romantic aspirations over the top. Nothing, neither children, nor bills, nor adversity, nor petty irritations, would ever shake what we felt, what we had at this moment. Good grief! You’d have thought we were making a political speech!
We had no business making such a promise. Not because it wasn’t admirable or romantic, but because we were leveling the pressure of filling a God-sized hole with another human being. We were setting ourselves up for disappointment.
What you’re actually saying “I do” to is hard work! “The marriage ceremony isn’t like graduation; rather, it’s similar to the first day of kindergarten! It’s not the culmination, but the beginning.” We need to start treating it that way.
A man and a woman were in their early thirties when they finally discovered each other and were married. They were in an elated state of anticipation on their honeymoon, except for one secret each had kept from the other: He had the stinkiest feet in the free world and she, the worst breath.
On their wedding night, while his bride was in the bathroom preparing herself, the groom undressed and slid all the way down under the blankets, praying that the covers would hide the smell of his feet while he waited for his bride.
Meanwhile, the bride procrastinated — brushing and flossing, gargling with mouthwash, and brushing again. Figuring that she couldn’t put it off forever, she emerged from the bathroom. The eager groom patted the side of the bed.
Snuggled up beside him, the teary-eyed bride announced, “Oh, honey, I have something awful to tell you!”
“I think I know,” the groom blurted out. “You ate my socks!”
Thankfully, not all of our honeymoon surprises are this bad! Still all of us have some surprise in store and some adjustments to make.
Checklist for Recapturing the Honeymoon
- If possible, return to the scene of your first date or the site of your proposal.
- Cuddle up with your favorite snacks and watch your wedding video.
- Shoot for a not-too-far-off anniversary and plan a spectacular celebration — a vow renewal ceremony, revisiting the church or city hall where your ceremony took place, a special trip.
- Let him open the door for you.
- Occasionally meet him at the door with his favorite beverage.
- Hold hands as you drift off to sleep.
- Cuddle on the couch.
- Read the Song of Solomon together. Out loud, if possible.
- Get a triple frame and choose your favorite courtship, wedding, and honeymoon photos to display.
- Go on a honeymoon “walk,” verbally revisiting anniversary memories for each year.
- If the special nightgown you wore on your first night together still fits, get it out and wear it. If not, search for a similar one and spend a night away rekindling that feeling.
Copyright © 2009 by Cindy Sigler Dagnan, Used with Permission, Published by Harvest House. Adapted from Hot Chocolate For Couples All rights reserved.