Marriage Value: Playful Humor, Part 2

Apr 2, 2014 by

laughing couple

 

On Tuesday, we introduced the idea of playful humor. Today, let’s look at some ways to incorporate humor and joy into your marriage. Just remember as we talk about humor, you need to be sure you know your spouse’s sense of humor. You don’t want to offend them in the process of trying to make them laugh.

Humor really is going to happen in three different areas – being silly, sharing humorous situations, and taking your self less seriously.

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Marriage Value: Playful Humor, Part 1

Mar 31, 2014 by

laughing couple

 

This week, we will cover the seventh and final value we have established for our marriage, Playful Humor. If you haven’t read the previous six, you can check out Absolute Commitment and Unconditional Love, Part 1 and 2, Love God and One Another, Part 1 and 2, Honest Communication, Part 1 and 2Cherish and Respect, Part 1 and 2,  Unwavering Support, Part 1 and 2, Passionate Intimacy, Part 1 and 2.

When we were just newlyweds, we lived in a townhouse. It was a sweet two-bedroom place in Columbus, OH. We had a simple newlywed first couch, a bedroom suite that Jim’s parents had bought him, and in the guest room twin beds from my childhood. In our kitchen we had a cute white-topped table with bright yellow legs. It was humble, but it was our place to create memories for our family.

One of my first memories in that little townhouse happened one night when we had meat, mashed potatoes, and peas for dinner. You may wonder why I remember exactly what we ate. It’s because I had to clean them off the walls, the floor, and furniture…. We had the best food fight, and it began with a spoonful of potatoes flicked across the table. We laughed and screamed and had so much fun… And then we had to be adults again and clean up the kitchen.

Playful humor has always been a part of our relationship. Oh, there have been ebbs and flows. In what I call the tired years – when the kids were all little, and I was always up in the night feeding and changing someone – I may have lost a little of my sense of humor. Or when Jim planted The River Church and the responsibilities weighed on him, he became a little more serious. But for the most part, in big or in little ways, we have made sure playfulness supersedes the seriousness of life.

laughing iconThe other benefit of keeping playful humor in your life is you must remain humble. Many times what makes us laugh are our own mistakes and slip-ups – saying a wrong word, tripping over a rug, dropping a flipped pancake…. We make  small and major miss-steps every day. We could be all embarrassed about it and get upset when others laugh, OR we can stop taking ourselves so seriously and simply laugh. No one is perfect. Everyone makes mistakes. (I know; these are major revelations. Good thing we are writing them down.) But the your joy remains intact when you view them as a source of humor, not humiliation. And by laughing at yourself, you make others more comfortable with their own imperfections and foibles.

So starting today, how can you turn mistakes into laughter, see the funny side of life, and enjoy being with your husband or wife? You both have enough serious stuff to deal with every day. Take some time to throw some mashed potatoes and peas. It could just save your marriage.

How can you incorporate more playful humor into your marriage?

On Thursday, we will ask some questions that may help you create more playful humor in your marriage.

~ Jim and Jerolyn

 

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Marriage Value: Passionate Intimacy, Part 2

Mar 12, 2014 by

Intimacy2

 

Tuesday was Part 1 of our blog on Passionate Intimacy. Today we will cover some strategies to having a healthy marriage through Intimacy.

As we look at practical tips for passionate intimacy, let’s start with communication. How often is it realistic for a couple to spend time in lovemaking? No men, it cannot be once or twice a day. We may think that initially but honestly men, we aren’t even ready for it that often with our busy schedules and lifestyles. We claim that is what we want and joke about it, but it is not realistic. And women, it isn’t every 6 months either. Okay, we may be stereotyping both sexes here and there is often a role reversal in the desires or seasons and stages of our lives, but most often how we are wired is pretty true to the joking ideas of “let’s make love everyday,” or “we had sex last month and you want it again?”

Communication.

With our honest physical and emotional needs for both sexes, what is realistic? There is no formula or equation that works for every couple, therefore, a great place to start with passionate intimacy is once again to talk about it. What meets the needs of your spouse? What is happening in your season of life of work, family, activities, etc.? These are not excuses to ignore this important priority of intimacy, just reality. But to not talk about it and work on it together is to cause frustration and even resentment. What works for you? What is best for both of you? Again, what is realistic, sustainable, and validating in meeting the intimate needs of one another?

When it comes to communication, what statements and signals are you giving your spouse? What comments are either degrading or encouraging to your spouse? Intimacy is more than sex, it is how you communicate your love to one another. How do you compliment your spouse? What cute “pet” names or key phrases do you have that are only for you two?

Communication is more than just words. What glances across the room or gentle touches communicate your love for one another. What gestures or acts show kindness and care for one another? These are key in communicating sincere love and intimacy for one another. And, just as a hint, these don’t hurt towards having more intimate times together…sex.

couple dreaming at sunsetSeveral have said for years that lovemaking doesn’t start in the bedroom. It might start in the kitchen. Every once in awhile it might even end in the kitchen. For those of us who are more practical, try a little spice and romance like that. It might surprise you how much fun it is. But back to the point of communicating, what acts show you care and help with the things of life to create more time and space for something even more in the bedroom?

Being purposeful.

This means have a game plan of what may work on a regular basis. Discuss and plan for this with intentionality. Spontaneity is good, but not the best game plan.  Being purposeful helps to make it a reality. We know this may sound a bit clinical, but choosing to commit to being purposeful helps so much more than hinders passionate intimacy. It really does work!

Plan date nights and don’t expect every date night to end in romantic sexual intimacy. Plan these nights and prioritize these times on your calendars. Write them down and commit to them. If you don’t, they don’t happen. Like everything else, life happens and squeezes time, energy, and effort. Passionate intimacy is critical and a key priority in our marriages. Plan and be creative. Take turns planning these times and find special things your spouse enjoys. It may be simple and low budget, but it is the time together to date one another that both men and women desire. Plan the bigger event and getting away to create those special times without interruption and effort to show your spouse how much you love them and want to be with them. Do keep the romantic passion alive and hot, just don’t expect it every night or once a year. Delight in your spouse, enjoy one another, and share the most intimate part of your relationship to deepen your love for one another.

  • What do you need to do to prioritize Passionate Intimacy?
  • What communication needs to happen between the two of you to express your needs?
  • What are some ways you can create time, space, and places to be intimate with your husband/wife?

~ Jim and Jerolyn

 

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Marriage Values: Passionate Intimacy, Part 1

Mar 10, 2014 by

Intimacy2

 

We have covered five our our seven marriage values from our book, Faith Legacy for Couples: Seven Values to Shape Your Marriage.  Absolute Commitment and Unconditional Love, Part 1 and 2, Love God and One Another, Part 1 and 2, Honest Communication, Part 1 and 2Cherish and Respect, Part 1 and 2 and Unwavering Support, Part 1 and 2.

Today we will talk Passionate Intimacy. ~ J & J

Now don’t get scared. Whether you love sex or not, there are some principles that this value possesses that you must hear. The health of your marriage depends on a truly passionate relationship and all that your mutually defined intimacy involves.

Both men and women need intimate touch and connection. We are sensual beings, created to crave human connection. Studies have shown that babies will not thrive without gentle touch. We start off from the beginning of our existence needing to be held and loved. Even those who are single by choice or through a spouse’s death still need to have regular physical contact with another human being. Hugs and a simple touch on the arm reminds us that we are not alone, but part of a community of people who care for and about each other.

God designed the most intimate touch to be experienced by one man and one woman in marriage. The biblical phrase we often hear in weddings, “The two shall become one.” is both realized in the spiritual sense and the physical. The very makeup of our bodies allows them to be united into two heartbeats joined as one person. What a beautiful and perfect intimacy.Intimacy3

This bond formed between a husband and wife is a vital part of a healthy marriage and cannot be dismissed or neglected. Yes, there will be seasons where time and energy seems a challenge, i.e. when you have small children in the house. But that is not an excuse to ignore each other’s needs. You are the only person who can meet your spouse’s needs and that is a responsibility you must take seriously.

So what does a woman need? Many women enjoy the act of sex; but not all women. What all women do enjoy is the closeness, the intimate touch, caressing and focused attention of their husband. They need to know they are loved, appreciated, and desired by him – that she is the only woman who excites him and fills his need for a partner in life. She wants the assurance that she is special enough to be romanced and that her presence is powerful enough to pull his attention away from the distractions of life.

So what does a man need? Physically, a man needs to have sexual release, and it has been stated that a man needs this every 72 hours. This of course is different for different men, and the age of men. But he also needs his wife to want him, desire him, and enjoy the advances he makes at her in a playful way. A man needs attention as well and although he is often the one to make the suggestion of sex (or the more direct hint), he does like it when his wife “pursues” him. He wants to be wanted.

A man wants to be attractive to his wife and likes it when she is attractive to him. As a husband the intimacy may look different, but it is still intimacy that he desires. He wants to love and be loved in a very special intimate way with and for his wife. He needs the physical, absolutely, but also desires and needs the emotional intimacy that comes from love-making.

How do you view or value intimacy with your spouse?

On Thursday we will discuss some strategies for healthy intimacy in marriage.

~ Jim and Jerolyn

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Marriage Values: Unwavering Support, Part 2

Feb 5, 2014 by

suport

On Tuesday, we covered our 5th value from Faith Legacy for Couples: Seven Values to Shape Your Marriage. Today, we will look at some strategies for living out the value of Unwavering Support.

In a marriage, each couple needs to know the other has their back – that no matter what, their spouse will stand by their side and help them through whatever they are facing, good or bad. We call it pulling on the same side of the rope. In Tug-of-War, you pull against one another on each end of a rope to move it into position so you can win. But in a marriage, you and your spouse must be pulling together on the same side of the rope so your marriage can win. You are a team and as such, you must support one another unwaveringly.

So how do you do that?

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