I was listening to a podcast recently that talked about the rhythms of life and the importance of the Sabbath principle taught in scriptures. People say that humans are creatures of habit and in some ways that is true, but we are also creatures that need diversity and stimulation. Monotony and boredom are our enemies, and when we don’t break up the daily grind now and then we begin to break down and despair. We start asking questions like “why am I doing this” or “what’s the point?” As much as we often fear change, we desperately need change in our lives on a regular basis.
This cycle of routine without end can be deadly in a marriage. Partners in failing marriages sometimes talk about being in a rut, about lacking the spark or excitement that they had earlier in their relationship. Often this leads to the phrase “I just don’t think I’m in love with them anymore” but the real problem may simply be boredom. As B.B. King sang “The Thrill is Gone.”
As a parent, what do you say to your kids if they complain that they’re bored? The usual response is “Go do something! Go out and play! Ride a bike! Read a book! Go play in traffic!” (Ok, maybe not that last one.) Yet how often do we fail to take that advice ourselves in our marriages? If you’re feeling like your marriage is missing something, maybe you need to just go do something!
Life can be monotonous. The endless cycle of work, taxi service to softball practice or music lessons, grocery shopping, and on and on is draining life out of your marriage. You have to intentionally choose to break up the monotony with something new. The picture above is me and Lori at a recent church outing. Despite having lived in Michigan her entire life, Lori had never been ice skating before. With a death-grip on my hand, she made it all the way around the rink. Once. Will we ever go skating again? Probably not, but that’s not the point. We broke up the monotony of life with something new and it’s those kinds of new experiences that keep the spark in a relationship.
It’s often said that life is an adventure and that marriage is an adventure too. That is only true if you choose to make your life an adventure. You must choose to get outside your box, outside your comfort zone, and try something new together. You may like it, you may hate it, but at the very least it’s not the same old thing.
What will you do this week to break up the monotony in your marriage?